While diet sodas are gaining more popularity among individuals worried about their calorie intake, a new study finds these drinks are linked to kidney problems.
According to the study presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Nephrology in San Diego, drinking two or more diet sodas per day doubles the risk of developing impaired kidney function.
A 30 percent drop was reported in the glomerular filtration rate (GFR), an index determining the function of the kidneys, of women who drank two or more artificially sweetened sodas per day.
"Thirty percent is considered significant,'' said lead researcher Julie Lin, adding that natural aging is associated with only 1 mL per minute per year decline in GFR. Drinking less than two sodas a day, however, does not affect kidney function in these women.
Scientists added that high salt intake is also associated with a faster decline in kidney function.