Below we want to inform you about the usual ingredients of soft drinks, the role they play in the drink and what real effects (positive and negative) they can cause in our body, taking into account the amount invested in the soft drink.
European Union food legislation establishes that for a drink to be considered a soft drink, it must be water-based and contain less than 0.5% alcohol, in addition to other ingredients such as raising agents, sweeteners, aromas, colorants, flavorings or preservatives.
This same legislation establishes the maximum concentration limits allowed so that the drink that reaches the consumer does not represent a health risk as long as it is consumed in a moderate and responsible way.
The ingredients in soft drinks
These are the ingredients most frequently used in soft drinks
The main and majority ingredient in any soft drink is water. In soft drinks with bubbles, the water is carbonated, this means that it contains dissolved carbonic acid that releases carbon dioxide (CO 2) and forms bubbles. Carbonated water also influences the flavor by providing acidity.
All soft drinks contain sweeteners to give them a sweet taste. Sweeteners can be natural sugars, such as sucrose or fructose; or be artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame (E-951) or cyclamate (E-952).
In addition to these, sweeteners that do not provide a glycemic index but do have a sweet taste, such as natural glycosides, can be used. The sugar content of soft drinks varies in the different products on the market, from sugar-free soft drinks (0% sugar) to soft drinks that contain 13% sugar.
Often times, the lower sugar soft drinks contain the most artificial sweeteners. The excessive consumption of soft drinks with a high amount of sugar, can favor the appearance of diseases such as diabetes or hypertension.
Soft drinks contain acidulants to modulate the flavor . The correct ratio between sweetness (provided by sweeteners) and acidity is what gives soft drinks a pleasant taste, in addition to the aromas it may contain.
The most commonly used acidulants are carbonic acid (in soda with bubbles), citric acid and phosphoric acid. Citric acid can be obtained naturally from citrus fruits such as lemon or orange and added to soda in the form of juice.
Although generally, both citric acid and phosphoric acid are obtained artificially since it is the most economical process. That they are of artificial origin does not indicate that they are less healthy.
Citric acid is still citric acid coming from a fruit or from an artificial synthesis process. In moderate amounts, these acidulants do not represent any risk and are even beneficial for the metabolism, but if they are consumed in excess, they can cause damage to tooth enamel or hinder the absorption of calcium in the bones.
The aromas and flavorings help provide the soda with the desired flavor. They can be natural or artificial and often come from plant extracts. The one that arouses the most interest is caffeine.
Caffeine is a natural aroma from coffee that has antioxidant and stimulating properties. Its excessive consumption can cause insomnia, tachycardia, fatigue, anxiety or hyperactivity. The caffeine content in soft drinks ranges from those that do not contain caffeine (0 mg / liter) to energy drinks whose content is higher (up to 400 mg / liter).
Frequently a 33 cl can of cola. contains between 30 and 40 mg of caffeine (the equivalent of about 110 mg / liter). To get an idea, a cup of espresso coffee (0.5 cl.) Contains approximately 100 mg of caffeine (the equivalent of 2000 mg / liter).
Its function is to color the soda to make it more attractive. Natural colorants, such as those present in fruit juices, roasted sugar to give a dark color, or artificial colorants can be used. They are used in small amounts, enough to give color without altering the taste and their consumption in soft drinks does not represent a health risk.
Some soft drinks contain juice from fruits, mainly orange or lemon, although soft drinks with new flavors such as strawberry, pineapple or apple are being introduced every time. The juice contained in the soft drink can be squeezed natural juice or be made up of concentrated juice.
In any case, the presence of juice is a small contribution of vitamins, color and natural flavor. The usual content of juice in soft drinks ranges from 0% (in soft drinks that do not contain juice) to 25% in drinks based on fruit juice, sometimes mixed with milk.
After knowing the main ingredients of soft drinks, we can get the idea that its moderate and responsible consumption is not harmful to health. Soft drinks should never be used to replace water or fruit consumption. Drinking water is the best option to hydrate yourself and eating fruit is the best option to obtain vitamins.
The 3-Day Diet is a very specific food plan that is meant to be followed exactly as outlined. Portions must be eaten exactly as specified. Eating more than is recommended is not advised and it recommends dieters consume all meals, even if they are not hungry. Dieters are also instructed to drink 4 cups of water or other beverages that do not have any calories each day.