What is often billed as a healthier beverage option may not always be the best choice. For women over 50, drinking two or more diet sodas a day could be a big health risk.
The American Heart Association and the American Stroke Association recently put out a study highlighting the risks of drinking multiple diet sodas a day for women over the age of 50. Any drink containing artificial sweetener could put people at a higher risk for many serious conditions. These conditions include heart attacks, strokes, or even early death.
Among women over 50, the risk was heightened in certain groups. This included women who had not previously been diagnosed with heart disease or diabetes, African American women, and obese women.
The study asked 80,000 women who are postmenopausal how often they partook in beverages using artificial sweeteners. Their health was then analyzed for nearly 12 years. The percentages that risk was increased for serious health issues was significant. Those who had two servings of artificially sweetened drinks per day had a 31 percent higher chance of experiencing a clot-based stroke, a 29 percent higher chance of developing heart disease, and a 16 percent higher chance of any cause of death compared to the women who did not drink as much diet soda.
Still, the results from this study are not analyzing a cause and effect. The results are merely observational. Results cannot determine if there were underlying health issues in the women who participated in the study or even if a specific artificial sweetener could have been the culprit.
Other studies have linked diet soda to other dangerous conditions, though. Research has linked the beverages to conditions such as dementia, Type 2 diabetes, obesity, stroke, and metabolic syndrome in the past.