Sugary Beverages Could Increase Colon Cancer Risk



Consuming sugary beverages like soda, flavored coffees and energy drinks could increase your risk of cancer death.

Sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) are among the leading sources of added sugars in the United States. People who regularly consume sugary drinks are more likely to be overweight or obese.

New Study Links Sugary Beverages and Cancer Risk

Researchers looked at data starting from 1982 where 934,000 cancer-free participants provided information about beverages they consumed over the next 34 years. By 2016, about 135,000 participants had died from cancer.

People who drank sugar-sweetened drinks had an increased risk of obesity-related cancers and an increased risk for kidney and colon cancer. Artificially sweetened beverages also increased patients’ cancer risk. Participants who drank beverages with artificial sweeteners were more likely to develop pancreatic cancers.

Regular Exercise Prevents Colon Cancer

You can reduce your risk of colon cancer by making exercise a priority. Even low-impact activities can elevate your heart rate and burn calories. Therefore, it’s important to incorporate strength, endurance, balance and flexibility into your workouts.

Here are some examples of low-impact activities that might help you maintain a healthy weight:

  • Swimming — Known as the “no impact” workout, swimming is ideal for all age groups. Even adults with arthritis and back pain can swim without straining their muscles and joints.
  • Walking — Experts agree that walking may be the best activity for older adults. Daily walking can help prevent chronic conditions and help people lose weight. Walking can also improve mental health, so get outside and walk every day.
  • Yoga — Combining balance, flexibility and strength, yoga focuses on coordination and stabilizing the core. Improving stability can prevent falls and fractures in older age.
  • Strength training — Whether you use dumbbells, resistance bands or just your body weight, strength training is essential for maintaining and building muscle mass.

Nutrition and Colon Cancer Prevention

A healthy diet is another crucial factor in preventing colon cancer. Consuming sugary drinks, processed food, red meat and fatty foods can put you at risk for obesity and many cancers. If you are struggling to lose or maintain a healthy weight, talk to your doctor about developing a nutritious diet.

Schedule Your Colonoscopy at Age 45

Most cases of colon cancer are preventable with routine screenings. According to the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, adults at average risk for colon cancer should begin screening at age 45. However, it’s vital to know colon cancer affects people of all ages. You should begin screening earlier if you have a family or personal history of colon cancer or colon polyps. You should also see your doctor, whatever your age, if you have digestive symptoms (including changes in bowel habits, blood in your stool and abdominal pain), which may be a sign of colon cancer.

Although there are many colon cancer screening methods, colonoscopy is the most effective because it allows your gastroenterologist to examine the entire colon and remove precancerous growths called polyps.

Locate a Gastroenterologist Near You

A gastroenterologist is a physician who has specialty training in digestive health and disease. Have you had a colonoscopy? If not, it’s time to make an appointment. Our colon cancer screening centers are located throughout the country. Locate a screening center near you and make an appointment today.