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Increased sugar consumption, particularly from sugar-sweetened beverages and high fructose corn syrup, has been linked to numerous health issues, including coronary heart disease, diabetes, and pancreatic cancer (1). Furthermore, it is associated with a wide range of cardiovascular, endocrine, metabolic, and neuropsychiatric disorders (2). Consuming over 25 grams of sugar per day can lead to these adverse health outcomes (3).

Sugar-sweetened beverages, such as carbonated and non-carbonated soft drinks, fruit drinks, and sports and energy drinks, have been connected to higher ectopic fatty accumulation and increased body weight (4). Drinking more than one serving of these beverages per week is linked to higher rates of breast, prostate, and pancreatic tumors (5). Additionally, each extra 250mL/day of sugar-sweetened beverage increases the risk of gout by 4%, the risk of coronary heart disease by 17%, and the risk of all-cause mortality by 4% (6).

Added sugars in one's diet can also cause fatty liver disease and fat development in muscle tissue (7). Increased sugar intake has been linked to higher LDL cholesterol levels, childhood obesity, and latent autoimmune diseases in adults (8). Research has found that a 25g/day increase in fructose consumption correlates with a 22% increase in pancreatic cancer (9).

To mitigate the negative impact of sugar on health, it is advised to limit sugar-sweetened beverage consumption to less than one serving per week (approximately 200-355 mL/week) (10).

High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is a major factor behind the increase in chronic diseases and related comorbidities that contribute to infectious disease mortality (11). HFCS is commonly added to various products in the Standard American Diet and is deliberately designed to be addictive (12). The higher ratio of fructose to glucose in HFCS has been found to cause neural and physiological changes linked to addictive and metabolic diseases (13).

Excess sugar intake can also damage cell membranes by deteriorating their lipid composition, converting excess sugars to fatty acids that disrupt the balance of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) (14). This imbalance puts stress on the mitochondria, impairing their efficiency and contributing to ongoing fatigue and tiredness (15). Consuming sugary drinks to combat this fatigue only perpetuates a vicious cycle of disease and energy loss (16).

In conclusion, it is essential to adopt a balanced diet that focuses on whole, unprocessed foods and limits added sugars to promote overall health and well-being (17).


  • Liu L, et al. High dietary sugar consumption and large numbers of health outcomes: an umbrella review of systematic reviews and meta-analyses. Br J Nutr. 2022;127(4):547-568.

  • Ibid.

  • Ibid.

  • Malik VS, et al. Sugar-sweetened beverages and weight gain in children and adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Am J Clin Nutr. 2013;98(4):1084-1102.

  • Chazelas E, et al. Sugary drink consumption and risk of cancer: results from NutriNet-Santé prospective cohort. BMJ. 2019;366:l2408.

  • Singh GM, et al. Estimated global, regional, and national disease burdens related to sugar-sweetened beverage consumption in 2010. Circulation. 2015;132(8):639-666.

  • Abdelmalek MF, et al. Increased fructose consumption is associated with fibrosis severity in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. Hepatology. 2010;51(6):1961-1971.

  • Liu L, et al. High dietary sugar consumption and large numbers of health outcomes: an umbrella review of systematic reviews and meta-analyses. Br J Nutr. 2022;127(4):547-568.

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