Objective. Sugar-sweetened soft drinks contain large amounts of fructose, which may significantly increase serum uric acid levels and the risk of gout. Our objective was to evaluate the relationship between sugar-sweetened soft drink intake, diet soft drink intake, and serum uric acid levels in a nationally representative sample of men and women. Methods. Using data from 14,761 participants age ≥20 years from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (1988-1994), we examined the relationship between soft drink consumption and serum uric acid levels using linear regression. Additionally, we examined the relationship between soft drink consumption and hyperuricemia (serum uric acid level >7.0 mg/dl for men and >5.7 mg/dl for women) using logistic regression. Intake was assessed by a food-frequency questionnaire. Results. Serum uric acid levels increased with increasing sugar-sweetened soft drink intake. After adjusting for covariates, serum uric acid levels associated with sugar-sweetened soft drink consumption categories (<0.5, 0.5-0.9, 1-3.9, and ≥4 servings/day) were greater than those associated with no intake by 0.08, 0.15, 0.33, and 0.42 mg/dl, respectively (95% confidence interval 0.11, 0.73; P < 0.001 for trend). The multivariate odds ratios for hyperuricemia according to the corresponding sweetened soft drink consumption levels were 1.01, 1.34, 1.51, and 1.82, respectively (P = 0.003 for trend). Diet soft drink consumption was not associated with serum uric acid levels or hyperuricemia (multivariate P > 0.13 for trend). Conclusion. These findings from a nationally representative sample of US adults suggest that sugar-sweetened soft drink consumption is associated with serum uric acid levels and frequency of hyperuricemia, but diet soft drink consumption is not.
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