ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
Using Music and Sports to Improve Kids' Asthma
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Acupuncture Cuts Dry Mouth in Cancer Patients
Cranberries May Help Prevent Urinary Tract Infections
Higher Vitamin D Intake Could Cut Cancer Risk
ANIMAL CARE
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Beware of Dog Bites
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
BONES & JOINTS
New Clues to How Fish Oils Help Arthritis Patients
Arthritis Hits More Than Half of Diabetics
Resistance Training Boosts Mobility in Knee Arthritis Patients
CANCER
Broccoli May Help Battle Breast Cancer
Gene Studies Reveal Cancer's Secrets
Immune Therapy May Aid Kids With Neuroblastoma
CAREGIVING
Medication Errors Could Be Cut: Experts
Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome as Deadly as Ever
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
High Blood Fat Levels Common in Americans
Firefighters Have Narrower-Than-Normal Arteries, Study Finds
Tai Chi and Qigong Offer Many Health Benefits: Review
COSMETIC
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
DENTAL, ORAL
Biological Product Shows Promise Against Gum Disease
Good Oral Hygiene May Protect Against Heart Infections
Most Insured Adults Worry About Health Care Costs: Poll
DIABETES
Saliva Test Could Monitor Type 2 Diabetes
Insulin Resistance Tied to Peripheral Artery Disease
Doctors Urged to Screen Diabetics for Sleep Apnea
DIET, NUTRITION
Adults Need To Get Thier Food Facts Straight
Olive Oil May Be Key to Mediterranean Diet's Benefits
Is Coffee Good or Bad for Your Health?
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Gas Stove Emissions Boost Asthma in Inner-City Kids
Pesticides on Produce Tied to ADHD in Children
Arsenic in Drinking Water Raises Diabetes Risk
EYE CARE, VISION
Don't Lose Sight of Halloween Safety
Action-Filled Video Games Boost Adult Vision
Guard Kids' Eyes Against Long-Term Sun Damage
FITNESS
Super Bowl Loss Can 'Kill' Some Fans
More Steps a Day Lead to Better Health
Tai Chi: An Ideal Exercise for Many People with Diabetes
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
GENERAL HEALTH
Be Healthy, Spend Less
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
Play Creatively as a Kid, Be a Healthier Adult
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Ginkgo Won't Prevent Heart Attack, Stroke in Elderly
Irregular Heartbeat Tied to Alzheimer's Disease
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Chinese 'Devil Dung' Plant Could Be a Swine Flu Fighter
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Older People at Greater Risk of Swine Flu Death
6 Million U.S. Kids Lack Enough Vitamin D
Plastics Chemical Tied to Aggression in Young Girls
MEN'S HEALTH
Could Chinese Herb Be a Natural Viagra?
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
Low Iron Levels Cut Cancer Risk in Men With PAD
MENTAL HEALTH
Reminiscing Helps Build Emotional Strength
Heal Your LifeŽ Tips for Living Well
A Little Alcohol May Stave Off Alzheimer's
PAIN
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Placebo Acupuncture Tied to Higher IVF Pregnancies
Expectant Mom's Exercise Keeps Newborn's Birth Weight Down
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
SENIORS
Rapid Weight Loss in Seniors Signals Higher Dementia Risk
Life Expectancy in U.S. Hits New High
Video Gaming Just Might Fight Aging
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Prenatal Stress May Boost Baby's Asthma Risk
Frankincense Provides Relief for Osteoarthritis
Air Pollution Slows Women's Marathon Times
Add your Article

Sugary Colas Tied to Gestational Diabetes

(HealthDay News) -- Women who drink five or more servings of sugar-sweetened cola per week before they conceive increase their risk of developing diabetes during pregnancy, a new study indicates.

"Previous studies have shown an association with other chronic metabolic problems," said study author Dr. Liwei Chen, an assistant professor of epidemiology at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, in New Orleans. "This is the first to show an increased risk among pregnant women."

Gestational diabetes, known as glucose intolerance during pregnancy, is one of the most common complications of pregnancy. It increases the chances of lifelong diabetes for the woman and also can have permanent effects on the unborn child, Chen said. The report appears in the December issue of Diabetes Care.

"Other studies suggest that babies born to women who are diabetic during pregnancy have higher weight at birth and also higher rates of obesity and diabetes early in life," she added.

Chen, working with researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health and the U.S. National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, studied 10 years of medical records on a group of 13,475 women from the Nurses' Health Study II. After adjusting for known risk factors for gestational diabetes, such as age, family history and smoking, the researchers found that women who had more than five servings per week of sugar-sweetened cola beverages had a 22 percent higher risk of gestational diabetes than women who had less than one serving per month.

No such association was found for consumption of other sugar-sweetened beverages or artificially sweetened drinks.

It's not clear why only cola drinks are associated with the increased risk, Chen said. One explanation could be "the tremendous popularity of cola in the United States," she said.

The results are not conclusive, and "we need other studies to confirm our findings," Chen said. "We plan to study other populations, and we hope that other investigators start such studies."

But meanwhile, "I suggest that women reduce their intake of sugary beverages," she said. "Women need to be aware of the possible risk not only for their pregnancy but also of the long-term consequences for their babies."

Maureen Storey, senior vice president of science policy for the American Beverage Association, which represents soft drink companies, said she was skeptical about the findings.

"As with all epidemiological studies, the data do not show a cause-and-effect relationship," Storey said in a statement.

Sugar-sweetened beverage consumption has not been among the risk factors for gestational diabetes identified by "leading scientific bodies," Storey added.

"The key to a healthy pregnancy is seeking good medical care and having a healthy lifestyle before and during pregnancy," the statement said. "This includes eating a variety of foods and beverages in moderation along with getting regular physical activity."

According to the journal report, there are several potential explanations for the association. For example, sugar-rich foods or beverages can overload the body with glucose, which can impair the function of the beta cells of the pancreas, which make insulin that metabolizes glucose.

Sugar-sweetened beverages are the leading source of added sugar in the American diet, Chen said. The U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that soft drink intake more than doubled between 1977 and 2001 among 19- to 39-year-old Americans, going from 4.1 percent to 9.8 percent, and that those in this age group had the highest rate of soft drink consumption.

SOURCES: Liwei Chen, M.D., assistant professor, epidemiology, Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center, New Orleans; Dec. 1, 2009, statement, American Beverage Association, Washington, D.C.; December 2009, Diabetes Care Published on: December 02, 2009