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Fizzical harm: Drinking sugary drinks doesn’t just pile on the pounds – it changes your body so it’s harder to lose weight

By Rob Waugh

  • Drinking sugary drinks for just a month  alters body chemistry
  • More difficult to lose weight
  • Body grows to ‘prefer’ sugar to digesting  own fat

Drinking sugared fizzy drinks for just a  month changes the body permanently so it’s more difficult to lose  weight.

The soft drinks don’t just pile on the pounds  because of the calories in them – they alter the way your body burns  fuel.

Your muscles grow to ‘prefer’ sugar to fat as  a fuel, and thus losing weight becomes harder.

Drinking sugary drinks could be even more  harmful than previously thought.

Soft drinks alter the way our muscles burn  fuel preferring sugar over fat which makes the pounds harder to  shift.

And worryingly this effect lasts long-term  which can raise levels of blood glucose leading to diabetes.

Dr Hans-Peter Kubis, of Bangor University,  said: ‘This study proves our concerns over sugary drinks have been  correct.

‘Not only can regular sugar intake acutely  change our body metabolism; in fact it seems that our muscles are able to sense  the sugars and make our metabolism more inefficient, not only in the present but  in the future as well.

‘This will lead a reduced ability to burn fat  and to fat gain. Moreover, it will make it more difficult for our body to cope  with rises in blood sugar.’

Dr Kubis warned the drinks can compromise  long term health and, when in need of refreshment, people should reach for water  instead.

His researchers also showed isolated muscle  cells identify and respond to the sugary diet, and switch how they use the  fuel.

‘Together with our findings about how  drinking soft drinks dulls the perception of sweetness, our new results  give a  stark warning against regularly drinking sugar sweetened  drinks.’

The move to an inefficient metabolism was  seen in male and female participants who were lightly active, and drinking soft  drinks for just four weeks.

These factors show that regular use of sugar  sweetened soft drinks drives alterations in muscles similar to those found in  people with obesity problems and type 2 diabetes.

Dr Kubis said: ‘What is clear is our body  adjusts to regular soft drink consumption and prepares itself for the future  diet by changing muscle metabolism via altered gene activity – encouraging  unhealthy adaptations similar to those seen in people with obesity problems and  type 2 diabetes.

‘Together with our findings about how  drinking soft drinks dulls the perception of sweetness, our new results  give a  stark warning against regularly drinking sugar sweetened drinks.’

In the study 11 people in their twenties took  part in a sugar sweetened soft drink supplementation for a month and before and  after had their blood and muscle tissue as well as their whole body metabolism  and composition tested.

Genes and proteins important for fat and  sugar metabolism were analysed and blood sugar and fats assessed.

As it turned out metabolism shifted towards  sugar away from using fat and genes for inefficient sugar metabolism were  activated and a particular factor which is known to be crucial for genes of  aerobic metabolism was reduced. Moreover the subjects gained fat and blood sugar  was elevated.

Dr Kubis said: ‘What we found is that it is  not the sugar in itselt that puts on weight but the way it gets the body to  store more. ‘This would relate to all  kinds of soft drinks with a high sugar content, including fruit juices.

‘It was a small study because it is difficult  to find young people who have not previously been exposed to a lot of soft  drinks and who are willing to undergo muscle biopsies.

‘But we are now hoping to carry out a bigger  study with more particpants over a longer period of time.’

He has been campaigning for the government to  take action to address the problem of soft drink consumption.

Added Dr Kubis: ‘Clearly taxation on sugary  drinks is overdue. This money could be invested in the NHS where it is urgently  needed to treat people with obesity problems and diabetes.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2176549/Drinking-sugary-drinks-doesnt-just-pile-pounds–changes-body-difficult-lose-weight.html#ixzz21PD8GBFb