Diet Coke Dissected | What happens one hour after you consume one can of diet soda?

After one infographic showing what happens to your body one hour after a can of coke is consumed, another question was born – what happens to your body after one can of diet coke is consumed? Does it live up to its name – i.e zero calories and no health implications?

As per a trade publication Beverage Digest, the sale of diet coke, which was the second most-selling beverage in the US, has significantly dropped as more people have grown educated regarding the health damages. Spokesperson of Coca Cola, however, refuses these claims, and says it adds to the ‘healthy lifestyle’.

“People have enjoyed drinking a Coca-Cola for more than 129 years. Like all soft drinks, it is perfectly safe to drink and can be enjoyed as part of a balanced diet and lifestyle. We provide a choice of colas to meet the needs of different consumers, including options that are lower sugar, sugar-free and caffeine-free.” 

But is it true? The question if it is a false election gimmick or actually true? Well, Coca Cola’s controversial past points otherwise. It was under fire for using cocaine in all of their products to cause addiction and hence had to replace its formula after facing the backlash.

Same is the case with their Diet Coke marketing strategy, which lead to the researchers keenly dissecting the product. Needless to say, the results were similarly haunting.


In the first 10 minutes, it tricks your taste buds and attacks your teeth.

The phosphoric acid in the drink attacks the enamel in your teeth. Along with it, the artificial sweeteners like aspartame hit your system. Aspartame may trigger taste receptors and trick your body into thinking it has just processed sugar.
Studies from Swithers and colleague has shown that frequent consumption of high-intensity sweeteners can have the opposite effect on the body. It can confuse body’s natural ability to manage calories based on tasting something sweet.

See the study here.

20 minutes later –  it may switch you to fat storage mode.

Like regular Coke, Coke Zero can also possibly trigger insulin and send your body into fat storage mode. According to Amanda Payne of Switzerland’s Institute of Food, artificial sweeteners, and sugar alcohols (another type of low-calorie sweetener), which are significant components in diet cola can all interfere negatively with natural gut bacteria that is part of your immune and digestive system.

40 minutes – you can be on a verge of getting ”addicted” to it.

After the cocaine conspiracy, they came out with an alternative combination to have a similar effect. The combo of aspartame and caffeine occupies in the mind a similar fashion, causing short-term addiction. Excitotoxins are released which may exhaust your brain by overstimulating it’s neuroreceptors, especially if consumed on a regular basis.

See the study here.

60 minutes later, it depletes nutrients, makes you hungry and thirsty for more.

Unlike the short-term satisfaction that regular coke provides, after Diet Coke, you may still crave sweets. After one hour, this will likely make you want to crave for food coke or junk food. As it also has literally zero nutritional value, which is why it can deplete the human body from nutrients.

“Some of the connection to metabolic disease could be related to how people behave by saying to themselves, ‘I’m having a diet soda, so this cheeseburger is OK. – said Swithers.

Marisa Peer rated by Men’s Health as Britain’s Best Therapist, a behavioural psychologist and a globally known expert in eating disorder also seconds this.

“It is very common to see clients who are overweight who drink diet coke who then eat a plate of chips or reach for the cake. This is because drinking a ‘diet drink’ like diet coke makes them feel it is now ok to eat whatever they want.’’

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