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Home » Is TikTok’s Viral ‘Healthy Coke’ Really Better For You? A Dietician Tells All

Is TikTok’s Viral ‘Healthy Coke’ Really Better For You? A Dietician Tells All

by News Desk
  • A “healthy coke” recipe has gone viral on TikTok in recent days, but some viewers are skeptical about whether it ~actually~ has nutritional benefits.
  • Women’s Health reached out to a trusted expert, a registered dietician and nutritionist, who weighed in on the trend and health claims.
  • Here’s what that expert said:

    For years, nutrition experts have made it clear that soda isn’t exactly the ~healthiest~ thing you can put in your body. But, if you love the fizzy stuff, it’s understandable to want to try to find a workaround. Enter TikTok.

    Meet the expert: Scott Keatley, an RD and nutritionist, is a co-owner of Keatley Medical Nutrition Therapy, which focuses on managing specific diseases and conditions as they relate to nutrition.

    There’s a “healthy Coke” recipe making its viral rounds on the social media platform, promising a healthier alternative to Coke that involves mixing balsamic vinegar, La Croix, and a lot of ice. Hmm…

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      The drink was popularized by TikTok user Amanda Jones, who said she got the recipe from her Pilates instructor. “I am not joking you—it tastes just like a Coke,” she says in the video. The drink involves a “splash” of balsamic vinegar and “any sparkling beverage” with “any flavor,” that you combine together over ice.

      “It tastes like a Coke and it’s healthy and good for you,” Jones raved before taking a sip and saying, “so good.”

      People had a LOT of thoughts in the comments. “Zero chance that tastes like Coke,” one user said. “Just bc it’s the same color as Coke does not mean it’s the same thing,” another helpfully pointed out. “This totally didn’t work for me. Don’t waste your time, or your La Croix,” another chimed in.

      Taste aside…is this ‘healthy coke’ actually healthy? Women’s Health asked an expert to weigh in on the viral trend.

      While the recipe certainly has an “odd combination” of ingredients, from a nutrition perspective, the balsamic only adds about five calories of sugar to the LaCroix, says Scott Keatley, RD, of Keatley Medical Nutrition Therapy.

      And balsamic vinegar is generally good for you. “Balsamic should be made from fermented grapes and has quite a bit of acetic acid naturally which contains probiotic bacteria and may help keep your gut healthy,” he continues. “One of the best things about balsamic is the polyphenols which may assist with keeping blood pressure in check and keep your skin looking good.”

      All in, Keatley says this viral recipe is “very similar to Diet Coke” from a nutrition standpoint (ie, it’s not nutrient-dense), but “certainly better than full-sugar soda.”

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      His advice? Opt for a zero-sugar soda option if you’re really craving a fizzy fix. “The non-nutritive sweeteners have been shown to be safe and will not increase blood sugar,” Keatley says. Some of his suggestions include Coke Zero, Swoon, Virgil’s, and Seven-Up Zero. You can also add fruit to your sparkling water.

      “A soda water like Perrier, some mango purée, and a little bit of jalapeño makes a really interesting beverage,” he says.

      Now that actually does sound super yummy. BRB.

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