Carbonated water, caramel color, phosphoric acid, aspartame, potassium benzoate, natural flavors, potassium citrate, acesulfame potassium, caffeine.
Carbonated water. Ok. Caramel color. Eh? Phophoric acid, now were getting somewhere. Also used as a rust remover and sold under the name "rust killer" (no joke). Use caution with this stuff to avoid acid burns of the skin and especially the eyes. It also has been linked to lower bone density according to American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Aspartame. Another miracle diet sweetner also known as Equal or Nutrasweet. Now, I could rant about how this ingredient causes cancer and tell you about study x, y and z but I won't. Based on government research reviews and recommendations from advisory bodies such as the European Commission’s Scientific Committee on Food and the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives, aspartame has been found to be safe for human consumption by more than ninety countries worldwide. In 1999, FDA officials described the safety of aspartame as "clear cut" and stated that the product is "one of the most thoroughly tested and studied food additives the agency has ever approved."
BULLSHIT. If you want to go on and believe that, be my guest and eat and drink aspartame all day long. For me you would have to stick a fork in my eye to get me to consume it. I'm not even going to waste my time in presenting an opposing argument or research. Here's my research, the FDA stands for F*cking Drink it America. Drink coke zero, red bull, clear pepsi, pepsi max, slim fast, viagra cocktails, whatever the hell you want.
Moving on, potassium benzoate. In combination with ascorbic acid (vitamin C), sodium and potassium benzoate may form benzene, a known carcinogen. Enjoy.
Potassium citrate. This is helpful in treating gout. I'm sure it tastes delicious too!
Acesulfame potassium. Another fake sweetner that is 180-200 times sweeter than old school sucrose (table sugar). Much like aspartame it is a "suspected" carcinogen and has been shown to stimulate insulin secretions. Fun.
The Lucky Ones:If you are lucky enough to live in Venezuela (they actually just banned its sale), Chile, Mexico and some Central American countries you get a special Coke Zero formula we don't get here in the US. Their special blend contains sodium cyclamate, a chemical whose sale has been banned in the US since 1969, when it was shown to cause bladder cancer. Since then, it has been linked to testicular atrophy, a medical condition in which the male reproductive organs diminish in size and may be accompanied by a loss of function. This does not refer to temporary changes, such as those brought on by cold.
Think about it, you could drink this delicious calorie free beverage while sitting on the beach in Cabo San Lucas. Laying in the sun getting a tan, keeping away that pot belly with your no calorie soda (it's not diet soda - that's for chicks; it's cool, it's Coke Zero), get bladder cancer and have your genitals shrink. That would make a good ad to run during spring break. Drink Corona not Coke Zero or your penis will shrink.
If you where lucky enough to google Coke Zero when it first came out a few years ago you might have found a really great blog named The Zero Movement. On it, a guy rants about why life is so full of stuff to do and how it would be so much nicer if there was, well, zero to do. Luckily, there is now, we have COKE ZERO! Well it turns out that guy actually was the Coca-Cola Corporation posing as a 20-something cool guy. No joke, they set up a fake blog. When it was discovered that Coca-Cola set up this fake site, someone decided to start their own blog called The Zero Movement Sucks. Hilarious. Both are no longer up and running but their memory will live on like a Celion Dion song. Top of the world!