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March 04, 2006

Fact for the Day

Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

According to The Straight Dope, "Per capita soft drink consumption has doubled since 1970; the typical American currently consumes 56 gallons per year." Pass me another Big Gulp, would you please?

Best,

Michael

posted by Michael at March 4, 2006




Comments

I'd be interested in knowing the change from say the 80s to now, or the 90's to now, with the advent of all the healthy fruit drinks and happy water. It seems to me that the 80s showed a big push in direction towards a healthier lifestyle and may give a very different picture of what we're drinking in gallons. While there would most likely be an increase in soda consumption, I doubt that it would be as dramatic.

Posted by: susan on March 4, 2006 7:42 AM



Also, from what I have seen (and read) people are becoming addicted to Diet Coke relative to Classic Coke. Well, not addicted. You know what I mean.

Posted by: Ian Lewis on March 4, 2006 10:55 AM



I love the way my favorite fast food restaurants have the drink machines out so that the clientele can refill as often as is pleasing; and for me that is at least three times. Back in the seventies free refills were considered profit margin busters. I guess they learned that there are people like me who chose their dining locations based on whether our thirsts can get thoroughly quenched. (And yes, for me its Diet Coke all the time.)

Posted by: al on March 4, 2006 2:47 PM



I love the way my favorite fast food restaurants have the drink machines out so that the clientele can refill as often as is pleasing; and for me that is at least three times. Back in the seventies free refills were considered profit margin busters. I guess they learned that there are people like me who chose their dining locations based on whether our thirsts can get thoroughly quenched. (And yes, for me its Diet Coke all the time.)

Posted by: al on March 4, 2006 2:48 PM



I was thinking about your recent remarks on portion size while I was watching Gun Crazy last week.*

At one point our murderous hero and heroine stop into a diner for hamburgers. The coffee cups were about three inches across and two and a half inches deep - and the hamburgers were no bigger than the coffee cups! What's more, the coffee cups were thick china, so they probably held maybe six ounces of coffee at the most, probably closer to five.

Nowadays we serve the stuff in buckets.


* - Now where else but 2 Blowhards could you read a sentence like that?

Posted by: Brian on March 4, 2006 4:32 PM



This is a result of the use of high fructose corn syrup. This material does not make you feel full, even though you are ingesting a lot of calories. Obesity in America is the result of HFCS, not the other suspects. Expect to hear lots more about this in the future.

Posted by: Lexington Green on March 4, 2006 7:17 PM



The cool thing is that you can STILL get Tab, at least in NYC. I feel as if I'm happily back in 1975 every time I drink it. At that point, Atkins hadn't been invented, quite, and everyone was on Dr Stillman's Quick Weight Loss Diet and reading Adelle Davis' nutrition books. But a lot of the old standbys, like No-Cal sodas, are gone...and I haven't even seen 7-Up in ages. It has been largely replaced by Sprite.

Posted by: winifer skattebol on March 4, 2006 8:46 PM



Average of 56 gallons a year...that's all? I think that would be a slow week for me. I'm a Diet Pepsi man myself. I burned out on Diet Coke years ago -- it seemed to have something like a metallic caramel aftertaste.

Meanwhile, well-meaning friends keep sending me these Internet scare stories about Nutrasweet metabolizing into formaldehyde and pickling one's insides, which information of course the Big Pop Interests are trying to suppress...

When I was in Paris ten years ago, the more traditional bistros sold Coke in small bottles for about the equivalent of three dollars apiece, which of course went nowhere near lasting me through an entire meal. A refill, however, meant another bottle and another three dollars on the tab. I was so happy to discover a T.G.I.Friday's one evening -- being an American chain, they knew about "free refills" there!

Posted by: Dwight Decker on March 5, 2006 1:49 AM



I loathe soda. And this seems like the forum in which to say that its aesthetic offense is even greater than its health risks. Nutrasweet makes my blood curdle; even thinking too much about a Diet Coke or Snackwells cake is unpleasant. I drink real fruit juice, milk, and booze. Good booze -- gin or whiskey (or Chartreuse, yeah!)-- not the potato+candy that seems to be taking over. What the hell is wrong with people's palates, to accept a Mr. Pibb from a fountain?

Posted by: J. Goard on March 5, 2006 2:39 AM



J.Goard: I agree with you, up to the whiskey part (vodka or cognac for me instead. And Lillet.)

All "soft" drinks taste like especially mean cheap liquid soap.

Posted by: Tat on March 5, 2006 8:44 AM



What with my extreme addiction to diet soda, I figure I'm making a modest contribution to the nationwide per capita figures :)
Yes, I know I probably drink too much of the stuff, but it's my only addiction: I don't smoke, drink very little alcohol, and try to avoid junk food. So one little vice is okay ...

Posted by: Peter on March 5, 2006 2:40 PM



I'm not sure diet soda is a problem, although for me it's undrinkable. The article does remind me of the old Sam Cooke song "We're Having a Party" about the Cokes being on the table as a festive note. In those days one didn't drink soda all day, every day. It was a real treat. Same for ice cream. They cost money. And don't get me started on people paying a dollar for a bottle full of - WATER!! Weird.

Posted by: Robert Speirs on March 6, 2006 5:20 PM






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