Food Talk And Fabulous Finds - Diet Coke question

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01-10-2004, 10:33 AM
Hi All,

I am a Diet Coke addict! I drink about 3-4 cans per day or 3/4 of a 2 liter bottle.

Is this hindering my weight loss? The label reads 0 calories and 0 carbs but I do realize that it is full of chemicals.

I do drink water in addition to the Diet Coke so I am not replacing the water I am supposed to drink.

Any information/advice will be appreciated.


01-10-2004, 03:17 PM
Like you said, it's full of chemicals. If you need the fizzy, drink a can of flavored seltzer water (La Croix, Klaarbrun, etc).

terrific pig
01-12-2004, 11:40 AM
I remember hearing at a weight watchers meeting that beverages with caffeine aren't great for weight loss because caffeine causes your body to retain fluids. I drink caffeine free diet coke, and it's not bad.

01-14-2004, 06:10 PM
I would say that diet coke is not going to hinder your weight loss. Caffeine is a diuretic, so it certainly does not cause your body to retain fluids. If you are getting a decent amount of exercise, you are fine. If you give up diet soda, you will most likely pick out something else. I would say you should stick to the diet soda.

01-14-2004, 07:25 PM
I can only speak for myself, and everyone is different, but it hasn't slowed down my weight loss. I gave it up for a while, but I really missed it and started drinking it again and it didn't seem to change anything.

01-15-2004, 07:41 PM
Atkins says aspartame (which is in most diet sodas) can stall weight loss in some people.
Try Diet Rite if you have it in your area. We prefer it to Diet Coke and it uses Splenda, and is caffeine free.

01-17-2004, 04:32 PM
i'm a nurse and i learned back in nursing school in nutrition class that carbonated beverages contain phosphorus which likes to (i think it HAS to) bind with calcium. so i guess it depends how many a day you drink, but if you drink a lot, it will begin to take the calcium from your bones! not good. i didn't grow up drinking soda so i'm fine without it, but i know a lot of people are addicted to it, probably the caffiene or something. in my opinion, you should try to kick it all together. step 1: don't keep it in your house.

01-17-2004, 05:57 PM
It's the caffeine that causes loss of denisity in bones not phosphoric acid.

Miss Chris:)

01-17-2004, 08:22 PM's my take on the whole topic. I like my Diet Cokes too, but I limit myself to one a day at most - and I only drink water at work. This way I get in my 3-4 liters of H20 a day - and save my Diet Coke for evening. (the caffeine doesn't bother me as far as sleeping goes!).

Aspartame - people are different about this. IMO it's like MSG which causes Chinese Restaurant Syndrome in some people, others (again like me!) aren't bothered by it.

I expect that once the price goes down on Splenda, it will become the artificial sweetener of choice - right now it's still too expensive for many manufacturers to use. The main advantage that Splenda has over Equal/aspartame is that you can heat it - Equal breaks down and becomes bitter at high temps.

And there are so many myths going around about Coke...there's an entire page at the Uraban Legends site

Claim: The acids in Coca-Cola make it harmful to drink.

Status: False.

Example: [Collected on the Internet, 2001]

1. In many states the highway patrol carries two gallons of Coke in the truck to remove blood from the highway after a car accident.

2. You can put a T-bone steak in a bowl of coke and it will be gone in two days.

3. To clean a toilet: Pour a can of Coca-Cola into the toilet bowl . . . Let the "real thing" sit for one hour, then flush clean.

4. The citric acid in Coke removes stains from vitreous china.

5. To remove rust spots from chrome car bumpers: Rub the bumper with a crumpled-up piece of Reynolds Wrap aluminum foil dipped in Coca-Cola.

6. To clean corrosion from car battery terminals: Pour a can of Coca-Cola over the terminals to bubble away the corrosion.

7. To loosen a rusted bolt: Applying a cloth soaked in Coca-Cola to the rusted bolt for several minutes.

8. To bake a moist ham: Empty a can of Coca-Cola into the baking pan;rap the ham in aluminum foil, and bake. Thirty minutes before the ham is finished, remove the foil, allowing the drippings to mix with the Coke for a sumptuous brown gravy.

9. To remove grease from clothes: Empty a can of coke into a load of greasy clothes, add detergent, And run through a regular cycle. The Coca-Cola will help loosen grease stains. It will also clean road haze fromyour windshield.


1. The active ingredient in Coke is phosphoric acid. It's pH is 2.8. It will dissolve a nail in about 4 days.

2. To carry Coca Cola syrup (the concentrate) the commercial truck must use the Hazardous material place cards reserved for Highly Corrosive materials.

3. The distributors of coke have been using it to clean the engines of their trucks for about 20 years! Drink up! No joke. Think what coke and other soft drinks do to your teeth on a daily basis. A tooth will dissolve in a cup of coke in 24-48 hours

Origins: Many
of the entries above are just simple household tips involving Coca-Cola. That you can cook and clean with Coke is relatively meaningless from a safety standpoint ó you can use a wide array of common household substances (including water) for the same purposes; that fact alone doesn't necessarily make them dangerous to ingest. Nearly all carbonated soft drinks contain carbonic acid, which is moderately useful for tasks such as removing stains and dissolving rust deposits (although plain soda water is much better for some of these purposes than Coca-Cola or other soft drinks, as it doesn't leave a sticky sugar residue behind). Carbonic acid is relatively weak, however, and people have been drinking carbonated water for many years with no detrimental effects.

The rest of the claims offered here are specious. Coca-Cola does contain small amounts of citric acid and phosphoric acid; however, all the insinuations about the dangers these acids might pose to people who drink Coca-Cola ignore a simple concept familiar to any first-year chemistry student: concentration. Coca-Cola contains less citric acid than orange juice does, and the concentration of phosphoric acid in Coke is far too small (a mere 11 to 13 grams per gallon of syrup, or about 0.20 to 0.30 per cent of the total formula) to dissolve a steak, a tooth, or a nail overnight. (Much of the item will dissolve eventually, but after a day or two you'll still have most of the tooth, a whole nail, and one very soggy t-bone.)

The next time you're stopped by a highway patrolman, try asking him if he's ever scrubbed blood stains off a highway with Coca-Cola (or anything else). If you're lucky, by the time he stops laughing he'll have forgotten about the citation he was going to give you.

01-17-2004, 08:26 PM
More from the Coke website:

Rumor: The acidity of cola drinks is strong enough to dissolve teeth and bones

Our Response: Almost all foods naturally contain a small amount of acid, including fruit juices, buttermilk, and soft drinks. In fact, cranberries, lemons and limes are examples of fruits that are more acidic than Coca-Cola. Acids, such as phosphoric and citric acid, add a pleasant tartness to a beverage. Phosphoric acid provides phosphorus which is an essential element of bones and tissues. None of these foods are acidic enough to harm our body tissues -- our own natural stomach acid is stronger.

Soaking something in a soft drink or rubbing something with a cloth soaked in a soft drink is not at all like drinking a soft drink. People don't hold soft drinks in their mouths for long periods of time, or rub their teeth with fabric soaked in soft drinks, so it doesn't make sense to extend these possible affects to normal use of the product. Because our teeth are constantly bathed by saliva, which helps buffer the effects of acids from foods and beverages, the effect on tooth enamel is greatly reduced. In fact, the acids in most foods are neutralized to a large degree by the saliva in the mouth long before they reach the stomach.

Rumor: Phosphoric acid in Coca-Cola leads to osteoporosis

Our Response: Phosphoric acid has been recognized as safe for use as a food additive by the health authorities in every country where Coca-Cola is sold.

Phosphoric acid provides phosphorus, which is an essential element of bones and tissues. The most recent research indicates that phosphorus and calcium are both needed for strong bones. The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends the following lifestyle strategies: a balanced diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, weight-bearing exercise, and a healthy lifestyle without smoking or excessive alcohol use.

There is, in fact, very little phosphorus in soft drinks. Soft drinks contribute just 2 percent to the average intake of phosphorus in the U.S. diet. Most of the phosphorus in the typical diet comes from meat and cheese.
Rumor: The polyethylene glycol in soft drinks is also used as anti-freeze in automobiles and as an oil solvent

Our Response: This rumor confuses polyethylene glycol with ethylene glycol, a different substance that is used as anti-freeze. Polyethylene glycol is not an added ingredient in soft drinks, but it is safe and suitable for use in foods and beverages, according to the U.S. FDA and other regulatory authorities.

All ingredients used in soft drinks have been thoroughly tested and are recognized as safe for use by the health authorities of the countries in which they are sold.

01-17-2004, 09:11 PM
good information, but it's from the Coke website, right? i'd like to check it out further on a nutrition website or something. know of any good websites for nutrition? well i guess soda isn't that bad, but i'm still gonna tell my husband and kids it is, or else they'll insist i buy it and i'll never get them to drink water!

01-17-2004, 11:15 PM
I just wanted to thank everyone for their input! I am new here and everyone is so friendly! Some of those number that you have post are quite impressive. You all give me the motivation I need.

I don't think I can give up the Diet Coke completely but I will try to cut some out. Nothing wrong with a compromise.


01-18-2004, 09:14 PM
ummmm. could i just pop in here with a very CORPORATE view of the information from the coke website? and no, i don't work for coke. i work for a medical education company, but i've been around corporate life for a long time. for every claim that's made on a website, in any form of ad, there has to be a reference. and not just 'i found it somewhere.' ALL the data, and the ENTIRE paper have to be included with the claim, and on file. and the whole package gets delivered to the legal department, where they actually look at it and decide if the statements can be made. and they demand changes. if it's not lickety-spit clean and clear, it gets rewritten or deleted.

so. my bet is that the info from the coke website is more accurate than the info that's available on some others.

as for the availability of nutrition info, the FDA is the place to go. good luck!

01-18-2004, 10:16 PM


Elasky - yup - I KNOW the info is from the Coke website. But I's up to the individual to make their own decisions. There are a LOT worse things to drink out there than diet Coke.

01-18-2004, 11:08 PM
I work for the company that makes the syrup and it is NOT a hazardous material. I second everything Mrs. Jim and Jiffy said plus I will add that a simple check of caffeine and health problems will give you the bone density studies.

Miss Chris

01-20-2004, 12:12 AM
I LOVE DIET SODA. My husband calls it my black fizzy friend. I plan my day around getting a fountain soda (I think it is better than canned.) My 16 year old has asked to use my car and promised a diet Pepsi as a token of his appreciation on his return. Of course he drove off immediately in the car. I am hooked.
I have stopped all diet soda 3 times for months on end and then I have just one and I'm back to it daily.

01-20-2004, 03:05 PM
Soda cannot take calcium from your bones. There is a whole negative feedback system which regulates blood and bone calcium levels through calcitonin and parathyroid hormone and it has nothing to do with soda.

01-23-2004, 10:56 AM
Just drink a reasonable amount of diet coke and you will be fine. Too much of anything isnít good for you, so make sure you are eating healthy foods, getting enough exercise, and drink a lot of water. That way a coke here or there will not hurt you.

01-23-2004, 03:09 PM
Well at least your drinking diet coke.. LOL! I can't stand diet sodas. I drink the real stuff. Although I do LOVE caffeine free Pepsi. HEEHEE!

01-24-2004, 06:38 AM
Is this hindering my weight loss? The label reads 0 calories and 0 carbs but I do realize that it is full of chemicals.I drank about 1 1/2 liters of Caffeine Free Diet Coke, every day for 40 weeks, while losing 100 pounds. No problemo.

01-26-2004, 04:29 PM
Bicker! Congratulations! That is fantastic!!! Well looks like drinking soda doesn't hinder that much ! 100lbs is great!

01-27-2004, 12:31 AM
Who are those skinny people in the photo?? Just a thin pair of love birds it looks like. WOW!!! 100 lbs...

01-27-2004, 10:08 AM
My take on diet soda -- I've given up SO darn much -- they'll have to pry my diet soda from my cold dead fingers (and my mug of morning coffee, but that's different subject :D ). Like Mothergoose and Bicker and MrsJim and all the other big losers who posted here -- it didn't slow me down at all.

Suzanne 3FC
01-28-2004, 08:24 PM
To add another spin to this, everything I've read indicates it has more to do with calcium consumption than the caffeine or phosphorus in the cola. Studies have shown that as long as you get enough calcium from other sources, then you are ok. But if you consume mainly colas and do not get enough calcium, then it's like a double whammy to your bone density.

The info from Snopes and Coke are correct in that the phosphorus itself is not harmful and is not going to dissolve your bones or teeth. However, the info from Elasky that phosphorus binds to calcium and prevents it from being absorbed is also seems to be true, according to a recent study by Dr. Tucker at Tufts University, and was presented to the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research in September, 2003.

While phosphoric acid is present in other dietary sources, including dairy products, it may not cause the same sort of problem.

"When phosphoric acid comes packaged with other nutrients, it's absorbed normally and everything is in balance. We think the problem with cola is that you're getting those doses of phosphoric acid without any calcium. It's not balanced, and that extra phosphorus binds with calcium and prevents it from being absorbed," Dr. Tucker said.

This latest study still doesn't answer all the questions, said Dennis Black, PhD, professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California at San Francisco.

"This kind of study is hard because you ask people at one point in time 'what do you drink?' If you asked them a month earlier they may have drunk something different. It's very difficult to assess," he said.

The study also found that while cola consumption was associated with lower BMD in women, the same did not hold true for men.

Btw, the study indicated that this occurred in women that drank at least 3 cans of cola per day. Clear soft drinks did not have have this affect. Diet colas have considerably less phosphoric acid than regular colas.

Other studies have shown a connection between caffeine consumption and calcium absorbtion, so that is something else to consider.

Unless I'm misinterpreting this, it seems that you will be ok as long as you still get adequate calcium from other sources, such as nonfat milk, cottage cheese, broccoli, etc. I'm not entirely sure if cola and the sources of calcium should be consumed at the same time.

01-29-2004, 03:07 PM
I have to agree here, I have read many studies such as this... The main oint is that diet soda is okay, but it hould not be the main beverage that is consumed. 3 cans is quite a lot of cola. More like 1 a day at most. It should be a treat, not your hydrator. IMO.

01-31-2004, 09:02 AM
I definite don't rely on soda alone. I do about half CF diet soda, and about half decaf coffee. I'm more worried about having so much aspartame than anything else.

02-01-2004, 02:05 PM
Wow, I found this thread and thought I'd check it out because I used to drink loads of Diet Coke. I never though people would worry about it so much. I've cut my consumption down to one a day at lunch and drink Crystal light with soda water instead of regular water for the rest of the day. I know some diets (Atkins in particular) say you should not drink it but I think as long as you are still consuming enough water it is fine. I'd much rather curb my sweet tooth with a diet coke than a handful of candy. I think we all have to compramise somewhere, not everything we do is going to be healthy. It seems like the only stuff that tastes really good sometimes is the stuff that is bad for us :)

02-06-2004, 08:22 AM
Balance is the key. Like you said, trading off artificial sweetener for sugar is often a good trade.

02-17-2004, 09:48 PM
It seems the consensus of opinion is........moderation in all things.....and I wish I could say that I practice that when it comes to diet coke! No one here has addressed the sodium content of diet coke......40mg per 12-oz......that seems a little high, especially when multiplied by 2 or more per day. I know when I really lose control with the diet coke, it is harder for me to lose weight and I always blamed it on the sodium and resulting water retention. For myself, I am substituting more and more water....and saving the diet cola for when I really need the lift!

02-18-2004, 07:38 AM
I've found that Diet Rite is a great switch-off with CF Diet Coke, and addresses the sodium problem quite well.

02-27-2004, 05:40 PM
It seems the consensus of opinion is........moderation in all things.....and I wish I could say that I practice that when it comes to diet coke! No one here has addressed the sodium content of diet coke......40mg per 12-oz......that seems a little high, especially when multiplied by 2 or more per day. I know when I really lose control with the diet coke, it is harder for me to lose weight and I always blamed it on the sodium and resulting water retention. For myself, I am substituting more and more water....and saving the diet cola for when I really need the lift!

Just wanted to say that I couldn't have said it better... Moderation is key, and so is willpower. One coke here and there is okay, just do not go overboard. :D