Can Sugary Beverages Impair Teens' Memory? New Study Says Yes

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Drinking sugary beverages every day doesn't sound like a good idea to begin with. But did you know it can actually impair teenagers' memory? Scientists used lab rats to test the effects of consuming drinks with high fructose corn syrup on a daily basis. The study found that after sugary beverage intake for a month, adolescent rats' ability to learn and remember information decreased.

The rats had been given amounts of sugar-sweetened beverages that mirrored the amount of sugar in common soft drinks, Science Daily reports. While the adult rats were not impacted by the sugary beverages, there was a clear influence on the adolescent rats.

The study's lead author Dr. Scott Kanoski from the University of Southern California explains,

Our findings reveal that consuming sugar-sweetened drinks is also interfering with our brain's ability to function normally and remember critical information about our environment, at least when consumed in excess before adulthood.

If this isn't enough to help wean you off your soda habit, just take a look at this TeenBeing post about CNN's photo project. The series matched up America’s best-selling drinks to snacks with comparable amounts of sugar. It's definitely an eye-opener!


Did you know there's a health and well-being magazine for teens? Learn more about Choices, and check out past articles about the dangers of soft drinks, including "Soda Shock."