Coke blaming

August 21st, 2015 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Coca-Cola staff in Invercargill are understood to be on alert after angry phone calls were made to the company by a man whose partner’s death was linked to excessive coke consumption in 2010.

Christopher Hodgkinson, the partner of 30-year-old Natasha Harris who drank up to 8 litres of coke a day for several years before she died in 2010, said he made several calls to the company one day last week.

I’m waiting for someone to eat eight kilograms of celery a day, and then when they die, have their death blamed on celery.

Hodgkinson blames Coca-Cola for his partner’s death, and said he had asked the company to help him get his eight children back in the phone calls.

He had been living with Harris and their children prior to her death but lost custody in the months afterwards, he said.

If he has lost custody, despite being the only parent, then that suggests very deep issues. And they have nothing to do with Coke.

He had been given the “royal run around ” by Coca-Cola on the phone and had been angry, but had not threatened anyone in the calls, he said.

Even making the calls is bizarre. And angry parents who have lost custody of kids often do very violent things, sadly. I think it is no surprise Coke staff are being vigilant.

Maybe he could stop phoning them up, rather than go to the media.

The incident comes four years after Hodgkinson rebutted Coca-Cola claims he had made death threats against its Invercargill staff. 

This makes me wonder why he lost custody of his kids.

He had been involved in an incident which resulted in him doing jail time for a home invasion offence before being released in October, he said. 

Oh that is why. So not really anything to do with Coke.

Assistance from Coca-Cola would allow him to get into a big house which he believed would help him get his kids back.

Oh actually he is demanding they give him some money. His behaviour sounds like it is verging on the illegal – if you threaten and demand money, that is a crime.


Another stupid experiment

December 5th, 2014 at 12:00 pm by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

In an experiment similar to that of Super Size Me, in which US filmmaker Morgan Spurlock ate nothing but McDonald’s for 30 days, George Prior, a 50-year-old Los Angeles father of two has documented weight and health changes after introducing 10 cans of Coca-Cola a day into his diet. 

Super Size Me was a con. Spurlock ate 5,000 calories of food a day. Of course he out on weight. A less biased experiment saw someone eat McDonalds every day for three months, and lose weight – as they kept to 2,000 calories a day.

Drinking 10 cans of Coke a day is an extra 1400 calories a day, so every six to seven days you will put on a kg of weight. This is not because Coke is inherently bad. Just that you should not drink 10 cans of it a day.

I like Eggs Benedict. If I ate Eggs Benedict ten times a day, I’d get very unwell. If I have it once a week, it is fine.

There is no good or bad food. It is all about moderation and variety. But experiments like this are about demonising a company because they’re a large corporate.

Mr Prior used a combination of Facebook and YouTube entries to show the transformation that resulted in a 10.5 kilogram increase in his weight and a body fat increase from 9 to 16 per cent.

If you drank 3.5 litres of orange juice a day, you’d have an even bigger weight gain as there are more calories in orange juice than coke. Sure Coke has sugar (which is why I only drink Coke Zero or Diet Coke) but it is the extra calories that would have the main impact.


A good move

July 24th, 2013 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

Coca-Cola plans to start displaying the calories in its products on vending machines as a way of fighting obesity.

The beverage giant announced tonight it was was “joining the front line” in the fight against obesity with a campaign set to launch tomorrow.

As part of the campaign, it will place transparent nutritional information in more places, including vending machines, and increase the availability of small bottles like its 300ml soft drink range.

It will also offer a wider selection of low-calorie products and help get people moving by supporting physical activity programmes.

I hate nanny state anti-obesity measures around banning certain foods from tuck-shops, advertising restrictions etc. But something I am passionate on is food and drinks showing the number of calories they have. This allows us adults to make informed choices.

I think alcohol should have calorie labels, and also retail food outlets should have available calorie counts for their food, should people request it.

People would be amazed at how much weight you can lose by simply being more knowledgeable about how many calories are in what you drink or eat.

Surprise – don’t drink 10 litres of coke a day

February 13th, 2013 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Sam Boyer at Stuff reports:

Drinking too much Coke helped kill mother of eight Natasha Harris, the coroner has found.

Harris drank up to 10 litres of Coke every day – equal to more than twice the recommended safe daily limit of caffeine and almost one kilogram of sugar.

She died aged 30, on February 25, 2010, from a cardiac arrest. Her partner, Christopher Hodgkinson, found her seated on the toilet, slumped against the wall and gasping for air.

Of course 10 litres of coke a day will kill you. So will 10 litres of water or orange juice probably.

10 litres of coke is over 4,000 calories a day – and that’s without any food!

Coca-Cola has argued that the huge quantities of Coke drunk daily by Harris day could not be proven to have contributed to her death.

But in findings released today, coroner David Crerar said Harris would not have died if it wasn’t for her dependence on Coke.

Coke have never said that drinking 10 litres of coke a day won’t harm you.  If you ate 10 kgs of lamb a day it wouldn’t be great for you – but lamb is not the problem.

What is sad is that no one got her help or intervened to stop her drinking 10 litres a day.

I note the Coroner said:

He recommended the Government consider imposing caffeine and sugar warnings on soft drinks, such as those already compulsory on energy drinks.

The Coroners want their recommendations to require an official Government inquiry and response. Not going to happen when they make so many daft recommendations. I don’t think we need a warning that you should not drink 10 litres of coke a day!

McCarten on Coke

January 21st, 2013 at 11:00 am by David Farrar

Matt McCarten writes:

Let’s face it, Coca-Cola markets sugar syrup mixed with water to teenagers, rotting their teeth, giving them spotty skin and making them fat.

This was the very point that the Coke CEO was making. Coke is responsible for 2% of the average person’s daily calorie intake yet are blamed for obesity.

On the fat issue, a Gallup poll found soda drinkers were not fatter than non soda drinkers.

Few pre-teens and teenagers can resist that siren call. It helps that once the sugar addiction kicks in, it can be as strong as tobacco dependency.

Liking something is not an addiction. I love it how it is never a person’s choice. It is always an addiction. One day we’ll read about clothing addictions, toy addictions, unning addictions etc.

A bottle of Coke a day will each month add more than a kilo of lard around a customer’s belly unless they can burn it off by putting in a run of 14 hours. No wonder obesity in our children is skyrocketing.

Let’s check that. It takes around 9,000 calories to put on a kg. Standard coke is 43 calories per 100 ml, so you need to drink 21 litres of coke a month or 700 mls a day.

But if you drink diet coke or coke zero, then you can drink lots more. It is 4 calories per litre, so if you drank a litre per day it would take over six years to put on a kilo of weight.

But regardless you tend to burn off 2,000 calories a day. What is important is your total calories consumed and exercised.  I’ve lost 21 kgs and I drink lots of diet coke or coke zero.

Milk is 600 calories per litre, or around 400 calories per 700 mls to compare it to Matt’s coke equation. Drink that much milk a day and you’ll put on even more weight than coke.

Blaming coke for obesity is like blaming “society” for child abuse. It ignores the role of the individual.

8 litres of coke a day

April 20th, 2012 at 8:47 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

The sister of a woman whose partner claimed she died because she drank too much Coca-Cola says she does not hold the company responsible.

However, the woman’s partner and mother-in-law say warning labels should be put on the drink.

An inquest for mother-of-eight Natasha Harris was held in Invercargill yesterday. Ms Harris died on February 25, 2010.

Otago-Southland coroner David Crerar did not make any preliminary findings after yesterday’s inquest, however pathologist Dan Mornin said he believed Ms Harris died of cardiac arrhythmia and it was likely she was suffering from hypokalemia (low potassium) along with caffeine toxicity, which could have contributed to her death.

When asked by Mr Crerar whether it was probable her consumption of Coca-Cola had caused the hypokalemia and arrhythmia, Dr Mornin said yes, along with poor nutrition and caffeine.

At the inquest, Ms Harris’ partner, Chris Hodgkinson, said his partner consumed between 4.5 and 8 litres of Coke a day for several years before her death, and he believed this had contributed to her death.

His mother, Vivien Hodgkinson said after the inquest that warning labels should be put on Coke products.

Why just on Coke? If you drank eight litres of anything a day (even water), I’d say you would not feel too good. How can you actually drink 8 litres a day?

Drinking up to eight litres of any liquid a day can kill you, regardless of how much sugar or caffeine it contains, a Wellington dietician says.

Foodsavvy’s Sarah Elliott said that when “extreme” amounts of fluid were consumed regularly, the body’s cells could rupture.

“Ten litres of fluid a day could kill you, no matter what it is.”


Specialists recommend that humans do not drink more than four litres of liquid a day. Natasha Harris’s daily intake of Coca-Cola would have given her up to a “shocking” 3424 calories and 864 grams (or 3 1/2 cups) of sugar, Mrs Elliott said.

It is very sad for anyone to die at a young age of 30. But blaming it on coke is silly.

I suspect Harris was morbidly obese. If you are needing to drink so much fluid, you probably have diabetes. And having had eight children doesn’t help either.


March 23rd, 2012 at 7:27 pm by David Farrar

A friend left a part bottle of coke in my fridge. I didn’t look closely at the label and gulped it down, thinking it was my normal Diet Coke. Yuck – it was Vanilla Coke. It is foul stuff. I don’t understand how people can drink it.