Soft drinks could raise risk of depression, says survey

New research has found that consuming soft drinks increases the risk of depression, reports

The study, conducted by US researchers, questioned 265,000 men and women over an extended period. It found that drinking four or more soft drinks a day raises the risk of depression by 30 per cent.

It also discovered that there was even a greater risk for diet versions of the soft drinks, which the researchers claim may be due to the presence of sweetener aspartame. However, aspartame was yesterday (Wednesday 9th January) judged to be safe for consumption by the European Food Safety Authority, after a review took place.

Talking about the data, researcher Honglei Chen told "While our findings are preliminary and the underlying biological mechanisms are not known, they are consistent with a small but growing body of evidence suggesting that artificially sweetened beverages may be associated with poor health."

Those coping to deal with depression, or depressive thoughts, may want to take up a counselling course to help them deal with the psychological issues behind the illness.

As an alternative to the soft drink, it was recommended that participants drink coffee, as people who drank it were 10 per cent less likely to be depressed that non-coffee drinkers.