Drinking more than two sugary drinks daily 'raises diabetes risk'
Drinking more than two sugary or artificially sweetened soft drinks per day greatly increases the risk of diabetes, research has shown.
The Swedish study found that consuming more than two 200ml drinks more than doubled the chances of developing type 2 diabetes.
A serious soft drink habit consisting of at least five drinks boosted the likelihood of having the disease 10-and-a-half times.
Soft drinks also increased the risk of a less common condition called Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults (Lada) which shares characteristics of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes, which requires constant insulin injections, is an autoimmune disease that wipes out insulin-producing cells in the pancreas.
Type 2 alters the way the body responds to insulin and is related to obesity and lifestyle.
Researchers from the Karolinska Institute studied levels of soft drink consumption in 2,874 Swedish adults and compared them with rates of diabetes.
"In this study we were surprised by the increased risk in developing autoimmune diabetes by drinking soft drinks," lead scientist Dr Josefin Edwall Lofvenborg said.
"We next plan on investigating what could counter this risk, such as eating fatty fish."
"We are looking into this now using data from eight different countries."
Soft drinks may influence glucose metabolism and insulin sensitivity, said the researchers in the European Journal of Endocrinology.