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The authors of a new study noted there was a “statistically significant association” between drinking sugar-sweetened beverages and liver disease and cancer.

To come to such a conclusion, the team analysed data from a total of 98,786 women.

The participants’ data were extracted from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) study, which involved 40 clinical trials between 1993 to 1998.

All women involved in the data were between the ages of 50 to 79 at the time of the trials.

“To our knowledge, only two prior studies evaluated the association between sugar-sweetened beverages and liver cancer,” the authors penned.

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Women were asked to report on their usual intake of sugary drinks, regular soft drinks, and fruit juices.

They were asked to state whether they “never” had the beverages or to record how many drinks of each they would consume in a day.

Around 6.8 percent (6,692) of the participants reported consuming one or more servings of sugar-sweetened drinks each day.

Meanwhile, 13.1 percent (8,506) drank one or more artificially-flavoured drinks every day.

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The research team found that, over an average of 20.9 years of follow-ups, 207 new cases of liver cancer were diagnosed.

As for chronic liver disease, this condition was touted as the “leading cause of death for women aged 45 to 54 years”.

And the “fifth leading cause of death for men aged 45 to 64 years in 2019 in the US”.

In the analysis, there were 148 cases of death related to chronic liver disease in the WHI participants.

The authors stated: “Evidence for the associations between diet and chronic liver disease mortality is limited.

“To our knowledge, this is the first study to report a positive association between sugar-sweetened beverage intake and chronic liver disease mortality.

“Future studies should confirm these findings and identify the biological pathways of these associations.”

The study was published in the journal Jama Network Open.

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