If the word “vitamin” is in something, it must be good, right? In the case of Coca-Cola Co.’s Vitaminwater, the Center for Science in the Public Interest says not so fast. They, along with consumers, have accused the soda giant of making misleading claims concerning their beverage, and a federal judge has decided their claims can move forward in a class action suit.
As reported by the Daily Mail, the Vitaminwater beverage, made popular through the likes of rap giant 50 Cent, claims to do everything from aid in weight loss to promote vision health. But, while the maker is quick to promote the vitamins they throw in, they aren’t so forthcoming about the sugar.
Vitaminwater is Loaded with Sugar
U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Levy said the case can move forward but that plaintiffs cannot seek financial damages from the company, merely injunctive relief. This simply means they can seek to stop Coca-Cola from making such health claims for their Vitaminwater products.
It’s not just the labels on the bottle, according to the National Consumers League (NCL). They say the whole marketing ploy behind Vitaminwater has served to mislead the public about what the beverage is capable of.
They point out ads where Vitaminwater is suggested as an alternative for flu shots, due to it’s immune-boosting powers. And while we’re not on the vaccine-boat here at NaturalSociety, we also know a drink with some Vitamin C and a whole lot of sugar may not be the best answer for illness prevention.
Related Read: 4 ‘Health’ Foods with more Sugar than a Twinkie
The NCL says statements made by Coca-Cola in regard to Vitaminwater are deceptive in that they imply “vitamins + water = all you need” and suggest their beverage can improve health. The drink does this while failing to mention the fact that it includes fructose or “other forms of sugar” along with the empty calories that accompany high-sugar beverages.
Consumers need to be aware of the marketing ploys used by food and beverage makers. These companies spend millions every year to market their products. They use tactics specifically because they push you to buy, with accuracy and facts coming secondary to persuasive selling. These tactics aren’t unique to Vitaminwater, though their misleading claims are the latest to catch the spotlight.
Because we can’t wait for cases like this one to work through the courts, we have to inform ourselves rather than depending on corporate American to provide the information willingly. In other words, don’t believe everything you hear about products—no matter the maker. Do your homework and choose wisely.