Drinking Diet Coke and similar low-calorie beverages could trigger deadly diabetes, scientists warn

DRINKING Diet Coke and similar beverages could trigger deadly diabetes, scientists have warned.

Experts found that low-calorie sweeteners affect gut bacteria in healthy people – leaving them unable to control blood sugar levels properly.

Getty Images – Getty1 Diet Coke could trigger diabetes, experts have warned

The University of Adelaide recruited 29 people without diabetes with around half given low calorie sweeteners.

The amount was the equivalent of 1.5 litres of diet drink a day and was given in capsules.

These were taken three times a day for two weeks while others on the trial were given a placebo.

Everyone who took part in the study had stool samples taken to check the type of micro-organisms in their poo.

Those on the diet drink capsules had much less 'good' bacteria in their faeces and the type that helps break down food also decreased.

There was also a rise in 'opportunistic' gut bacteria- this is the type that causes disease if not properly managed.

Another concern was the drop in bugs that help control blood glucose levels.

Weight-loss drug cuts diabetes risk

A WEIGHT-loss drug has been found to cut the risk of diabetes.

Researchers tested appetite suppressant lorcaserin on 12,000 pre- diabetes patients who were overweight or obese.

They found it reduced the chance of them developing full diabetes by 19 per cent.

It was also found to control high blood sugar in patients with diabetes.

The findings came a month after the same scientists reported lorcaserin was successful in helping obese people lose weight.

It is approved in the US but not in most European countries.


A decrease in this bacteria called Butyrivibrio corresponded with a drop in the release of the hormone GLP-1.

This hormone helps to control blood glucose levels.

The authors of the study said: "Our findings support the concept that sweeteners worsen blood sugar control in healthy subjects.”

However, other experts said people would have to drink five diet drinks a day to achieve the same effect.

Naveed Sattar, from the University of Glasgow, said: “This evidence will in no way stop me taking a can a day of a diet drink.”

The research was presented at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes in Berlin in Germany.

A previous study from universities in Israel and Singapore, found six common artificial sweeteners – aspartame, sucralose, saccharin, neotame, advantame and acesulfame potassium-k – to be toxic to gut bacteria.

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In a lab trial, all six of the sweeteners were exposed to bacteria that are commonly found in the gut, and these bacteria were then genetically modified to contain fluorescent compounds which glow when they detect toxins.

The scientists found that toxins were released when gut bacteria were exposed to each artificial sweetener, and it only took one mg/ml of the artificial sweeteners to turn the bacteria toxic.

A can of Diet Coke contains around 180mg of aspartame.

Ditch Diet Coke! Six artificial sweeteners in diet drinks are ‘TOXIC to your gut bacteria’
GPs are wrongly diagnosing diabetes patients who are older, say scientists.

A British study has found doctors are missing type 1 cases because they are fewer in number.

Instead, they are telling people diagnosed in their 30s onwards they have type 2 diabetes- the most common but milder type.

This is leading to delays in patients getting properly diagnosed- and is risky for their health.

Prime Minister Theresa May is a high-profile example of someone who has type 1 but was misdiagnosed with type 2.

Type 1 usually occurs in childhood and is triggered by the pancreas not producing any insulin.

Insulin production declines rapidly and severely in people with type 1.

It means they cannot manage their condition through diet, exercise and drugs.

This compares with type 2 diabetes which can be triggered by obesity and is much more common.

In type 2, the pancreas produces some insulin and the disease often is less damaging to the body.

The scientists based their findings on a study of nearly 1,000 people.

They looked at cases of people diagnosed over 30 and those told they had diabetes at a younger age.

In those diagnosed over the age of 30 nearly one in five (39%) did not get insulin when first diagnosed.

Nick Thomas, from the University of Exeter, said: “Getting the right diagnosis is important for these patients to receive the right education and treatment."

The study was presented at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes meeting in Berlin, Germany.

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