Diet soda might be associated with a higher risk of depression in adults, a new study released Jan. 8 by the American Academy of Neurology shows. The research found that more than 260,000 older adults in a United States survey who drank at least four daily servings of artificially sweetened drinks were at a higher chance of, in the next decade, being diagnosed with depression.
The beverages that were used in the test were diet soda, diet fruit drinks and diet iced tea. The adults tested were between the ages of 50 and 71 years old when the study started. The study lasted about 10 years and after that length of time, the participants were asked if they had been diagnosed in the past several years with depression. A little more than four percent stated that they had.
At the beginning of the study, the more aspartame-sweetened diet drinks the person drank, the higher the depression risk. The participants who drank at least four cans or cups of diet soda daily were 31 percent more prone to reporting depression than the participants who didn't drink any. Large intakes of diet iced tea and fruit punch tested the same. Regular soda was linked as well, but at a smaller risk- at 22 percent.
“Our research suggests that cutting out or down on sweetened diet drinks or replacing them with unsweetened coffee may naturally help lower your depression risk,” said study author Honglei Chen, MD, PhD, who is with the National Institutes of Health in Research Triangle Park in North Carolina. “More research is needed to confirm these findings, and people with depression should continue to take depression medications prescribed by their doctors.”
The study results were released today and will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology's annual meeting in San Diego in March 2013.
The American Beverage Association has responded to this research as follows:
“We may be in a new year, but there is nothing new about the ways our critics try to attack our industry. This research is nothing more than an abstract – it has not been peer-reviewed, published or even, at the very least, presented at a scientific meeting. Furthermore, neither this abstract nor the body of scientific evidence supports that drinking soda or other sweetened beverages causes depression. Thus, promoting any alleged findings without supporting evidence is not only premature, but irresponsible.”
Thanks for reading and to continue to read my articles, please click subscribe just above the comments section. If there is something you want a specific article written about regarding women's health in Springfield, Ill. or health in particular, just send me an email to Char.Raynor@yahoo.com.