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Sweetened Drinks Associated With Higher Risk of Depression

What you drink may have an impact on your mental health. A new study has found that individuals who drank 4 or more cans of soda a day were 30% more likely to suffer from depression than those who drank no soda.

Conversely, those who drank 4 cups of coffee per day were 10% less likely to develop depression than those who drank no coffee.

The study included 250,000 individuals who were followed for ten years. The researchers found that the risk of depression was highest in people who drank diet soda, iced tea and fruit punches. They suggested that people may want to cut down the number of sweetened drinks in their diets or replace them with unsweetened coffee.

The study was conducted by researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). It was presented at the American Academy of Neurology's 65th Annual Meeting in San Diego the week of January 15, 2013.

Beyond mental health, previous studies have shown that coffee has a number of other health benefits. These benefits are generally attributed to the powerful antioxidants found in coffee called polyphenols and include reducing the risk of developing diabetes, prostate cancer, cirrhosis and oral cavities.

One note to coffee drinkers: be careful how you take your coffee. A double latte with whipped cream and three sugars may provide health benefits, but the high fat and sugar content can have other negative effects.

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