Pregnant women who drink a lot of sugary beverages could be increasing their children’s risk of asthma. A new study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found a connection between the number of sweet, sugary drinks women consumed during pregnancy and their kids developing asthma between the ages of seven and nine. An average of two sweet drinks daily during pregnancy raised the asthma risk in kids by more than 60 percent, the study showed. The researchers analyzed data on 1,068 mother-child pairs participating in a study looking at how diet and other factors during pregnancy could affect a child’s health.
Researchers suspect that the fructose used to sweeten the drinks might promote inflammation in the body. They also found that kids who drank the most beverages sweetened with high fructose corn syrup were 64 percent more likely to develop asthma than kids who consumed the least. Here, all that sugar could have led to excess weight, a risk factor for asthma. Drinking fruit juice, which also contains fructose, didn’t present the same risk for asthma, the study showed.