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Study: Sugary Drinks Heart Disease Risk

July 5, 2010, 5:10 PM by Kelli Grant

Study: Sugary Drinks Heart Disease Risk
Sugary drinks won't only increase your waistline. A new finds people who drink more than two and a half sugary drinks per day increase their risk for developing high blood pressure.

It's a quick fix for a tired afternoon or refreshing on a hot day but this sugary drink can also be a key culprit in diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Researchers studied more than 4,500 adults with no prior history of high blood pressure. They were questioned about the foods they ate.

Results show people who took in 74 grams or more of fructose per day had a greater risk for high blood pressure.

That’s about two and a-half soft drinks per day. For most Americans, this means cutting soft drink intake in half.

Researchers say high blood pressure can be modified. And if you'd like to cut out the calories and that risk, you don't have to go cold turkey.

“So maybe if you have three or four drinks, start by cutting down by one and going from there or maybe cutting the sugar that you put in your coffee in half. If you usually use two or three spoons, try to go down to one or one and a half," Registered Dietitian Julia Zumpano said. 

A report by the U.S. Institute of Medicine earlier this year declared high blood pressure a quote "neglected disease" in the United States. It accounts for one in six deaths and adds $73 billion a year in health costs.

About 47 percent of the sugars most Americans consume every day come from sweetened beverages.

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