Should You Still Drink Sprite and Fanta Produced in Nigeria?


Published: March 23, 2017

RH Weekly News Roundup – 24 March 2017

Soft Drinks Have Always Been a Problem 

In Nigeria, Sprite and Fanta are under the spotlight. It all began when a Nigerian businessman in the UK imported these beverages from home for sale in his UK shops. Customs halted the importation, claiming that the beverages were unfit for human consumption. Last month, a Lagos high court ordered the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) to place written warnings on its Fanta and Sprite bottles. Why? The high concentration of Benzoic Acid and Sunset Yellow additives become poisonous when combined with Vitamin C.

The NBC is appealing the decision, and after some back and forth, it’s been determined that these drinks shouldn’t be taken with medications. But, let’s be honest, no one should be consuming soft drinks terribly often. Of course you’re allowed to treat yourself every now and again, but Fanta, Sprite, and other soft drinks cause tooth decay, lead to obesity, and contribute to the prevalence of diabetes. Your best bet is still water with some fruit juices and milk for variety.


Of Course, It’s Not Always Easy to Get Clean Water

On World Water Day, it emerged that Nigeria is one of 37 countries facing extreme water challenges. According to UNICEF, roughly 1.8 billion people don’t have access to clean water – for drinking, let alone bathing. In Nigeria, one of the biggest challenges to clean water is infrastructure. A mere one in ten residents of Lagos receives water from the state utility.

And yet, the state government appears to have criminalized private extraction of water in the city. That makes it tough on the other 90 percent of the population to avoid the consumption of soft drinks, doesn’t it? While the onus is on the government to develop infrastructure, it’s worth remembering that you should save every drop of running water that you can. There are definitely people that need it.


Speaking of Development and Health Care

It’s hardly a secret that development is needed across Nigeria. From water and sanitation to healthcare, infrastructure is under strain. And, it may become a little more difficult. Of the $444 million in USAID funds provided to Nigeria in 2016, 55.86 percent went towards health and population care. Under Trump, the amount of funding will likely be slashed.

Luckily, UNICEF has continued to pledge support to the Nigerian health care sector – especially towards developments of maternal and child health initiatives. Given the untenable number of child and infant deaths, this can only be a good thing. And, despite the hardships, there are signs that Nigerian maternal health is moving in the right direction.


If You Skip Weight Training… 

Many women turn towards cardio workouts because they’re seen as more feminine ways to exercise or because they love that rush of endorphins. But, you don’t want to avoid strength training, even if that corner of the gym is filled with men. Besides an inability to lose weight effectively, you’re more likely to experience post-workout pain.

Remember, strength training isn’t just about weight lifting. There are plenty of ways to get these exercises into your fitness regime without heading to the testosterone side of the gym. Yoga is one of the best ways to boost your strength and give your muscles an intense workout. You can also do pushups, planks, and walking lunges from the privacy of your own home. It may hurt at first, but your muscles will thank you for it later.


Meningitis Is on the Loose 

The Federal Government warns against a new strain of Meningitis that has come into the country through neighbouring Niger. Already, there have been 16 confirmed deaths in Niger State, and five are dead in Sokoto State from an outbreak of Cerebro Spinal Meningitis.

Meningitis is treatable if it is seen as the medical emergency it is. It usually requires a hospital stay, but the alternative is typically death or extreme disability. Symptoms include a stiff neck, high fever, light sensitivity, headaches, vomiting, and confusion. If you experience and of these, it is important to report to the nearest health care facility without any delay.

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