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Soda kills: Sugary drinks blamed for 180K deaths a year, researchers say

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Step away from the soda. Researchers say sugary drinks are to blame for the deaths of 180,000 around the world — each year.

USA Today reports that one of every 100 deaths of obese people each year is linked to sugary drink consumption. Diabetes is a big factor that played into the finding. Of that, about 25,000 are American adults, the report says.

The findings were made public at an American Heart Association conference in New Orleans, USA Today says.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has underscored the health risks of sugary beverages in his push to ban large sodas in the Big Apple.

Mexico tops the list of most deaths-by-soda for large nations, USA Today says. The United States and Japan fare better. They have the lowest per-capita consumption sugar-filled beverages and therefore, the lowest drink-related death statistic, USA Today reports.

Overall, World Health Organization data determined that 78 percent of soda-type fatalities stemmed from lower- and middle-class countries.

And three-quarters of the deaths were found to have stemmed from diabetes, the report say. Researchers say "that limiting sugary-beverage intake is an important step in reducing diabetes deaths," as cited by USA Today.

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