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The First ‘Diet’ Soda

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After hitting the gym the other day, a friend of mine and I, picked up a couple of subs and diet sodas and went to my house and ate them outside to enjoy a sunny September afternoon. We were both drinking diet soda and it got me wondering, ‘When was diet soda first introduced.’

I did some research and it all began in 1952 in Brooklyn, New York with Kirsch Bottling Company, when they introduced ‘No-Cal’ a diet Ginger Ale. It was sold regionally in New York and was introduced for diabetics and not for dieters. Nationally, diet soda started in 1958 with Royal Crown Cola and Diet Rite, followed in 1962 with Diet Dr.Pepper and in 1963 Coca-Cola introduced ‘Tab‘ and in 1965 Diet Pespi joined the growing market of diet soda.

The diet soda in the 60’s were sweetened by ‘cyclamtes’ and ‘saccaharin’. Cyclamates were banned by the FDA in 1970 and saccahrin was banned from 1977 to 1991. Aspartame was introduced in 1982 and that’s when the diet soda market started to soar! 

Some reports say ‘diet soda’ can actually lead to increased weight and some wonder how safe ‘aspartame’ is? In fact, diet soda sales have dropped in the past few years and flavored waters and tea have become more popular.

Diet Mountain Dew is my favorite, but I too have cut back, I use to drink 2, 20 ounce bottles each day and now I’ll drink maybe 2 liters per week. There you go, a quick history of ‘diet soda’. Which are your favorites?

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