Is There Such Thing As A Fat Blocking Soda?

pepsi-special.jpgPretty ridiculous, no? I saw this article on and didn't really believe the headline. Soda and healthy don't really come up in the same sentence unless the word "not" is in between. But apparently Pepsi had a breakthrough. Pepsi Japan is trying to make soda healthy with a new "fiber-infused" drink. This soda, named "Pepsi Special" has a chemical called dextrin, a fiber that apparently helps "reduce fat levels in the body." Pepsi, attempting to sell this product as something healthy, put out a funny commercial. The commercial is of a man trying to decide between a woman in a pizza costume, and another in a burger costume. Then the voiceover states that he doesn't have to choose if he drinks Pepsi Special, suggesting that the soda is actually healthy for you.
If this were to be sold in America I am sure that people would be skeptical. But in Japan I am sure that they do not have many problems. People in Japan are used to having strange sodas sold in their markets, so Pepsi Special is not out of the ordinary. I am not surprised that Pepsi is trying to market soda as healthy. People nowadays, in the United States especially, are trying to eat healthier and soda doesn't all into that category. Creating a soda that would really block fat would be a gold mine for Pepsi. So many people are trying to find easy ways to lose weight and the fact that they can drink soda and block fat at the same time would attract so many consumers to this product. I decided to look up this product on a different website to see if it is really legitimate. 
An article I found on says that dextrin isn't as good as it seems to be. It is apparently a tasteless gummy-like substance that is made from wheat. But it is also used to make children's glue... So should we be drinking substances with this in it? According to a spokeswoman from the British Dietetic Association, the drink is not likely to make a difference in blocking fat. Perhaps the soda could work, but like most other diet foods it should not replace fruits and vegetables or other healthy foods you should eat on a regular basis. Foods and drinks like the Pepsi Special should not be used to replace other foods, but could possibly be added to your diet. Pepsi said the drink will have a crisp aftertaste, so why not try it? There hasn't been any proof against the Pepsi Special working, so I wouldn't write it off just yet. What do you think? Is it possible for a soda to block fat?


I saw a segment about this on the Today Show this morning! The follow up article is posted here. I think this is absolutely crazy! Pepsi probably introduced this in Japan because they knew it would be torn apart by agencies like the FDA in America. Based on my knowledge of health foods and research I've done on dextrin, the only way that this soda would POSSIBLY be able to lower fat would be if the fiber suppressed the appetite of the consumer. This suppression would cause the consumer to eat less. I think its a stretch to say that the soda is the direct cause of the weight loss though.
I think this will certainly be an interesting product to follow. I wonder what Pepsi's research behind the claims look like. Have they done any studies?

Besides tasting gross, I wonder if the dextrin as any nasty side effects. Carolyn noted how the FDA would probably tear such a drink apart. It just leaves me wondering, not only could the drink not work, but could it be potentially dangerous? According to an article I found, dextrin is an artificial sweetener with no nutritional value, that can actually contribute to obesity. I don't really understand how Pepsi can claim they have a "fat-blocking" soda when the chemical they are using is an unhealthy sweetener. It all seems an awful lot like a scam to me.
Here's a link to the article I read:

I found this blog very interesting because it got me thinking about how there are hundreds of products that promise to help you lose weight but in reality they really don't. I completely agree with the article that when you hear the word soda you generally do not associate it with the world healthy. Although many sodas are 0 calories or are "diet", does that really mean that they are healthy for you? I found an article. This article is saying that selling soda as a healthy choice is all about the marketing. People will drink soda no matter what scientists are saying, but maybe in the future it will actually be considered healthy. Althoguh soda may not have a lot of calories, it is not considered a product that is full of nutrition.

I knew there a day would come when they would try to market soda as healthy. I think that when it comes down to it, every type of soda can't be good for you. It is made with unnecessary chemicals. According to FitSugar article (given below)it says that diet soda contributes to obesity, kidney problems, and messed up metabolism.
These are side effects coming from diet soda which is more chemically modified than regular soda. So you can old imagine what a "fat blocking" soda will do to you. If you want to lose weight, doing it through drinking a very high intake of chemicals may help you, but will ultimately hurt you in the end.

I read this article too and didn't really believe it. I wish you had explained why Pepsi Special is marketed as "fat-blocking". Is there a biological mechanism in the dextrin that does this? I couldn't find this mechanism in my online searches. However, what I did find was this article that was one of the few articles that talked about the benefits of dextrin. One of these benefits was an increase in "appetite satisfaction" because it is a water-soluable dietary fiber. Fiber is known for keeping us fuller, longer. If the rationale of the "fat-blocker" slogan is simply that the soda has fiber, is the slogan really accurate?
If you want to check out another article about Pepsi Special, check out this one published by Time Magazine. It expands on a lot of things mentioned in the ABC news article.

No matter how products like these are marketed, I feel like they always do more harm than good. The company in Japan might say that it's healthy, but anything with chemicals in it just doesn't seem healthy to me. But if it came to America I'm sure people would go crazy for it. Even if people didn't truly believe it, I'm sure they would try to convince themselves it was true as an excuse to drink a "healthy" soda, instead of coke, pepsi, and sprite. People will listen to anyone telling them a quick, easy, and apparently healthy way for weight loss / fat blocking. I looked into what harms dextrin could cause. As Tal said, it is found in the form of glue on envelopes and stamps. Not only that though... It is a common thickener used in junk food. An ingredient used in junk food doesn't sound too healthy to me!

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