Sugary drinks cause around 8,000 cases of type 2 diabetes every year, according to a new report.
The study, which was conducted by researchers from the University of Cambridge, predicted that, under the current trends, 79,000 new cases of type 2 diabetes will develop over the next 10 years as a direct result of sugar-sweetened drinks.
The research does not suggest that all cases of type 2 diabetes are triggered by the consumption of sugary drinks. Many people who completely avoid sugary drinks will still develop type 2 diabetes. Their diabetes might be caused by one of the other many possible causes of type 2, including obesity, genetic inheritance or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS).
At the same time, many people who regularly consume sugary drinks will not develop type 2 diabetes. The research only indicates that regularly drinking sugar-sweetened beverages increases the likelihood of type 2 diabetes. According to the study, drinking sugary drinks causes between two and six per cent of type 2 diabetes cases.
Moreover, the research only discovered a correlation between sugary drink consumption and type 2 diabetes risk. More research will have to be carried out to confirm that sugary drinks are directly causing these cases of type 2 diabetes.
“Although more research on cause and effect needs to be carried out, this study indicates the potential health gains that may be achieved by reducing the consumption of sugar sweetened drinks,” the researchers wrote.
The research comes at a time when the health effects of sugar and sugary drinks are being heavily scrutinised. One recent report urged the government to introduce a tax on sugar-sweetened beverages, while another recommended that the recommended daily intake of sugar be halved.
The study was published in the BMJ.

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