“Because of the product’s use of the term ‘diet,’ and its lack of calories, consumers reasonably believe that drinking Diet Coke will assist in weight loss or management,” according to the lawsuit, as quoted by Top Class Actions.
Among studies cited by plaintiffs is a recent one linking artificial sweeteners and obesity, diabetes and heart problems. That study allegedly showed no link between artificial sweeteners and significant weight loss.
Other studies cited by the plaintiffs are said to show connections between obesity and consumption of artificially sweetened drinks like Diet Coke.
Coke said the charges are not true, according to an email from a corporate spokeswoman.
“This lawsuit is completely meritless, and we will vigorously defend against it,” wrote Kate Hartman for the company. “Diet Coke is a great-tasting, zero calorie beverage that is and always has been properly labeled and marketed in compliance with all applicable regulations.”