Is Coca-cola Safe to Drink? An Analysis of The Ingredients

A detailed analysis of the ingredients in Coca-Cola (as recently listed) focusing on their health risks and dangerous properties. Is the drink safe?

Recently, an American radio programme claimed to have identified the ingredients used in the manufacture of the popular soft drink Coca Cola. The ingredients he listed are as follows:

  • Fluid extract of Coca: 3 drams USP
  • Citric acid: 3 oz
  • Caffeine: 1 oz
  • Sugar: 30 lbs
  • Water: 2.5 gal
  • Lime juice: 2 pints (1 quart)
  • Vanilla: 1 oz
  • Caramel: 1.5 oz or more for color

And the secret ‘7X’ flavor (use 2 oz of flavor to 5 gals syrup):

  • Alcohol: 8 oz
  • Orange oil: 20 drops
  • Lemon oil: 30 drops
  • Nutmeg oil: 10 drops
  • Coriander oil: 5 drops
  • Neroli oil: 10 drops
  • Cinnamon oil: 10 drops

But are these safe for human consumption?

  • Fluid extract of Coca: 3 drams USP

Coca is a South American plant, infamous for being a source of cocaine and nicotine. When chewed, coca acts as a stimulant and can suppress hunger, thirst and fatigue. It can alive altitude sickness and can be used as an anesthetic. It constricts blood vessels and can therefore be used to oppose bleeding (for example, in nosebleeds). Studies on rats have shown that it is addictive.

Coca is often used in traditional teas, and has been recently introduced (albeit in a de-cocainized form) in Coca Cola and Red Bull.

  • Citric acid: 3 oz

Citric acid is a natural preservative, and if often used to add an acidic or sour taste to foods and beverages. It is found naturally is citric fruits (lemons, oranges, etc). It can also in used in shampoo, bathroom cleaning solutions and to slow the setting of cement. It is also a key chemical required in the synthesis of the volatile and explosive compound HMTD, and therefore the purchase of large quantities of citric acid may be typical of terrorist activates.

Contact with dry citric acid can lead to skin irritation and may also lead to blindness. Excessive consumption is capable of eroding the tooth enamel.

  • Caffeine: 1 oz

Caffeine is a bitter tasting substance and is the world’s most popular psychoactive stimulant. It is found in many beans, fruits leaves, where it works as a natural pesticide. Consumption of caffeine temporarily wards of drowsiness and restores alertness. Caffeine tolerance can build up very quickly which can soon lead to caffeine addiction. One side effect of caffeine is known as the ‘crash’ and is when the caffeine has effectively all been used – characteristics of the ‘crash’ include depression, irritability and anxiety. Caffeine can induce sleep disorders, impair long-term memory, increase the rick of miscarriages and an overdose can lead to death.

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  1. Interesting article! I had no idea that coca was still included!!

  2. Thanks! And yeah, I didn’t know that at first. But researching this has really opened my eyes to what’s actually in the drink.

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