Sugary drinks and increased colon cancer risk linked in study involving nurses

Young adults who drink sugary beverages may be at an increased risk of developing colon cancer, researchers claim. The study, which involved 116,500 female nurses from 1991 to 2015, found that compared with women who drank less than one 8-ounce serving per week of sugar-sweetened beverages, those who drank two or more per day had over twice the risk of developing early-onset colorectal cancer.

The American Cancer Society has identified several lifestyle factors considered risk factors for colorectal cancer, including alcohol use, obesity, not being active, smoking and even certain types of diets including those high in red meats and processed meats. However, there are several other factors that cannot be controlled such as getting older, personal history of colorectal polyps or colorectal cancer, personal history of inflammatory bowel disease, several inherited syndromes and family history. Type 2 diabetes has also been associated with an increased risk of colorectal cancer.

In the new study the research team, from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, found a 16% increase in risk for each 8-ounce serving of sugary drink added per day. In ages 13 to 18, each serving was linked to a 32% increased risk of eventually developing colorectal cancer before age 50.

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