Why is cola sour

Is cola as unhealthy as is always said?

Thoughts, biodegraded

What is unhealthy about cola? I recently discussed with a couple of colleagues what makes cola unhealthy and whether the brown capitalist fizzy drink is any more unhealthy than other drinks. Here's what I quickly googled about the subject.

According to the label, Coca-Cola contains around 10g of sugar per 100ml, which corresponds to 10 percent by weight. If you look at how much is contained in a normal 200ml glass, for example in the form of pieces of sugar, you quickly realize that excessive consumption of cola is anything but healthy. Excessive sugar consumption causes tooth decay and metabolic disorders.

In addition, there is the acid that erodes the tooth enamel: with a pH value of 2.6, cola is about as acidic as table vinegar. This is very acidic and is only bearable due to the high sugar content - who can drink pure vinegar without grimacing? It also contains phosphoric acid, which is said to even loosen meat from bones and make nails rust-free.

But the reputation of the soda is worse than it deserves. Other drinks deserve a similar amount of scolding, because the sugar content is curiously surpassed by the generally healthy fruit juices: Apple juice contains about 11g, grape juice even 15g of sugar per 100ml. Many are surprised that juices are so sugary. And what about the pH? If you believe Wikipedia, fruit juices contain less acid than cola, but are still quite acidic: and so you could remove rust from nails with apple juice and even juice spritzers are supposedly hardly more tooth-friendly than pure juices.

And the phosphoric acid? A maximum of 0.07g per 100ml is permitted as an additive, and phosphoric acid is also found in many foods. An intake of phosphoric acid and phosphates of up to 0.07 g per kg of body weight per day is considered harmless - this corresponds to 4.9 g of phosphate for a person weighing 70 kg and thus seven liters of cola daily (I hope I haven't miscalculated). The amount of sugar in seven liters of cola is likely to blow your mind ...

So: Cola is not healthy, but in terms of sugar and acid content it is roughly in the same league as fruit juice. It is probably unwise to eat only cola or fruit juices. As always, the rule is: enjoy it in moderation and don't overdo it!

Martin Ballaschk holds a PhD in biology, but is interested in many other natural sciences. The blog serves as a digestive organ for his thoughts. Professionally he works as a science communicator, here purely privately.

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