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Ultimate Deceit -- Diet Coke Funds Heart Health Programs

February is "American Heart Month," and a celebrity-studded game of Capture the Flag at UCLA is raising money to fund heart research at UCLA and UC Davis. The source of the research money at stake in these games is Diet Coke.

This may seem a bit strange, given that a 2007 study linked daily consumption of sodas, including diet sodas, to an increased risk of developing metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is a condition that doubles your risk of developing heart disease. A second study actually found that rats who ate the artificial sweetener saccharin gained more weight than rats who ate sugar.

In related news, Pepsi dropped Superbowl advertising last year, choosing instead to put their money into a monthly online contest for people to submit their ideas and compete for votes to win grants.

According to the New York Times:

"As Pepsi had hoped, competitors have turned to their personal networks on Facebook and Twitter to gain support for their ideas, extending the Pepsi brand ... Nearly 19 percent of the 77 million votes have been cast through Facebook. On Twitter, participants were urged to use the hash tag '#PepsiRefresh,' and they did."

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