Here’s What’s Wrong With That Viral Soda Infographic

By: Rachael Rettner
Published: 08/01/2015 07:04 PM EDT on LiveScience

An infographic that breaks down what happens in your body after you drink one Coke has gone viral, but health experts say some information in the graphic is exaggerated.

In addition, while soda is certainly not a healthy food choice, drinking a sugar-sweetened beverage once in a while wouldn’t necessarily make a person unhealthy, the experts said.

“If you’re drinking one soda on occasion … that doesn’t equate to it being necessarily unhealthy,” said Heather Mangieri, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and owner of the nutrition consulting company Nutrition Checkup in Pittsburgh. “The overall diet quality is what’s important.”

The infographic, which appears on the blog the Renegade Pharmacist, details seven changes that happen to the body during the first hour after drinking a Coke, including the effects of ingesting 39 grams of sugar. The information for the graphic was taken from a 2010 article on the website

On the whole, the science presented in the infographic is fairly accurate, said Dana Hunnes, senior dietitian at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

However, some of the wording is exaggerated, Mangieri said. For example, the infographic says that in the first 20 minutes of drinking a soda, “your blood sugar spikes, causing an insulin burst. Your liver responds to this by turning any sugar it can get its hands on into fat.”

But the effects of drinking this amount of sugar can vary depending on whether a person is active or inactive at the time, and whether they’ve eaten or not, Mangieri said. [How Much Sugar Is in That? (Infographic)]

“What happens after you consume a beverage like this relies heavily on whether the body is in need of energy, and what you do after consumption,” Mangieri said. If —> Read More