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What Happens One Hour After Drinking a Can of Coke?

Today I came across an infographic What Happens One Hour After Drinking a Can of Coke? created by pharmacist Niraj Naik and published on the blog The Renegade Pharmacist.

There was a time when I used to have my dinner only when a Coke bottle was there at my dinner table. Those days, I was in a PG and at times dinner used to be so pathetic that I needed something to improve its taste. I never liked pickles much so Coke came into my survival. I used to have complete dinner with having sips of this sugary drink. When for the first time, I felt the need to keep my weight in check after my pregnency, I realized quitting sugery and fizzy drinks can help a big time. And since then I broke my friendship with Coke and other Aerated drinks. I can't assert that the facts depicted in this image (above) are 100% true. However, this again has given me a reason to cherish my dissent with aerated drinks.

After the post What Happens One Hour After Drinking a Can of Coke went viral, everyone started checking if these claims are true or false. I also did some research on the reclamations made through above Infographic and here is my study. Have a look at What Happens One Hour After Drinking a Can of Coke:

1. The first 10 minutes after having Coke: 

Infographic claims:  A coca cola contains 10 teaspoons of sugar and after having a can, this much of sugar hits our system. As coca cola contains phosphoric acid, it prevents us from vomiting after drinking this much of sugar.

Analysis : According to Coca-Cola website, a 12 fl oz can contains 39 grams of sugar, which is approximately 10 teaspoons. It is also known that Phosphoric acid is added to Coke to give it a tangy flavour. Now Phosphoric acid doesn't prevent vomiting. In fact, many of the ready-made juices also contain 10-12 teaspoons of sugar in their cans but we drink them without puking. So, vomiting part of this Infographic (above) seems exaggerated.

2. After 20 minutes 

Infographic claims:  You just had 10 teaspoons of sugar in your body and this results in blood sugar spikes. This eventually causes insulin to burst. As a result, the liver turns the sugar into fat.

Analysis: According to Livestrong, if sugar calories are not used as energy immediately after they are consumed, they are converted into body fat. This process of conversion is called lipogenesis. And, if you are not doing any physical activity to burn this extra fat, this is going to get deposited in your body only. Therefore the Infographic(above) claim is true here.

3. After 40 minutes 

Infographic claims: Caffeine in the drink causes your blood pressure to rise, more sugar to be dumped into your bloodstream, and your pupils to dilate.

Analysis: As per Coca-Cola website only, the drink also contains caffeine. It is a fact that caffeine causes a temporary increase in blood pressure. but this intake is less than caffeine we get from a cup of coffee. So, the amount of Caffeine present in the coke can is not a big problem here. However, researchers concluded that caffeine might be harmful to people with hypertension.

According to Livestrong, caffeine interacts with adenosine receptors in the brain and adrenaline increases. Because of the increased adrenaline (“fight or flight” hormone), pupils dilate after caffeine ingestion.

4. After 45 minutes

Infographic claims: The body ups your dopamine production, which stimulates the pleasure centres of your brain, much as the drug does. The image is considering heroin in comparison.

Analysis: We all very well know that caffeine is addictive. However, caffeine represents a minimal risk when compared to other stimulant drugs. And again, the infographic(above) claim is exaggerated.

5. After 60 minutes 

Infographic claims:
  • The phosphoric acid binds calcium, magnesium and zinc in your lower intestine, providing a further boost in metabolism. When this gets compounded by high doses of sugar and artificial sweeteners, it increases the urinary excretion of calcium.
  • Now you will flush out the bonded calcium, magnesium and zinc that was headed to your bones as well as sodium, electrolyte and water in the form of urine.
  • I short, many important nutrients get robbed from your body after having a can of Coke.
Analysis:  It is a fact that caffeine is a diuretic, which causes increased urination. Aerated drinks such as Coke might seem to quench your thirst, but ultimately they cause you to lose fluid.So, the infographic(above) claims are very alarming and we should understand the fact that regular consumption of Coke and other processed foods and drinks, can lead to higher blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

It’s common knowledge that too much sugar is harmful to our health and waistline. So be careful about your food and drink choices. Moreover, as per studies, there could be calcium loss because of these drinks and that eventually hits the risk of osteoporosis especially in women.

Speak Stop


  1. That's a detailed study and even if the infographic is exaggerated, I prefer limiting the intake of fizzy drinks. The long term harm is way too worrying.

  2. I don't know if its exaggerated or not. I don't like to consume them but it's really a good thought to write on this

  3. Really detailed and well researched analysis. It really goes to show that you cannot take everything you read on social media at face value

  4. Thank you for the research - well balanced and well researched!

  5. Wow! I knew these facts about coke but not in so much details. Thanks for sharing this informative post.

  6. Thanks for this balanced and impartial analysis of the infographic on coke. Quite an informative post.

  7. Very helpful detailed analysis! Thanks for sharing.

  8. Quite detailed informative post. Infographic proves how easily one tries to fool public by playing with scientific terminology. However, Diet Coke, consumed occasionally, might cause less harm to teeth and health.


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