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Study links soda consumption to higher mortality risk among breast cancer patients

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Buffalo, NY — Breast cancer patients who regularly drink sugar-sweetened beverages may face an increased risk of death from any cause – including breast cancer itself, results of a recent study by researchers from the University at Buffalo show.

The researchers analyzed data from the Western New York Exposures and Breast Cancer Study, which followed 927 female breast cancer patients ages 35 to 79 for a median of nearly 19 years. A food frequency questionnaire gauged participants’ food and beverage consumption in the one to two years preceding their breast cancer diagnosis.

Findings show that the participants who reported drinking sugar-sweetened, non-diet soda at least five times a week were 62% more likely to die from any cause than those who never or seldom consumed the beverages. Additionally, those in the former group were 85% more likely to die from breast cancer.

Overall, 41% of the participants died by the end of the follow-up period.

 

“There are more than 3.5 million breast cancer survivors alive in the United States today,” Jo L. Freudenheim, senior study author and professor at the UB School of Public Health and Health Professions, said in a news release. “We need to better understand the factors that affect their health. While we need more studies to confirm our findings, this study provides evidence that diet may impact longevity of women after breast cancer.”

The study was published online March 2 in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention – a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

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