Vegans strictly don’t consume animals or animal-derived products. Meat, dairy, milk, eggs, honey, etc., are off the table. Even if the milk is organic or directly from a farm, you still cannot consume it according to vegan norms.
Veganism is more than avoiding certain foods. It is a lifestyle that seeks to reduce suffering and inhumane practices.
The main reason is the poor treatment of animals. If you are transitioning to veganism, you might like to check out Healthy Foods Vegans Consume. This article will explore why these ingredients are unacceptable and answer the question: Is Diet Dr Pepper Vegan?
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Is Diet Dr Pepper Vegan?
Diet Dr Pepper is entirely vegan, mainly comprising carbonated water, food coloring, artificial sweetener aspartame, additives, flavors, and caffeine. None of these products are sourced from animals, making Diet Dr Pepper vegan.
Even if you want to consume regular Dr Pepper, it is still vegan-friendly. Its composition is mostly carbonated water and high-fructose corn syrup. Like Diet Dr Pepper, it includes caffeine, flavoring, and food coloring agents.
Read on to find out exactly what it is made of, nutritional information, other vegan sodas from Dr Pepper, and healthier vegan beverage options.
What Exactly Is Diet Dr Pepper?
Dr Pepper is like most sodas. It is a sweetened carbonated drink with fruit and spice flavors added. Dr Pepper also boasts 23 different options, from cherry, cola, and pepper to blackberry, apricot, and caramel.
You might wonder if such a widely popular drink boasting 23 flavors and many ingredients is indeed vegan. Vegans are always aware that highly processed food having numerous elements can often contain animal-derived additives.
As per the ingredients list of each product on Dr Pepper’s website, the soft drink includes high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS), carbonated water, phosphoric acid, caramel color, natural and artificial flavors, caffeine, and sodium benzoate preservative.
You will find that most sodas are vegan, including Dr Pepper and the only varying factors are the natural and artificial flavors used.
Dr Pepper also has other vegan flavors like Caffeine-free Dr Pepper, Dr Pepper Cream Soda, Dr Pepper Cherry, and Dr Pepper Cherry Vanilla.
Natural and Artificial Flavors
The most natural and artificial flavors are titled in the ingredient list and don’t necessarily list their compounds. You might see Red 40, Red Lake 40, Yellow 6, etc.
They are usually plant-based, and most vegans consume these products because there isn’t a way of truly knowing. If you are highly particular, it is best to avoid highly processed foods and stick to whole plant foods.
Most highly processed products come with their fair share of additives. Unusual ingredients tend to cause red flags for vegans. Dr Pepper products contain sodium benzoate, sodium phosphate, and phosphoric acid.
Sodium benzoate is a synthetic ingredient used as a preservative in acidic foods.
Sodium phosphate is made by reacting finely ground phosphate rock with sulfuric acid, which is then reacted with sodium hydroxide. It is considered vegan because it is derived from phosphate rock.
Phosphoric acid is used to give a tangy taste to the beverage. It is not animal-derived, its production is cruelty-free, and it involves phosphate rock.
Size 20 fl oz
|PER SERVING||% DAILY VALUE|
|TOTAL FAT: 0 G||0%|
|SODIUM: 100 MG||4%|
|TOTAL CARBOHYDRATES: 0 G||0%|
|PROTEIN: 0 G|
6 Ingredients to Look Out for in Sodas
Vegans are usually beware of these animal-derived additives, which can be found in sodas.
Ester Gum: Ester gum usually consists of glycerol which can sometimes originate from animals. You would need 24,000 pounds of fat to create 2000 pounds of glycerol. Sodas containing this ingredient are not vegan.
Cochineal: This ingredient is listed as E120 on beverages. It’s a natural dye of red color and has been in use for centuries. It is also known as carmine. Female cochineal insects or even their eggs are the primary sources of carmine.
Vegans often debate whether insects are vegan or not. It depends on your choice.
Vitamin D3: Vitamin D3 is usually derived from the oil of sheep’s wool. It is derived from fish oil or lanolin and is not considered vegan.
Honey: Honey can be quite a rare ingredient used in sodas, but you may have to look for some special sodas containing honey.
Natural Flavors: It is a catch-all term listed on sodas. It means that products can be both plant- and animal-based. Another ingredient called caramel color is used, but in a few cases, it is not vegan. You mostly wouldn’t have to worry about these two with Dr Pepper.
Red 40: Red 40 is an ingredient that can be used to make a caramel color. It is derived from the petroleum industry, and a common misconception is that it’s pork-based.
Red 40 is considered vegan, but it is a food dye tested on animals. Many vegan circles debate this point, but it is up to you to make that choice. Read here to learn more about the ethical aspects of Red 40.
Other Vegan Soda Brands
Most sodas are considered vegan. Some vegans stay away from sodas that list natural flavors and rarely do sodas also contain honey. It is important to remember that being vegan is more than just the ingredients.
The lifestyle includes reducing suffering to whatever extent possible, and you may not agree on all brand practices. It is also important to note that Fanta contains Red 40.
Ingredients: carbonated water, caramel color, phosphoric acid, caffeine, high-fructose corn syrup, natural flavors.
Ingredients: carbonated water, aspartame, potassium benzoate, natural flavors, citric acid, caffeine, caramel color, phosphoric acid.
Ingredients: carbonated water, natural flavors, potassium citrate, phosphoric acid, aspartame, potassium benzoate, acesulfame potassium, caffeine, caramel color.
Ingredients: carbonated water, flavoring, color (caramel E150d), phosphoric acid, caffeine.
Ingredients: carbonated water, color (caramel E150d), acidity regulator (sodium citrate), acids (phosphoric acid, citric acid), flavoring (including caffeine), sweeteners (aspartame, acesulfame), preservative (potassium sorbate).
Ingredients: carbonated water, sodium citrate, high-fructose corn syrup, natural flavors, citric acid, sodium benzoate.
Ingredients: carbonated water, citric acid, high-fructose corn syrup, sodium benzoate, natural flavors, sodium polyphosphates, modified food starch, glycerol ester rosin, Yellow 6, Red 40.
Ingredients: carbonated water, citric acid, high-fructose corn syrup, concentrated orange juice, sodium benzoate (preserves freshness), natural flavor, sodium citrate, erythorbic acid (preserves freshness), caffeine, gum arabic, calcium disodium EDTA (to protect flavor), brominated vegetable oil, Yellow 5.
Healthy Soft Drink Alternatives
No matter how much you love Dr Pepper, you might look forward to reducing your sugar intake. While the abovementioned brands may be vegan, they are certainly not the healthiest. Here are some options which are both healthy and vegan!
Dr Zevia Zero Calorie Soda
If you love Dr Pepper’s flavors but want a zero-calorie alternative and avoid artificial flavors, Dr Zevia is an excellent pick for you. This drink has a simple ingredient list and is sweetened with stevia leaf extract.
Stevia has a zero glycemic index, which, you’ll be fascinated to know, is less than that of natural sugar.
The rest of the ingredients are carbonated water, tartaric acid, natural flavors, caffeine, and citric acid. It also doesn’t contain caramel color or other dyes. It is perfect if you want to keep your diet as healthy and natural as possible.
LIVE Kombucha Pure Doctor Soda
This drink is not a soda in the traditional sense. It is an excellent probiotic drink that makes sure you get loads of good B-Vitamins and other necessary nutrients.
Kombucha is a fermented tea drink that has been around for ages. LIVE brought a new twist to it by introducing kombucha sodas.
It contains good antioxidants to support your immune system and high glucosamine levels that maintain joint health. This flavor has only 5g of sugar per serving.
The company’s sodas include a multitude of other flavors like ginger, lemon, blueberry, etc.
Vegans consider a specific set of food that adheres to vegan norms. Consumption of animals and their by-products is a no-go. You might be just transitioning into veganism and looking forward to switching to healthy alternatives.
Diet Dr Pepper and most sodas are considered vegan; however, they aren’t the healthiest options out there, assuming they are highly processed foods. There are also other minor ingredients to consider, and you can choose whatever you’re comfortable with.
If you want to live the best and most natural life, avoid highly processed foods.