These soft drinks (displayed to the right) are some of the most common beverages in the United States. When consumed as they are (plain or classic) they are extremely potent as one can of Coca Cola (330 ml) contains 140 calories, 39 grams of sugar (see the image below), and around 50 mg of caffeine (which is half the caffeine amount in a regular coffee cup and roughly the same as in a cup of black tea). In the last 25 years Americans have doubled the amount of soft drinks they consume, each individual drinking roughly 1.6 cans a day. The push for healthier drink choices has forced the companies to introduce diet drinks that supposedly have less sugar and fewer calories, but can cause other palpable health problems. But today's post is focused more on English vocabulary, rather than health. It is ironic that such a popular drink has different names all across the United States. Do you know what it's called in Michigan (north) or in Florida (south)? Check out the map below.
The states marked blue call any beverage (Coke, Fanta, Sprite) "pop" referring most likely to the carbonation.
The states marked green call it "soda" (note the northwest and the southeast of the USA).
The states marked red call any soft drink "coke."
So, next time you're in the US and would like to get a soft drink at a gas station or at a restaurant remember what they call it! But better still, stay away from it as it is loaded on sugar that you don't need: