Some drinks companies use brominated vegetable oil (BVO) to stop ingredients in fruit-flavoured soft drinks from separating out.
Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have maintained that BVOs are safe ingredients which distribute flavours more evenly in fruit-flavoured drinks. But there has been so much public pressure on these companies to use natural ingredients that several major food makers recently changed their ingredients to remove chemicals.
Buckling under pressure recently Pepsi and Coca Cola announced they would remove BVO from their beverages.
What is BVO and why is it in Sodas?
Brominated vegetable oil is a chemical additive created when vegetable oil bonds to the chemical bromine. BVO acts like an emulsifier and helps the fruity flavours mix better in the soft drink. Beverages containing BVO look hazy or cloudy.
Bromines are a part of the halide family including fluorine, chlorine and iodine and are endocrine disruptors
Why is BVO bad for health?
In very high amounts drunk over a long period of time, BVO can build up in the body and cause toxic effects.
Bromine can trigger a number of psychological problems like acute paranoia and psychotic symptoms, skin rashes and severe acne. It can also cause loss of appetite, abdominal pain, fatigue, metallic taste and cardiac arrhythmias.