The Coca-Cola Myth--and the Truth. (Why is it so bad for you, really?)

My husband is so wonderful. He knows of my insatiable thirst for knowledge about healthy living and eating, so he routinely e-mails me interesting tidbits he comes across. Today, he e-mailed me this link:

http://www.snopes.com/cokelore/acid.asp

I'm sure we've all had the e-mail land in our inbox that claims Coke is bad for you because the acid in it is used to clean vehicle motors. I found this article about it to be interesting, but wrong on one point:

"...so the Coca-Cola is harmless."

The reason Coke is so bad for you is triple: the caffeine, the sugar, and the phosphoric acid.

Please consider the following:
Myths and Truths About Osteoporosis (Do high protein diets cause bone loss?): "The late distinguished physician, Dr. Melvin Page, demonstrated that sugar consumption upsets the natural homeostasis of calcium and phosphorus in the blood. Normally, these minerals exist in a precise ratio of ten to four. Sugar consumption causes serum phosphorus to decrease and calcium to rise. The excess serum calcium, which comes from the bones and teeth, cannot be fully utilized because phosphorus levels are too low. It is excreted in the urine or stored in abnormal deposits such as kidney stones and gallstones. Caffeine also upsets the natural balance of calcium and phosphorus, and causes increased calcium to be excreted in the urine. Phosphoric acid in soft drinks is a major cause of calcium deficiency in children and osteoporosis in adults. Aluminum from antacids, cans and pollution also contributes to bone loss."


This is true of any sugar-laden, caffeinated drink, but especially noticeable with soft drinks because of their wide-spread addictive use, and especially high sugar content.

In my opinion, they should be banned from schools, doctor's offices, and any public place, and not sold to anyone under the age of 18, just like other toxic drugs. (Hmm, I suppose the same could be said for coffee, although the sugar content is much lower. And supposedly, it actually has some redeeming qualities.)

Here is a site comparing the caffeine content of various sodas and drinks.

Am I giving up tea? No. But I have cut down. (Just in case anyone was wondering.)

Edit: Just in case you think you're doing your body a favour by opting for the sugar-free "diet" colas, or the new Coke C2, which all replace sugar with aspartame, please check out this page: Aspartame Toxicity Information Centre. If I have a choice between an artificial sweetener and sugar, with no natural sweeteners in sight, I'll take the sugar every time.