This is How Much Sugar is In Your Favorite Sugary Drinks

cocoa cola sugary drinks

By Dana Leigh Smith

You reach for a can of Coke and start reading the nutrition label: “Thirty-nine grams of sugar. How bad could that be?”

It’s a legitimate question considering sugar measured in grams is nearly impossible to visualize. But now, thanks to food photographer Henry Hargreaves​, you no longer have to ponder how of the sweet stuff is hiding among the fizz.

“After recently hearing a health professional refer to soda as ‘the cigarettes of our generation,’ I decided to do an experiment to show what’s in soft drinks after the water is boiled away—in other words, dehydrating the hydrator,” he explains on his website. “Once boiled, I took each remaining substance and poured it into a lollipop mold. After all, I figure that’s what you’re essentially getting: candy in costume as a soft drink.”

Here, visuals of the sugar in seven popular drinks—in the form of giant lollipops. Plus, exactly how they stack up, size-wise, to the traditional candy on a stick.


Sugar: 39 grams

Vitamin Water

Sugar: 32 grams

Mountain Dew

Sugar: 77 grams


Sugar: 52.5 grams


Sugar: 54 grams


Sugar: 47 grams


Sugar: 28 grams

And as a point of reference...

That sugary drink looks a lot less appetizing now, doesn't it?

Images courtesy of Henry Hargreaves