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ACC: Diet Drink Consumption Tied to Higher CVD Risk

Findings in healthy postmenopausal women who drink two or more diet drinks a day

MONDAY, March 31, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- There is an association between higher diet drink intake and cardiovascular disease (CVD) and mortality in postmenopausal women, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology, held from March 29 to 31 in Washington, D.C.

Ankur Vyas, M.D., from the University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics in Iowa City, and colleagues analyzed data from 59,614 women (mean age, 62.8 years) free from existing CVD participating in the Women's Health Initiative Observational Study. The primary outcome included a composite of incident coronary heart disease, congestive heart failure, myocardial infarction, coronary revascularization procedure, ischemic stroke, peripheral arterial disease, and CVD death.

The researchers found that, over a follow-up of 8.69 years, for women consuming at least two diet drinks per day, 8.5 percent experienced the primary composite outcome. The incidence was 6.9, 6.8, and 7.2 percent for those consuming five to seven/week, one to four/week, and zero to three/month, respectively. Women who consumed at least two diet drinks per day had a higher risk of CVD events (hazard ratio [HR], 1.3), CVD mortality (HR, 1.5) and overall mortality (HR, 1.3), compared to the zero to three/month group, even after adjusting for known CVD risk factors.

"Our findings are in line with and extend data from previous studies showing an association between diet drinks and metabolic syndrome," Vyas said in a statement. "We were interested in this research because there was a relative lack of data about diet drinks and cardiovascular outcomes and mortality."

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