Diet Coke Plus: Healthy Soft Drink?

Introduced in 2007, Diet Coke Plus (also known as Coca-Cola Light Plus) is one of the recent formulations of Diet Coke. What makes it unique is that Diet Coke Plus is fortified with vitamins and minerals, as well as an added acesulfate potassium as sweetener alongside aspartame.

This is Coca-Cola’s attempt to enter the "healthy diet soda" market, as it is their first calorie-free, carbohydrate-free soda product infused with valuable nutrients and antioxidants. The drink is aimed at Diet Coke fans, mainly women in their 20s and 30s, and claims to help then "keep up with today’s hectic lifestyle."

The development of Diet Coke Plus was in response to hurting sales of soft drinks, which could be in response to the growing obesity epidemic in developed countries especially in the United States. It is promoted as a "sparkling beverage," since people are beginning to turn away from traditional soda, which have recently been put in the spotlight as being unhealthy.

Each 12-ounce serving contains 25% of the daily value for vitamins B3, B6, and B12, as well as 15% of zinc and magnesium All of these nutrients helps maintain a healthy immune system. Although it is marketed as "sugar-free," Diet Coke Plus actually contains 0.1 grams of sugar from every 100 milliliter of green tea powder, which brings out a unique flavor to the drink.

Critics, however, stated that marketing artificially-sweetened soft drinks as "healthy" was "a joke," even if they were fortified with vitamins and minerals. They reiterated that consumers would be better off getting their vitamins and minerals from natural foods. People from Coca-Cola, meanwhile, insisted that with few or no calories, diet soft drinks are a logical answer to expanding waistlines.

Diet Coke Plus is available in the United States, Belgium, Germany, and United Kingdom. It comes in two variants in the UK: Diet Coke Plus Vitamins, with added B vitamins and vitamin C; and Diet Coke Plus Antioxidants, which has added green tea and vitamin C.