Artificially Sweetened Soft Drinks Linked to Pre-term Delivery

Participants were 59,334 women enrolled in the Danish National Birth Cohort from 1996 to 2002. The goal of the study was to evaluate the association between consumption of sugar-sweetened and artificially sweetened soft drinks and preterm delivery.
Women avoid sugar- sweetened soft drinks because they have been linked to a number of adverse health outcomes such as high weight gain. Artificially-sweetened soft drinks are often promoted as an alternative, but the safety of artificial sweeteners has been disputed, and consequences of high intakes of artificial sweeteners especially for pregnant women have been minimally addressed.
The study compared daily consumption of sugar- sweetened soft drinks vs. artificially-sweetened soft drinks in pregnant women. They found that daily intake of artificially sweetened soft drinks was associated with an increased risk for preterm delivery regardless of the women’s weight, whether normal or obese.
They did not find this association of preterm delivery with those women who consumed sugar-sweetened carbonated or noncarbonated soft drinks.
They conclude that further studies are needed to reject or confirm these findings.
The study was reported in the September 2010 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

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