Don't believe the headlines: Water won't keep diabetes away

There are lots of things you can do right now to slash your risk of diabetes -- but drinking more water isn't one of them.

It's so obvious -- or should be so obvious -- that I feel ridiculous even saying it, but Harvard researchers claim that women who drink a cup of this miracle elixir a day can cut their diabetes risk by 7 or 8 percent.

That's quite the trick when you consider that water doesn't contain much of anything. But of course, there's a catch to this.

There's always a catch, right?

The reduced risk only kicks in when that cup of water replaces a cup of garbage, like soda.

In other words, if you don't drink any sugary drinks, adding a cup of water to your day isn't going to do a thing for your diabetes risk. And if you do drink soda, replacing it with water can cut your risk -- but it's not because of the water.

It's because you're drinking one less cup of crud a day.

So, it's really just a fancy way of delivering the same common-sense advice I've been giving all along: If you want to cut your disease risk, cut the junk out of your diet.

Don't just replace one cup of soda or juice with water. Replace all your sugar-sweetened beverages with better choices -- and it doesn't have to be water.

Heck, I never drink water myself.

Coffee and tea are much better choices, and the study found they can slash your risk even further than plain old water -- up to 17 percent, but only if you don't add sugar to them.

As far as I'm concerned, THAT should've been the headline from the new study -- not this nonsense over water.