Coke’s new ad campaign: Drink your way to obesity
Published: Monday, January 21, 2013
Updated: Monday, January 21, 2013 23:01
Coca-Cola came out with a new campaign last week that finally addresses the connection between sugary sodas and obesity. A two-minute ad titled “Come Together” highlights that obesity is a problem in our country. The commercial claims that it is a problem that we as a nation must find a solution to, and the company claims to be part of that solution.
In reality, Coca-Cola and the rest of the soda industry are one of the main contributors to obesity in this country.
It is easy to see through the glossy marketing campaign strategies. Coke is assigning blame not to themselves, but to consumers. The narrator of “Come Together” claims that “all calories count, no matter where they come from, including Coca-Cola and everything else with calories. If you eat and drink more calories than you burn off, you’ll gain weight.”
This is just plain condescending and belittling to the public. I don’t need a beverage company to explain to me how daily caloric intake works.
It is easy to see Coke’s true intention: to confuse the public. It is ridiculously easy to consume hundreds of calories in just liquid form if you are not mindful of what you are drinking. All of those extra calories on top of food intake adds up to a path toward obesity or at least dampening efforts to lose weight or get fit.
If they remove the blame from themselves, it opens the possibility for the misinformed public to doubt the truth that sodas are really bad for you.
Another ad, “Be OK”, shows different “playful” ways of burning the amount of calories in a 12 oz can of Coke. One is to “let your dog be your GPS for 20 minutes”.
This sets up the idea that the only issue here is that people need to exercise to burn off the calories from Coke products so they won’t be obese. However, that is just one aspect of the problem.
Coke points out the 180 low calorie or calorie free beverages they sell for those looking for healthy options. While Coke is quick to hail their calorie free drinks as a healthy option, the artificial sweeteners in the drinks may actually be worse than drinking the version full of sugar (or high fructose corn syrup, which is another part of the issue).
There have been several medical studies that strongly suggest a correlation between obesity and artificial sweeteners.
A 2012 scientific study at the University of California - San Diego and San Diego State University on the brain’s reaction to sugar and artificial sweeteners found that regular consumption of artificial sweeteners may make your brain numb to real sugar, which fosters overeating.
A University of Texas study from 2005 followed soda drinkers for eight years. The study found a “41 percent increase in risk of being overweight for every can or bottle of diet soft drink a person consumes each day”.
Maybe Coke is right when they say we should all come together to find a solution for obesity. The first step, in fact, may be to stop listening to their propaganda and drinking their chemical laden drinks. Let’s think (and drink) for ourselves.