A New Zealand coroner’s report says that Coca-Cola contributed to the death of a woman who drank 10 liters of the soda a day, the BBC reports.
After New Zealand resident Natasha Harris’ death three years ago, coroner David Crerar said Harris’ daily intake of Coca-Cola was a “substantial factor” in her death by cardiac arrest.
The company contests the link, saying that there is no proof that Coke caused her death, the BBC reports.
“I find that when all the available evidence is considered, were it not for the consumption of very large quantities of Coke by Natasha Harris, it is unlikely that she would have died when she died and how she died,” Crerar’s report said.
The 10 liters of Coca-Cola Harris consumed each day exceeds recommended limits of daily caffeine and sugar intake, at twice the recommended caffeine intake and 11-times the recommended sugar intake.
Harris’ family said she had an addiction to Coca-Cola and experienced withdrawal symptoms, amidst many years of poor health.
The coroner believes there were warning signs early on that Harris’ family should have taken heed of.
“The fact she had her teeth extracted several years before her death because of what her family believed was Coke-induced tooth decay, and the fact that one or more of her children were born without enamel on their teeth, should have been treated by her, and by her family, as a warning,” BBC quotes his statement as saying.
Consumers who drink large quantities of Coca-Cola products cannot hold the company responsible for health problems, but soft drink companies should be more clear about risks associated with their products, Crerar said.
In January Coca-Cola launched a commercial about their products in an effort to bring awareness to the calorie intake associated with its products, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The commercial, two minutes in length, encourages viewers to be aware of their calorie intake, while highlighting Coca-Cola’s variety of low-calorie products.
This was the first time the firm used television as a means of addressing the issue of obesity in America and calorie intake.