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back to article Drink diet pop all the time? Look forward to VASCULAR DEATH

News today calculated to disgruntle many a Reg reader – and some Reg hacks – as it has been revealed by boffinry that the daily glugging down of "diet" soft drinks increases the risk of "vascular events such as stroke, heart attack, and vascular death". "Our results suggest a potential association between daily diet soft drink …

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Maybe...

Maybe they were drinking diet drinks because they were fatties* and that was the reason for an increase in vascular death?

*No offence intended, I'm also a fatty

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yeah

yeah. as the reg author says, the weakness of studies like this is the fact that it's almost impossible to definitely exclude some other factor being the cause of the correlation you're observing, because there's so many of the fucking things. The belt-and-braces approach, where your scientists can point with some kind of confidence to an actual physiological cause of the effect they claim their statistical study identifies, is always somewhat more convincing.

(Otherwise you could end up doing a large statistical survey and concluding that owning a Mercedes is highly likely to cause one's income to grow - after all, all these people with high incomes seem to have Mercedes!)

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"as the reg author says, the weakness of studies like this is the fact that it's almost impossible to definitely exclude some other factor being the cause of the correlation you're observin"

it would be nice if the ones that were excluded are reported. For example maybe they ruled out the "fatties" in this case. Most media articles will just tell you what the scientists "found" though without explaining that they ruled out several alternative explanations.

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Anonymous Coward

Read The Friendly Abstract

Quoting from the linked abstract:-

"KEY RESULTS

Controlling for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, smoking, physical activity, alcohol consumption, BMI, daily calories, consumption of protein, carbohydrates, total fat, saturated fat, and sodium, those who drank diet soft drinks daily (vs. none) had an increased risk of vascular events, and this persisted after controlling further for the metabolic syndrome, peripheral vascular disease, diabetes, cardiac disease, hypertension, and hypercholesterolemia (HR = 1.43, 95% CI = 1.06–1.94). There was no increased risk of vascular events associated with regular soft drinks or light diet soft drink consumption."

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Bronze badge

What about other drinks?

Diet sodas are diuretic in nature. Drink them predominantly and you will spend much of your life dehydrated. Drink them regularly but add in a couple of liters of water and you don't. Also the sodas don't do much for helping your relevant organs remove stuff that shouldn't be hanging around in your body and pissing it away.

This may well be a shortage of hydrating drinks rather than an excess of dr pepper zero.

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Also worth noting if anyone goes through a lot of diuretics, some very important minerals can be depleted from your system as well as the potential dehydration. Speaking as someone who has seen a family member suffering from Potassium / Sodium deficiency, it's a fucking terrifying thing to see (not least because symptoms can be similar to that of a stroke.)

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Weekness of correlation?

Simpson's quote time

Dr. S: "Wait! Did you know that there's a direct correlation between the decline of Spirograph and the rise in gang activity? Think about it."

Bart: "I will."

Dr. S: "No, you won't."

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Mushroom

Large Big Mac Meal....

......with a Diet Coke.

Or as I saw in the coffee shop the other day, "Skinny Late" and " that piece of cake". The piece of cake in question being a slice of chocolate fudge cake the size of New Mexico.

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@Large Big Mac Meal....

I take the point but is it better than A full fat Latte and a slice of cake?

A better survey would be is it better to drink full sugar pop and acquire the health problems of excess weight or drink sugar free pop and get the health problems of artificial sweetners.

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But

Maybe they prefer the taste of skinny lattes to full-fat ones?

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Headmaster

"the size of New Mexico"? What's that in British Standard Wales?

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Devil

Not necessarily

There are two parts of the human body which take sugar, sugar and pretty much solely sugar for energy - heart and brain.

Leaving the brain topic aside, I am not surprised that something that pretends to be sugar-y while delivering no sugar is bad for your heart.

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Skinny Latte

Well, to be fair, a lot of people (including myself) buy skinny latte's because the skim milk froths up better and the resultant coffee is not so heavy.

In every other case though I wouldn't touch reduced fat dairy products of *any* description with a ten foot pole.

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Go

http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=121600+square+miles&lk=1

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@ Mike 140

Roughly, 15 Wales

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>> "the size of New Mexico"? What's that in British Standard Wales?

http://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=%28area+of+New+Mexico%29+%2F+%28area+of+Wales%29

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Pint

Oh....

Eat healthy, exercise, die anyway.

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the correlation between exercise and death is nearly 100%. My sample is a randomly selected 1000 individuals from the 17th century.

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Happy

Nearly 100%?

Wow! So with 1000 people, 99.99% corrolation - that means theres at least 1 of them running around - be interesting to meet them!

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Anonymous Coward

@PaulW

Nah, they are a boring old fart. Completely out of touch with the modern world.

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Mushroom

yeah ...Life is FATAL , with lots of choices on the way to being recycled into something else.

life is unfortunately a fatal disease , where for the majority of humans, our actions or lack of them have a large effect when we toddle off from this mortal coil.

i.e. :-

drink diet / non diet full of sugar pop

drink alcohol

smoke

do dangerous sports, or just cycle in London

eat too much refined carbohydrate

eat too much meat

don't exercise enough

don't eat enough fresh veg and fruit

stress yourself out from too much bollocks from health freaks who think they're going to live forEVAH!

and you'll probably die sooner than the should .

Life is a shit , and then you die.

but just remember , we all get recycled into something else , whether we rot in the ground or go up in smoke, and next time we might be recycled into something better (or worse) . Who knows ? :-D

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Zombies, et al.

The Living dead technically are not living or dead, hence the statistical anomalies. So stop running around fact checking...you'll only die tired!

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Thumb Up

@PaulW

"that means theres at least 1 of them running around"

Maybe it's a kind of magic, but as we all know, there can be only one.

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Stop

OK, everyone

take a Red Bull and wait for the next study which highlights the details that the first study missed.

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Holmes

Aspartame

Nuff said...

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Flame

Which part of aspartame?

The fact it decays into formaldehyde if stored at room temperature or

the fact the other decay product is methanol?

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@Ian Stephenson

Brilliant facts. Except that neither are actually facts.

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@Jason Hall

Oh really and your rebuttal is ?

A simple google of aspartame formaldehyde - discounting any wikibased entries to avoid being accused of "wikisalting" produces (amongst others):

http://suewidemark.freeservers.com/aspartame-formaldhyde.htm

This experiment was conducted in 1997. It has been repeated many times and yet, ignored by Monsanto and the FDA. The study proves that there are significant amounts of the chemical, formaldehyde in Diet Coke - more if the pop has been stored at room temperatures or higher (and it's often stored in hot warehouses in the South and Southwest). A 2000 JAMA study established that intaking even trace amounts of formaldehyde, can cause damage to several areas of the body, yet this is Monsanto's excuse - "yes we know diet pop has formaldehyde in it but it's in such small amounts as to not be dangerous". Aspartame/Nutrasweet is in some 6000 foods and OTC medications. Formaldehyde is on the FDA list of cancer causing chemicals. On some foods, nutrasweet is not listed however, all foods having nutrasweet in them must carry a warning about "phenoketinuria". If you see this warning, you might want to say "no" to the food or medication.

Now put up or shutup.

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@Ian

What? You are the one making the claim, not I. It is you who must supply the evidence to prove your assertions.

You will also need a much more reliable source than that tinfoil-hat website you linked.

"Now put up or shutup" <- No. You. See what I did there?

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FAIL

@Jason Hall

Monsanto's excuse - "yes we know diet pop has formaldehyde in it but it's in such small amounts as to not be dangerous".

Guess you're too busy to actually read the post?

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Megaphone

Monsanto

Monsanto's Aspartame is the most dangerous poison they use against us.

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you are forgetting the chemtrails

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Alien

Not to mention the alien DNA in the egg yolk using in MILKY WAY CANDY BARS.

"multi-ethnic urban population"

So, blacks and latinos chilling in their respective 'hoods? Safe, I am!

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Anonymous Coward

not to mention

artificially sweetened drinks taste funky as hell. tho i think i read an article.. maybe it was on this very site.. that its something to do with mouth feel? aspartame feels like liquid shit and real sugar doesn't. something like that. either way i wont have it.

If I'm treating myself to a soft drink then i want the real thing goddamnit. whats the point of a treat that you have every day, where the main element that makes it a treat has been removed? people are really fucking dumb.

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FAIL

phew

Making the large assumption that everything that swirls in your head is correct - so their "most dangerous poison", if ingested DAILY over a LARGE AMOUNT OF TIME "might" "possibly" cause "increased risk" of heart disease?

Their most dangerous poison is pretty harmless, probably less harmful than living in a city centre?

FAIL, because... well, you do, don't you?

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Anonymous Coward

In the morning, citizen!

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This post has been deleted by its author

Point taken.

Speaking as a diabetic, my choices when contemplating a sweetened liquid treat tend to revolve around something containing sugar vs not having to be carbohydrate free for the next six hours.

I tend to prefer solid food and having hamburgers that aren't bun-free.

I don't know about drink texture either. After a couple years of diet pop, I seriously can't tell the difference anymore. Mountain Dew vs the Diet version, side by side, I absolutely can't tell them apart anymore.

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@ac 18:52

"If I'm treating myself to a soft drink then i want the real thing goddamnit. whats the point of a treat that you have every day, where the main element that makes it a treat has been removed?"

Maybe because the caffeine and taste haven't been removed from my daily coke zero?

What's that? You didn't realise that some people have different tastes and are looking for different things from the same product?

Well there you go, you've learned something new today.

You're welcome!

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re: not to mention

On the rare occassion that I will drink something fizzy, I'll normally choose Diet Coke/Pepsi over regular, as they taste sweeter, and thus are more enjoyable. At least to me, anyway. But it's a rare thing, like if I'm at the cinema, or have taken the kids to MacDonalds.

If anyone's interested, I do indeed have the body of the diet coke window cleaner.

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Headmaster

A vascular outcome?

Still trying to get my head around that one.

Perhaps a cerebral outcome will be along soon...

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Devil

Is this the same sort of study that found that saccharine was bad for you only for it to be later reported that you needed to drink an olympic sized swimming pool* of it every day to have the desired fatal effect (ok slight exageration 1800 litres)

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Pint

No its not!

See:

http://aspartame.mercola.com/

Or just search apartame dangers, or side-effects

This sort of news has been going around for years, its only just got past the drug companies censors

At least beer doesn't contain it

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Anonymous Coward

mercola.com = Crankville central

"How to remove all the mercury from your body in 3 weeks" and other BS cranky articles, most of which would be banned from publication in the UK due to lack of empirical data to back up their claims.

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FAIL

Mercola.com?

It's a hive of quackery, conspiracy and utter misinformation.

I'm not going to say aspartame is completely harmless, because I don't know. But never, never, ever get your information from mercola.com.

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FAIL

"its only just got past the drug companies censors"

... in the last 10 - 15 years...

Even before I found my way blinking and quivering onto this 'ere interweb thingy, someone at work passed round a leaflet all about Monsanto, their evil empire, aspartame and how it caused Gulf War Syndrome due to being left outside in the Kuwaiti heat and turning into cans of pure formaldeyhde.

The censors have obviously been far more active round your neck of the woods...

Now, where's that last can of Diet Coke gone..?

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Silver badge

diet drinks

My experience of diet drinks is that they are horribly over-sweet, presumably because the people who order them are the ones who have a sweet tooth in the first place. It's hard to see how they could get a control group for a test like this, without forcing diet drinks on a random selection of people for years. yuk.

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Mushroom

sweet ? really ?

you found them sweet ?

I always found them to be horrible, initially sort of sweet, and then not.

A bit like seeing a really attractive girl who smiles at you,

comes up to you , you think she is up for a kiss, and then

she knees you in the gonads.

The only thing they're useful for is increasing Monsanto and their ilks profit margins,

and I don't really give a s*** about them.

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Silver badge

Metastudy trash.

Start with a largish number of people in your study, begin whittling and compartmenting them by gender, race, age, physical health and so forth until you've whittled them down into tiny, tiny boxes and an apparent correlation appears. Blow the correlation up to claim it's significant, publish your study implying the initial number of participants is the only number that matters, claim a big grant and walk away laughing. Repeat next year and find the opposite conclusion. Fame and fortune await.

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Gimp

Fizzy drinks anoraking

One of the saddest things is that many non diet soft drinks now use sweeteners in their ingredients because they are cheaper than sugar. Try buying some lemonade for example. Go down the ingredients and sweeteners will probably be in there somewhere.

An occasional treat as a child was a glass of Cherryade. I've now learnt that if I buy a bottle these days it will be rubbish. Partly because I suspect many of the flavourings in the Corona Cherryade of old are probably now outlawed, but also because they have that unmistakable tinge of sweeteners.

In fact I think the only drinkable "diet" drink I've ever tasted was Tab Clear. And that got withdrawn. Ironic that Coca Cola seemed perfectly capable of making a decent diet Cola but they still persist with the vile Diet Coke.

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