The study suggests drinking more than two sugar-sweetened drinks a week increased the risk of Type 2 diabetes while just one was enough to raise blood pressure.
Sugary drinks, such as cola and lemonade, are known to lead to diabetes by causing a spike in blood sugar levels, according to reports.
High-levels of sugary beverages are long-known to cause obesity and lead to chronic illness, soda consumption is steadily rising among all age groups worldwide.
Researchers say the drinks are ‘energy dense’ and their consumption has been associated with excessive caloric intake and subsequent weight gain.
The review, led by Stellenbosch University in South Africa, evaluated 36 academic studies of people who drank more than five sugar-sweetened drinks a week.
Author Prof Faadiel Essop said: “Sugar-sweetened beverage consumption is steadily rising among all age groups worldwide.
“Our analysis revealed that most epidemiological studies strongly show that frequent intake of these beverages contributes to the onset of the metabolic syndrome, diabetes and hypertension.”
Many of the analysed studies found drinking at least one sugar-sweetened beverage a day was associated with elevated blood pressure.
The United Nations warned six years ago that chronic diseases posed a greater health risk than infectious diseases.
A 12-ounce can of Coca-Cola contains 39 grams of sugar and 140 calories.
Professor Essop added, “Excess sugar consumption has surfaced as one of the most prominent global dietary changes during the past few decades and is considered a primary driver of cardiometabolic diseases onset.”
The study was published in the Journal of the Endocrine Society.
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