It’s in the foods you eat and beverages you drink, and now a new study finds too much sugar in your diet can lead to fatal heart problems.

The associated press reports that researchers found it doesn’t take much extra sugar to substantially raise one’s risk of dying from a heart problem. For someone who normally eats 2,000 calories daily, consuming just two 12-ounce cans of soda substantially increases the risk.

Two cans of soda

For those who got more the equivalent of two cans of soda out of 2,000 calories daily the risk of heart problems was almost 20% higher than the safest level.

The study’s lead author, Quanhe Yang of the U.S. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, calls the results sobering and said it’s the first nationally representative study to examine the issue.

Yang and colleagues analyzed national health surveys between 1988 and 2010 that included questions about people’s diets. The authors used national death data to calculate risks of dying during 15 years of follow-up.

Adults who got at least 25 percent of their calories from added sugar were almost three times more likely to die of heart problems than those who consumed the least — less than 10 percent.

For those who got more than 15 percent — or the equivalent of about two cans of sugary soda out of 2,000 calories daily — the risk was almost 20 percent higher than the safest level.

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