Diabetes risk that you should know before

Drinking colas and other sugary drinks is tied to an increased risk of so-called pre-diabetes, a precursor to full-blown disease, but diet soda is not, a recent study suggests.

Previous studies on the link between diet sodas and diabetes have been mixed; some research pointing to a potential connection has suggested this relationship may be explained at least in part by soda drinkers being overweight or obese.

In the current study, however, adults who routinely consumed at least one can of soda or other sugar-sweetened beverages a day were 46 percent more likely to develop elevated blood sugar levels than people who rarely or never drink cola.

“Emphasis should be placed on substituting sugar-sweetened beverages with water, unsweetened teas, or coffee,” said senior study author Nicola McKeown, a nutrition researcher at Tufts University in Boston.

“For daily consumers of sugary drinks, kicking the habit may be a difficult challenge, and incorporating an occasional diet soda, while increasing fluids from other sources, may be the best strategy to ultimately remove sugar-sweetened beverages from the diet,” McKeown added by email.

Globally, about one in nine adults have diabetes, and the disease will be the seventh leading cause of death by 2030, according to the World Health Organization.