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Drink Sugary Or Sugar-Free Drinks? Overall Diet Is Much More Important

March 28, 2012: 12:00 AM EST
A U.S. study that examined the interplay of beverage consumption and overall diet patterns has found that diet is the key factor, regardless of whether sugary or sugar-free beverages are consumed. The healthiest of the 4,000 people studied were those who ate a “prudent” diet (i.e., fruits, vegetables, fish, whole grains, nuts and milk) and did not consume diet beverages. They had a lower risk of high waist circumference, high triglyceride levels and metabolic syndrome than those who ate a Western diet (i.e., fast foods, pizza, snacks, meats, etc.) and did not drink diet beverages. The second healthiest group was individuals with a prudent diet who also consumed diet beverages. Lastly, individuals who ate the Western diet had increased risk of heart disease, regardless of the kind of beverage they drank.
Kiyah J Duffey et al., "Dietary patterns matter: diet beverages and cardiometabolic risks in the longitudinal Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) Study", American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, March 28, 2012, © American Society for Nutrition
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