- Gary M. Verigin, DDS, inc. - https://biologicaldentalhealth.com -

Biosis 10: Water or Coke?: Some Facts

From Biosis 10, May 2006

“Water or Coke?” Some Facts…

Recently, we received the following e-mail. Maybe you received it, too. It seems to be making the online rounds these days. All errors are in the original text.



And now for the properties of COKE:

For Your Info:

Now the question is, would you like a coke or a glass of water?

Now, whenever we get an e-mail like this, our first response is always: Is it legit? A quick Internet search reveals some misleading elements in this one.

For starters, there is just no evidence to support the claims about highway patrol usage, the need for hazardous material placards or distributors systematically cleaning their engines with Coke. According to the Urban Legends Reference Pages’ entry on this “Cokelore,” [1] most of the remaining items about the soda seem to come from the 1995 book of household tips Polish Your Furniture with Panty Hose. Even so, while the carbonic acid in Coke may act as a cleanser, the ingredient isn’t unique to Coke. It is used in almost all carbonated soft drinks, as are phosphoric and citric acids. Nor are any of these acids caustic in the dilutions mentioned. In fact, the gastric acid in your stomach is much more powerful!

By contrasting these details with facts about water, the e-mail is meant to remind us that water is healthy and Coke is not. But we don’t need any misleading comparison to tell us this. Scientific research has made it repeatedly clear that, altogether, the acids, sugars and additives in soda can be harmful to teeth and oral tissues. The sugars are especially damaging, feeding the biofilm that forms on your teeth between meals and contributes to tooth decay and gum disease. They are also major contributors to obesity and diabetes.

At the same time, the phosphoric acid does interfere with calcium uptake and retention, and so over time can have a negative effect on bone health, and in children, bone growth. Other evidence points to a variety of additives interfering with the uptake and retention of B vitamins. These are true for both full-sugared and sugar-free versions of soda.

Suffice it to say, there are good reasons why recommendations [2] (PDF) published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition rate soda as the least preferred beverage for ensuring sufficient hydration – even less than alcohol! And what’s the most preferred? Water, of course!

Water is a vital constituent of health. It is the basis for life. Your body needs it to perform a host of metabolic functions, from waste removal to fat oxidation. Not only do we need to daily replace the water we lose through sweat, urine and feces – we also need it to maintain ongoing functions in our bodies. It also helps ensure full and optimum nutrient uptake.

Conventional wisdom says we need eight glasses of water daily. This can be a good guide, but it’s not necessarily gospel truth. For instance, your diet will have a say in how much water you need to drink, since we get much of the water we need from vegetables, fruits and beverages other than water. Individual needs may also differ due to metabolism rate, activity level and other variables.

In addition to the quantity of water you drink, you should also ensure that the water is of good quality. Quality water will never contain fluoride, chlorine, heavy metals or other toxins. It should contain vital trace minerals. Filtered tap water is usually sufficient, or bottled spring or mineral water if necessary. You may find it beneficial to add a homeopathic like Hydration to your water source, which can aid your body in efficiently and effectively using the water you give it.

By drinking water and eating a diet rich in vegetables and moderate in fruit, you’ll get enough fluid for your body to do its living and for you to feel good. You don’t need a misleading comparison to know the virtues of water. But if it serves as a reminder, it can’t be all bad.