Sugary drinks are piling on the pounds
An extra can of soda a day can pile on 15 pounds (7 kilograms) in a single year, and the evidence strongly suggests that this sort of increased consumption is a key reason that more people have gained weight, the researchers say.
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Soft drink trends have marched lock-step with the growing obesity epidemic, but industry groups have long fought efforts to say one directly caused the other. Not all studies conclude that beverages are at fault, and the new analysis ignored some that would have discounted such a link, the American Beverage Association said in a statement issued in response to the study.
"When it comes to beverage trends and obesity, "it's like documenting the force of gravity," he said. "There's an overwhelmingly strong case to be made for a causal relationship."
--Dr. David Ludwig, director of the obesity program at Children's Hospital in Boston