“Clear American naturally flavored sparkling water beverage with other natural flavors” is what you read on the label. In addition, it is zero calories, zero caffeine and zero sugar. Oh, it contains Antioxidants: Vitamin E + Vitamin A + Zinc. The label suggests also that the content has something to do with pomegranate, blueberry and acai. All those words create an impression that this soda is: Antioxidant and vitamin water, naturally flavored with a variety of fruits. Sounds not bad at all, hah? Now let’s face the reality and look at the risk diagram.
DyeDiet Doesn’t Buy It!
As you can see, the ingredients are water, artificial sweeteners, natural flavor, preservatives, two vitamins and zinc supplement. Let’s look into some details below.
- Aspartame, an artificial sweetener, a dipeptide of phenylalanine and aspartic acid with a highly controversial history. Recent independent studies demonstrated that aspartame produces multi-potential carcinogenic effects in rats (see Carcinogenic Effects of Aspartame) even when administered in as low a dosage as 20 mg/Kg, that is 2.5 times lower than the 50 mg Acceptable Daily Intake in the USA! Also, significant dose-related increases of malignant tumors in rats were found (see Life Span Exposure to Low Doses of Aspartame). For your own sake, please watch a video: A Poisoned World – Aspartame. Aspartame has been recently named among three worst sweeteners.
- Acesulfame potassium, another artificial sweetener foreign to human nature. See Acesulfame Potassium MSDS (Section 11 – Toxicology). It is added to hide unpleasant aftertaste of aspartame. According to the Wikipedia, “some potential effects associated with Acesulfame K have appeared in animal studies. Acesulfame K has been shown to stimulate dose-dependent insulin secretion in rats, though no hypoglycemia was observed… Critics say acesulfame potassium has not been studied adequately and may be carcinogenic, although these claims have been dismissed by the US FDA and by equivalent authorities in the European Union.”
- Potassium benzoate, a food preservative with low acute toxicity in rats (LD50 ~ 4g/Kg, see Potassium Benzoate MSDS). However, in acidic medium it may produce highly toxic benzene that is known to cause cancers and reproductive damage (see Benzene MSDS). Also see UK document on the links between this additive, artificial colorants and ADHD in children: Assessment of the results of the study by McCann et al. (2007) on the effect of some colours and sodium benzoate on children’s behaviour.
- Zinc gluconate is a supplement with some safety concerns: instances of anosmia (loss of smell) have been reported.
- Recent studies showed that we need only tiny amounts of vitamins and that particularly “certain antioxidant supplements, such as vitamin E, vitamin A, and beta-carotene, can be harmful.” Excessive intake of Vitamin E may raise, not lower, prostate cancer risk.
Accordingly, you will get very high foreign additive risk of DDFI = 21/7 = 3 and miserable nutritional value of DDNF = 7/36 ~ 0.2. Of course, vitamins are not evil. But we may turn them against our interests if consume them in excess causing signs of vitamin toxicity. Again, as always, as with regard to sugar or HFCS and any other nutrients and foods, MODERATION is the golden key to lower risks.
When we consume sugar substitutes we, in fact, lie to our body. Our sensors send a message to the Central Nervous System that we got quick energy source from sugars that is not true. Based on the studies in animals, artificial sweeteners may trigger overeating and weight gain; read the article A Role for Sweet Taste: Calorie Predictive Relations in Energy Regulation.
Surprised? You should not be. There is always price to pay for lying. We often try to trick our nature. We want to eat and drink plenty of sweets without getting fat and when we got fat we want to get back slim without due efforts like by taking a “magic pill” or by use of liposuction. Well, food and pharmaceutical industry serve our silly caprices pretty well. And they profit well too! So, all in all, millions of American people pay billions to both food and pharmaceutical industries just to undermine their own health and guarantee painful old years. Good news is that we can break this vicious circle by making less risky food choices.
Finally, I have tried this Clear American antioxidant beverage. The flavor was like body wash or something unnatural. You decide for yourself.
Also, ZERO calories Sparkling Natural Mineral Waters:
The mineral water you can find at Walmart. Without issues associated with aspartame, preservatives this is superior thirst quencher. Make less risky food choices and hydrate yourself right!