18:13 04 January 2017
A review of drinks found no evidence to support claims that sugar-free soft drinks can contribute to weight loss or stop diseases such as Type 2 diabetes. The findings contradict previous industry-funded studies that found calorie-free drinks to be better alternatives than those laden with sugar.
Co-author Dr Maria Carolina Borges, from the Federal University of Pelotas in Brazil, said: ‘The lack of solid evidence on the health effects of ASBs and the potential influence of bias from industry funded studies should be taken seriously when discussing whether ASBs are adequate alternatives to SSBs (sugar-sweetened beverages).’
British researchers said that evidence relating to the healthiness of artificially sweetened beverages was inconclusive.
Senior investigator Professor Christopher Millett, from Imperial College London's School of Public Health, said: ‘A common perception, which may be influenced by industry marketing, is that because “diet” drinks have no sugar, they must be healthier and aid weight loss when used as a substitute for full sugar versions. However, we found no solid evidence to support this.’
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