Nasty chemicals fill our favorite sodas

By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer

soda bubbles
If it wasn’t for the BVO inside of soda, artificial colors would float to the top, much like gas bubbles do.

Soda is just about the worst beverage a person can ever consume. Not only is soda packed with enough sugar to shorten the human lifespan, it also contains large doses of caffeine to make you keep coming back for more. Well, if there was any doubt that soda is really bad for you, wait until you hear these crazy soda facts; they’ll make you never want another fizzy-filled can again

First and foremost, several sodas contain toxic flame retardants – chemicals engineered to delay the onset of fire. One of the chemicals in question is known as brominated vegetable oil (BVO), which can be found in substances such as clothes, upholstered furniture, and plastic. Yuck, why would they want to add this into their drinks?

Since soda is acidic and saturated with sugar, artificial colors don’t mix well with the concoction. By mixing the artificial colors with the BVO and then adding it to soda, the chemical blend is forced to stay together. Wow, that is almost as gross as last year’s Subway scandal, that revealed their “fresh” bread contained the same chemicals found in shoe soles and yoga mats.

Not only are these manmade chemicals devastating to our bodies, they also have a dramatic effect on our water supply. See, our bodies are nowhere near equipped to process engineered chemicals loaded in those carbonated drinks. Once the beverage goes through our digestive system – largely undigested – they are expelled into the sewage system after we use the restroom. Unfortunately, water treatment plants can’t really process manmade chemicals. So, it’s no surprise that a Swiss research team found common soda chemicals such as acesulfame K, sucralose, and saccharin in treatment plants all across the country in bodies of water, like lakes and rivers. In fact, when they tested 19 water treatment plants, they found artificial chemicals in every single one.

Coca Cola
Try replacing those yucky sodas with water.

Besides ruining our precious water supply, soda makes you age ridiculously fast. One of the main ingredients in popular sodas like Coca Cola is phosphoric acid, which adds a sour and tangy flavor, but it also weakens your bones, kidney, and teeth. When researchers conducted a study, they found that mice with elevated levels of phosphoric acid died five weeks earlier than the rodents with normal levels of the chemical.

Interestly enough, about 63% of Americans are actively trying to avoid soda in their lives, probably because they understand that sugary drinks are one of the biggest contributors to increased obesity rates. In response to this new health-conscious market, Coke, Pepsi, and Dr. Pepper plan to decrease America’s calorie count by dramatically reducing the amount found in their products. If all goes as planned, consumers will devour 20% less calories from sugary drinks by the year 2025.

Featured image courtesy of Marcos Andes on Wikipedia. Image of soda in water courtesy of Louish Pixel on Flickr.