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HealthExtra: Cola may pack a kidney punch

Want to save your kidneys? Laying off the cola may help. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences researchers asked more than 900 people—about half recently diagnosed with kidney disease and a similar number who were healthy—about the types of beverages they drank and how often they drank them. Study participants who drank two or more servings of cola a day had more than twice the risk of kidney disease. Diet and sugar-sweetened colas had the same risk. However, risk didn’t increase for people who drank two or more noncola beverages a day. Authors of the study, published in the journal Epidemiology, suggest the culprit may be cola’s phosphoric acid content. Citric acid is used in other beverages.