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These Drinks Are Causing You to Age Faster, New Research Says

And they may not be what you think...

Some skin and beauty pros believe that when lines around the eyes grow evident, this can be due, at least in part, to a fondness for wine and other alcohol. Alcoholic beverages do often get the blame for being the absolute worst for disease and aging—however, a new European study reveals an entirely different category of drinks that may be a threat to the healthy years you have to look forward to.

For a study published last week in Current Nutrition Reports, a team of medical researchers in Turkey and Spain observed what they called "the gap between lifespan and 'health span,' the disease-free lifespan."

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In other words, they recognized that while, on average, humans tend to live longer than in ages past, data suggest that doesn't mean all of us are entirely healthy up until the end of our lives. One major factor affecting aging and wellness, of course, is one's diet.

Sugar-sweetened beverages

soda
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So, after their review of past studies, the research team concluded that one particular diet influence that affects health and longevity is sugar-sweetened beverages—they reported: "[…C]onsumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB), a major source of added sugars, predicts poor health outcomes in the aging population, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer."

The scientific reasoning behind this, as they explain it, is that sugar-sweetened beverages are associated with oxidative stress and chronic inflammation (which can both result in disease), insulin resistance (often leading to diabetes), and an upset in the gut's microbiota—which science continues to show can affect general physical wellness, including mood and psychological health.

The medical researchers state that replacing sugar-sweetened drinks with healthier beverages "may be a reasonable option to reduce the burden of chronic disease in the aging population and even prolong life and healthspan."

Keep reading for just a few ideas for healthier drinks you could start to swap in…

1

Tea

Courtesy of Sound

Research suggests tea delivers so many health benefits. For recent discoveries, read Drinking This Tea May Protect You Against Kidney Stones, New Study Says and Drinking This Tea Can Help You Burn Fat in Your Sleep, Study Shows.

(If you're looking for a new tea product to try, some of our editorial team have been enjoying Sound—an all-natural, zero-sugar, zero-calorie sparkling tea that's flavored with fruit and botanicals… nothing else.)

2

Seltzer Water

Spindrift sparkling water
Courtesy of Spindrift

In 2019, the New York Times reported that seltzer sales had grown 210% over the previous year. Seltzer water has never been a more appealing option for consumers—read One Major Effect of Drinking Seltzer Water, Science Says to learn some reasons why.

(A favorite among our team is Spindrift, again for the all-natural ingredients, low sugar, and low-calorie content.)

3

All-Natural Juice

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As detailed in The Verdict on How Healthy Fruit Juice Actually Is, Says New Study, not all juice is bad. One main caution to watch out for is simply added sugar.

Some juices can actually be great for your health, like this one, according to a nutritionist.

4

Water

glass water
Shutterstock

Yes, it may seem obvious, but here are a few insights to stay educated about hydrating with water:

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Krissy Gasbarre
Krissy is a senior news editor at Eat This, Not That!, managing morning and weekend news related to nutrition, wellness, restaurants and groceries (with a focus on beverages), and more. Read more
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