Jenny Kane, AP
In this Dec. 25, 2018, file photo a person uses a soda fountain dispenser at the Back Bowl bowling alley in Eagle, Colo.

SALT LAKE CITY — Drinking soda and juice has been linked to increased cancer risk, according to a new study.

The new study found that drinking a small glass — 100 ml, which is about one-third of a can of soda — of a sugary drink, like juice or soda, led to an 18% increase in overall cancer risk and a 22% increase in breast cancer risk.

Yes, but: Researchers could only observe the effects, not establish cause and effect.

  • “The study uncovered links between the consumption of sugary drinks and the risk of cancer in general, and for breast cancer specifically,” according to WebMD’s report on the study. “The investigators found no association between sugary drinks and prostate or colon cancers, but the authors stressed that too few people in the study developed these cancers to make this finding definitive.”

Method: The research team collected data from 100,000 French men and women, who had an average age of 42. The participants answered questions about how much of more than 3,000 foods and beverages they consumed every day. The participants were asked these questions for nine years (from 2009 to 2018).

What they’re saying: "The results indicate statistically significant correlations between the consumption of sugar-sweetened drinks and risk of all cancers combined, and of breast cancer," said Ian Johnson, nutrition researcher and emeritus fellow at Quadram Institute Bioscience, according to CNN. "Surprisingly perhaps, the increased risk of cancer in heavier consumers of sugary drinks was observed even among consumers of pure fruit juice — this warrants more research.”

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  • "What we observed was that the main driver of the association seems to be really the sugar contained in these sugary drinks," said Mathilde Touvier, lead author of the study, according to CNN. "High sugary drinks consumption is a risk factor for obesity and weight gain, obesity is in itself a risk factor for cancer.”
  • "It's important for people to know that all beverages — either with sugar or without are safe to consume as part of a balanced diet," Danielle Smotkin, a spokesperson for the American Beverage Association said in a statement. "That said, America's leading beverage companies are working together to support consumers' efforts to reduce the sugar they consume from our beverages by providing more choices with less sugar or zero sugar, smaller package sizes and clear calorie information right up front."

Flashback: A study released back in February found that drinking two or more artificially sweetened drinks per day could lead to an increase in clot-based strokes and heart attacks. As I wrote, the risk was 16% higher for those who had diet sodas compared to those didn’t.