New Study Finds No Link Between Soft Drink Consumption and Obesity

Study: Those Drinking Moderate Levels of Sweetened Beverages Not at Higher

Risk of Obesity

Aug 20, 2007, 01:00 ET from Corn Refiners Association

    WASHINGTON, Aug. 20 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new peer-reviewed
 study has found that those who frequently consume sweetened soft drinks do
 not have a higher obesity rate than those who rarely drink them.
     The study, published in this month's edition of Food and Chemical
 Toxicology, found higher obesity rates correlated with several other
 factors, such as the amount of time in front of the computer or TV, or the
 consumption of high amounts of dietary fat.
     But those who frequently consumed sweetened beverages -- usually
 containing high fructose corn syrup -- did not have a higher risk of
     "This study supports the notion that no single ingredient or component
 in our diets is the sole cause for the obesity rise in the US population,"
 said Dr. Mark Empie, one of the study's authors.
     The study is in line with previous research that shows no causal link
 between high fructose corn syrup and obesity. USDA data show that per
 capita consumption of high fructose corn syrup is declining, yet obesity
 and diabetes rates continue to rise. In addition, obesity rates are rising
 around the world, including in Mexico, Australia and Europe, even though
 the use of high fructose corn syrup outside of the United States is limited
 or nonexistent.
     Among the new study's findings:
     -- A higher physical activity level is related to a lower incidence of
     -- Television and computer screen watching time are related to increased
     -- High fat diets are related to an increased obesity incidence.
     -- Those who frequently consume sweetened beverages -- such as sweetened
        soft drinks and punch -- had similar obesity percentages compared to
        infrequent users.
     The study was conducted by the Nutritional and Scientific Affairs Group
 at the James R. Randall Research Center at the Archer Daniels Midland
 Company. It was authored by Empie, Vice President Regulatory & Scientific
 Affairs at Archer Daniels Midland; and Dr. Sam Z. Sun, Senior Nutrition
 Research Scientist at Archer Daniels Midland. Archer Daniels Midland is a
 member of the Corn Refiners Association.
     For the study, the researchers analyzed extensive data from the USDA
 Continuing Surveys of Food Intakes by Individuals, CDC National Health and
 Nutrition Examination Surveys and the Food Surveys Research Group. The
 study was peer-reviewed before its publication.
     "The findings were consistent across the various national data bases
 relating food consumption and obesity," Empie said. "To our knowledge, this
 is the first time that anyone has simultaneously and comparatively used all
 these different data bases to look at obesity, lifestyle factors and
 consumption of sweetened beverages."

SOURCE Corn Refiners Association