Soft Drinks

Soft Drinks: Main Image

Buying Tips

Both bottled and canned soft drinks are found in the beverage section of grocery and health food stores. Soft drinks are also available at virtually every convenience store—on the shelf, in the refrigerated section, or from a soda fountain.


There is a wide variety of soft drinks, including “clear,” cola, fruit flavors, and other flavors such as root beer and cream sodas. Clear soft drinks contain water, carbon dioxide, sweetener, flavors such as ginger, lemon, or lime, and other additives and preservatives. Colas contain the ingredients of clear soft drinks, with the addition of caffeine and coloring. Fruit soft drinks contain the ingredients of clear soft drinks, with the addition of fruit oils or flavorings and coloring. Diet soft drinks substitute a non-calorie sweetener, such as aspartame, in place of sugar or corn sweetener. Natural varieties, which use natural sweeteners and are free of artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, are also available.

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The information presented in the Food Guide is for informational purposes only and was created by a team of US–registered dietitians and food experts. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements, making dietary changes, or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires December 2024.