Earth Eats: Real Food, Green Living

Soda Sales On The Decline For Ninth Straight Year

As soda sales drop for a ninth straight year, diet soda sees a particularly large plummet amid health concerns.

empty coke bottle

Photo: Chris-Håvard Berge (Flickr)

Overall soda sales dropped 3 percent last year.

Soda is in decline — and it isn’t just the corn syrupy, calorie-laden stuff, either.

Purchases of diet soda dropped last year, further accelerating a ninth straight year of decline.

Companies like Coca-Cola and Pepsi Co. have relied upon zero-calorie soda sales to boost declines in the sugary sodas criticized by health officials.

Diet sodas haven’t escaped health concerns. Recent studies have found diet soda can mess with metabolism and cause addictive cycles.

If that isn’t enough, a new study presented at the American College of Cardiology’s Annual Scientific Session found that older healthy women who consume two or more diet drinks a day are at a greater risk for cardiovascular problems.

The study is the largest conducted to examine diet soda and heart health. Of the 59,614 post-menopausal women studied, those who drink diet soda were 30 percent more likely to have a cardiovascular problem than those who don’t.

Overall soda sales dropped 3 percent last year. 2014 has seen additional decline — to date, soda sales in the U.S. have dropped 1.9 percent this year.

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Liz Leslie

Liz Leslie is a journalist based in Bloomington, Indiana. When she's not writing about food, she's likely eating food. Or dreaming about food.

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  • MaureenABA

    The non-alcoholic beverage industry has a long tradition of innovation and bringing more low- and no-calorie beverages to market. Our member companies expanding product portfolios include a wide variety of portion sizes and calorie counts. In fact, 45 percent of all non-alcoholic beverages sold today have zero calories. Our dedication to providing abundant choices will continue so that consumers may decide which beverages fit their individual lifestyles.

    With respect to the other research presented at the American College of Cardiology’s meeting, this study’s actual results do not show that drinking diet beverages causes cardiovascular events among any population. The lead author himself even reinforces this fact in a news release. Being overweight, however, is a
    major risk factor for heart disease. Diet beverage consumption has been shown to help with weight loss as part of an overall weight management plan, with numerous studies repeatedly demonstrating their benefits in helping to reduce calorie intake.

    In sum, consumers should have every confidence in enjoying our products, based on the vast body of science confirming their safety.
    -Maureen Beach, American Beverage Association

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