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What’s In My Food: Sprite Ingredients Explained

Reading the ingredient list on your food label and knowing what they are, are two different things. For example: Do you know what the ingredients BHT, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, blue 1, and phosphoric acid are? Well you should, since you are consuming them on a daily basis. One's use is banned in restaurants. Another is mined from the earth. And the Other two are made from petroleum.

Can you imagine what these ingredients are doing to your body? Well don't imagine. Know. Educate yourself. Read on to learn exactly what your food is made of, and what it’s doing to your health.

In all products, ingredients must be listed according to their relative weight. The listing of each ingredient is in a descending order of predominance.

Sprite’s ingredients are: Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, citric acid, natural flavors, sodium citrate, sodium benzoate (to protect taste).


1. Carbonated Water: Plain water into which carbon dioxide gas has been dissolved.

Health effects: Linked to tooth decay. May reduce fertility. Suspected teratogen (any agent that interferes with normal embryonic development).

2. High fructose corn syrup: Corn derived sweetener. Corn starch is processed to corn syrup and then treated with enzymes to convert glucose in fructose.

Health Effects:  Excess may increase risk of tooth decay, abnormal weight gain, kidney stones, gout, kidney stones, colon cancer, and diabetes. Large amounts have caused tumors in mice. In 2005, some U.S. manufactured high fructose corn syrup was found to contain trace amounts of mercury.

3. Citric acid: A weak organic acid used as a flavoring agent and a preservative. Extracted from citrus fruits or made by fermentation of yeast or mold. May contain MSG. May be genetically modified.

Health effects: If MSG sensitive, may provoke symptoms.

4. Natural flavors: Any flavor not chemically derived. Obtained by physical processes from plants or animals. Made to provide flavor to a food rather than nutritional value. May contain MSG.

Health effects:  Unknown.Different foods use different natural flavors and processes. Naturally derived ingredients may be altered, rendered unsafe. It should be noted that the use of the word “natural flavors” is often used to mask the use of harmful, naturally derived flavors.

5. Sodium citrate: The sodium salt of citric acid. Used for flavoring or as a preservative.

Health effects: May interfere with the urinary excretion of drugs, having the effect of making said drugs either less potent or more toxic.

6. Sodium benzoate: Used as a preservative. It is the sodium salt of Benzoic acid. Benzoic acid is synthesized commercially from toluene. Toluene is produced in the gasoline making process and the making of coke (carbon fuel produced by distillation of coal) from coal. Therefore, sodium benzoate is a petroleum derivative.

Health effects: Asthma, hives, hay fever, mouth irritation, and other allergic reactions. Neurotoxicity and brain damage; Linked to hyperactivity and decreased intellect in children. May cause DNA damage, leading to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s.

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Benzene, a known cancer-causing agent, can form in soft drinks when sodium benzoate and ascorbic acid (vitamin c, commonly added to fortify soft drinks) are mixed.


kim on November 14, 2017:

i really like this

austin on September 02, 2016:


lilysweetsong on November 30, 2015:

Thank you for informing the public. I never liked soft drinks in the first place, so I guess that is a good thing. this has really helped me with me science project. :)

Adam on July 30, 2015:

The argument against most of these ingredients is hyperbole.

cfdffd on November 17, 2014:


cool on December 02, 2013:


nabil on August 10, 2013:

so i am being lured to buy my own death....really quenches your thirst..

The Smiling Man (author) from USA on June 03, 2013:


I agree Shawn. For all those concerned soda lovers out there, I'd definitely recommend sugar cane sweetened alternatives. Still not exactly healthy, but safer for your health I suppose.

Shawn on February 07, 2013:

No soft drink anymore is safe... The regular colas have HFCS and the diets have harmful sweeteners like aspartame. The best you can do is the "throwback" version of certain soft drinks with cane sugar instead of HFCS, but even that isn't the best beverage to consume.

The Smiling Man (author) from USA on January 24, 2013:

yes it is

JEROME on January 14, 2013:

so the HFCS is GMO?

The Smiling Man (author) from USA on November 06, 2012:

Fake how? These are all facts. Food ingredients and their definitions.

maria on November 03, 2012:

is this real? it just looks as if people post anything. it doesn't feel real to me. do not read it is fake i used this website and got a D in my report!

Hm on September 11, 2012:

I was drinking a sprite while reading this article. I finished it with pride.

The Smiling Man (author) from USA on June 19, 2012:

Yeah, it interferes with embryonic activity, as in it interferes with the embryo (an unborn baby in the process of development) during its development.

someone on April 17, 2012:

nothing seems wrong to me

christy on December 29, 2011:

The description of a teratogen could be misleading. As I remember, it, is something consumed during pregnancy and specifically by women.

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