Diet drinks linked with heart disease, death

Women who drink the most diet sodas may also be more likely to develop heart disease and even to die, according to a new study published Saturday.

Researchers found women who drank two or more diet drinks a day were 30 percent more likely to have a heart attack or other cardiovascular “event,” and 50 percent more likely to die, than women who rarely touch such drinks.

The findings, being presented at a meeting of the American College of Cardiology, don’t suggest that the drinks themselves are killers. But women who toss back too many diet sodas may be trying to make up for unhealthy habits, experts say.

“Our study suggests an association between higher diet drink consumption and mortality,” said Dr. Ankur Vyas, a cardiovascular disease expert at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinic, who led the study.

“It’s not an extreme risk,” he added.

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Around 45% of UK graduates cannot pay back student loans

In a dramatic reassessment of UK student finance, the government estimates around 45 percent of graduates will be unable to pay back their loans. The shortfall could cancel out the profits made by the disputed tripling of tuition fees in 2012.

British Universities Minister David Willetts has said that the amount of graduates who will fail to pay back their student loans has greatly exceeded previous estimates. Before tuition fees were increased threefold in 2012, the government predicted that only 28 percent of loans would ever be paid back. However, in light of projections for the coming years, the government has reassessed this figure and almost doubled it to 45 percent.