Your fate is not completely written in your DNA. Environmental conditions can certainly change your life significantly, and you can even control some risk factors to your benefit. Sure, some things like poverty aren't quite under anyone's direct control (and it has a measurable detrimental effect on kids' DNA). But if you're looking for some more good reasons to make a new year's resolution, maybe think about how you can change your epigenetics for the better?
Exercise apparently changes how genes are expressed. The field of epigenetics isn't well understood yet, but there are a lot of factors that can change how our genes send signals to our bodies. By studying people riding a stationary bicycle using only one leg, researchers could find evidence of genetic differences in the muscles of legs that exercised and that did not. [url]
A vast number of soft drinks are available, and some of the most popular ones seem to have started as medicinal tonics (even the ones that aren't called "energy drinks" nowadays). Coca-cola was once a headache medicine that contained an unhealthy amount of cocaine -- that wasn't completely removed until 1929. Here are just a few other strange sodas with some unusual natural ingredients.
It's not easy to introduce a new soda (or pop or whatever you like to call carbonated soft drinks). Just try to find a bottle of New Coke, Crystal Pepsi, OK Soda or 7Up Gold -- and those are just the discontinued sodas that had some significant marketing campaigns behind them. The successful introduction of diet sodas has evolved into a trend toward "healthier" sodas with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, real sugar, no BVO, herbal supplements and all sorts of other ingredients that might provide some kind of health benefit. However, some of these healthy sodas are dying off because consumers don't seem to want sodas that sound too good for you. Here are just a few examples of healthier sodas you might want to try.
Making your own carbonated soft drinks has a few benefits -- from knowing where all the ingredients came from (eg. no brominated vegetable oil) to getting the satisfaction of creating your own custom flavoring. It's not quite as simple as punching a button on a vending machine, but it's not exactly rocket science, either. Here are just a few links on being your own soda jerk.
Breakfast is supposedly the more important meal of the day. But does it matter what you eat for breakfast? There are plenty of incredibly unhealthy-sounding breakfast menus, but people are always coming up with even more outrageous breakfast items. Here are just a few examples of how kids can start their day.
Sodastream is a cool new company that allows consumers to make their own carbonated beverages at home. Given its popularity, largely due to its ease of use, SodaStream’s stock has been on a run the last few months. It also possesses the potential to disrupt to established beverage companies like Pepsi and Coke.
Not surprisingly, SodaStream would like to advertise this fact. In fact, it is so keen on advertising the relative benefits of its product over the more traditional route of buying pre-made soda from the store that the company ponied up for a Super Bowl commercial. Unfortunately for SodaStream, the ad was rejected by CBS, not because it was too risque, but because it “disparages” other major advertisers (which is apparently more objectionable than borderline softcore porn a la GoDaddy and Mercedes). As Ad Age reported:
The content of its planned commercial seemed to have concerned CBS because it was a direct hit at two other Super Bowl sponsors and heavy network TV advertisers: Coke and Pepsi.
How disparaging was SodaStream that its ads were pulled from television? Well, it simply pointed out that SodaStream was more environmentally friendly than drinking off-the-shelf sodas because, with SodaStream, “you could save more than 2,000 bottles a year.” Wow, that is incendiary. Not safe for public consumption!
The majority decided that the ad could be seen to tell people not to go to supermarkets and buy soft drinks, [and] instead help to save the environment by buying a SodaStream. [SodaStream] was also told that it constituted denigration of the bottled-drinks market.
Hypocritically, U.S. broadcasters have allowed Pepsi to air Super Bowl ads that bashed Coke directly, as Ad Age also pointed out:
Interestingly enough, Pepsi has scored big points with viewers over the years by showing Super Bowl ads with Coke deliverymen abandoning their employer wholesale for a sip of a Pepsi drink.
Moral of this story: Pepsi and Coke can attack each other over trivial differences in their products, but don’t attack the business model of big incumbent advertisers.
Fortunately, there is an upside for SodaStream. All the controversy that these ads have stirred has generated a buzz around them. The SodaStream “banned Super Bowl ad” has already generated more than two million hits on YouTube in two days and generated a media buzz around the company itself. And that’s without having to splash $3.8 million worth of cash for a Super Bowl commercial. Another example of the Streisand Effect in action.
[SodaStream is running a commercial during the Super Bowl, but it was forced to replace Coke and Pepsi with fictional soda companies. However, that ad only has a little more than 17,000 YouTube views in the last two days.]
Water fountains have improved somewhat over the years, but soda machines are really getting quite advanced. Not just limited to refrigerating sugary beverages, these vending machines are going to start tracking consumer behavior and offering some entertainment along with a frosty refreshment. Here are just a few examples of high-tech vending machines trying to connect with customers to sell more soft drinks.
The Cola Wars have been over for a long time. As usual in war, there are no real winners -- just a lot of wasted spending. Now that we're giving peace a chance, here are just a few lingering concerns over these dark-colored soft drinks.
There are a lot of different soft drinks targeting nearly every conceivable market. It's almost amazing that potable water is generally free, and there's still a multi-billion dollar industry for non-alcoholic beverages. What are they putting in water that people just can't get enough of? Here are just a few examples.
The famous Pepsi Challenge was reportedly introduced by John Sculley, but despite the conclusion that more people prefer Pepsi, Coke still seems to outsell Pepsi in most (not all!) parts of the world. The original formulas for both colas seem to be in the public domain, but copycat colas haven't exactly caught on. Here are a few other drinks that have a long way to go before getting into a cola war.