New York, Oct. 14 (Reuters): Health experts yesterday dismissed claims that a new green tea-based drink would burn calories by speeding up the drinker’s metabolic rate, and cast doubt on the chances it would help people lose weight.
Beverage giant Coca-Cola Co. unveiled plans on Thursday to start selling Enviga, a sparkling, caffeinated soft drink, claiming that consuming three 12-ounce cans over 24 hours could burn off between 60 to 100 calories.
Coke has developed the drink, which will come in three flavours — green tea, berry and peach — in partnership with Swiss food giant Nestle.
A spokesman for Coca-Cola said the company was not marketing the drink as a weight-loss product, but as “a small step that consumers can take to gently invigorate their metabolism and burn additional calories”.
Marion Nestle, a nutrition professor, said the calorie-burning claims were based on a research study that was in experimental stages with no proof the drink would help normal people under normal conditions burn calories and lead to any weight loss.
“The idea that this drink will help people lose weight is just ridiculous,” Nestle told Reuters. “It is an example of the lengths to which companies will go to sell products.”
Atlanta-based Coca-Cola said Enviga contained green tea extracts, calcium and caffeine. The product will go on sale in the US northeast in November and roll out nationally in January.
A spokeswoman said the Nestle Research Center in Lausanne, Switzerland, studied the benefits of green tea for decades as part of its global tea business.
A recent study revealed that consuming the equivalent of three cans of Enviga a day boosted calorie burning by speeding up the metabolism and increasing energy use.