Lifestyle & Belief

Does soda make you fat? More scientific evidence for link between soda and obesity released


Pepsi was forced to reveal part of their secret recipe after reports surfaced that the company used aborted fetus cells in their soda.


Joe Raedle

Are you drinking sugar-sweetened soda right now? Yeah, you should probably stop doing that. 

New evidence, published in a very soda-centric edition of the New England Journal of Medicine, appears to indicate that the easiest single way for obese people to lose weight is cutting out soda from their diets—among other rather damning info on the dangers of soda consumption.

The journal wrote that caloric intake from sugar-sweetened beverages reaches a whopping 15 percent among some population groups, and that the average adolescent US male consumes around 357 calories a day from sugary beverages.

We are, apparantly, swiftly morphing into a nation of sugar-addled hummingbirds. 

Perhaps the most interesting research? People with a genetic tendency towards obesity appear to be harmed more (and made fatter) by regular soda consumption, than those without the genes. 

Other New England Journal of Medicine articles dealt with the regulation of sugary beverages, and the reputed link betwen childhood obesity and sugary beverage consumption—although a decisive connection has yet to be proven. 

Read more from GlobalPost: Report: 50 percent of Americans will be obese by 2030 at current rate

"I know of no other category of food whose elimination can produce weight loss in such a short period of time," Dr. David Ludwig, director of the New Balance Foundation Obesity Prevention Center and leader of one of the New England studies, told Reuters.

"The most effective single target for an intervention aimed at reducing obesity is sugary beverages."

Obviously, the American Beverage Association is less than taken with the studies results, and leapt to contradict them on their website. 

"We know, and science supports, that obesity is not uniquely caused by any single food or beverage.

Thus, studies and opinion pieces that focus solely on sugar-sweetened beverages, or any other single source of calories, do nothing meaningful to help address this serious issue," the ABA stated. 

And obesity certainly is a problem: recently-released research indicates a remarkable 50 percent of Americans will be obese by 2030. Perhaps we should rediscover the manifold joys of tap water. 

Read more from GlobalPost: Obese people have weaker taste buds, study says

It's been a tough few weeks for soda promoters: earlier this month, New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg successfully pushed through his controversial ban on soda servings over 16 ounces in the metropolis.