Sugary drinks 'could worsen osteoarthritis'
Bethany Armitage - Jan 2013
Sugary drinks could help worsen osteoarthritis, new research claims.
Consuming sugary drinks could worsen osteoarthritis, especially in slim men and normal weight women, a new survey shows.
The common degenerative condition affects six million older adults in the UK, and could be aggravated by drinking soft drinks.
In fact, according to the Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, the more soft drinks patients consumed the faster their condition progressed.
Study leader Dr Bing Lu explained: "Little is known about the course of disability over time in patients with osteoarthritis.
"This study may offer the potential to identify a modifiable dietary risk factor for disease progression, enable evaluation of prevailing recommendations of healthy diet and thus have potential public health implications."
Sugary drinks can now be added to the list of other known risk factors, which already includes ageing, obesity and joint stress.
The research involved looking at the food diaries of over 2,000 people who had been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, with scientists monitoring consumption, body mass index and the joint space change in their medial knee compartments.
It found that the condition of those who consumed a greater amount of sugary soft drinks worsened over time.
However, it remained unclear whether the problem was due to high-calorie soft drinks, sugar or other ingredients within the liquids.
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