The soft drink industry disputed the findings, however.
"The [study] authors are skipping several steps in trying to connect soft drinks with pancreatic cancer, including an allegation regarding an increase in insulin production," Richard Adamson, a consultant to the American Beverage Association and former scientific director of the NCI, said in a statement.
"The fact remains that soft drinks do not cause cancer, nor do any authoritative bodies, such as NCI, name soft drinks as a risk factor for pancreatic cancer," he added. "You can be a healthy person and enjoy soft drinks. The key to a healthy lifestyle is balance -- eating a variety of foods and beverages in moderation along with getting regular physical activity," Adamson added.
Others took a more cautious view.
"The bottom line is that limiting consumption of sugar-sweetened soft drinks can help in maintaining a healthy weight, which in turn will reduce risk of many types of cancer and other serious diseases," Jacobs said.
The U.S. National Cancer Institute has more on pancreatic cancer.
SOURCES: Colin D. Weekes, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of medicine, University of Colorado Denver; Noel Mueller, M.P.H., research associate, Georgetown University Medical Center, Washington, D.C.; Eric Jacobs, Ph.D., strategic director, pharmacoepidemiology, American Cancer Society; Richard Adamson, senior scientific consultant to the American Beverage Association and former scientific director and director of cancer etiology of the National Cancer Institute; February 2010 Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention
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