Water is $\ce{H2O}$ in all it's states: solid(ice), liquid, and gas(water vapor).
In your drink, when you add artificial flavoring and coloring, does it change the chemical composition of the water? What makes the flavor and color change?
Are you still drinking $\ce{H2O}$, with dense amounts of another liquid, or do they blend together?


1 Answer 1


Not really sure what you are after here, but maybe this will help ... artificial flavors and colors are generally present at very low concentrations, dissolved in the water. "Dissolved" means that the individual additive molecules are completely surrounded by water molecules, which are interacting with it to stabilize it in its dissolved form. Since their concentration is low, each such additive-water aggregate is pretty far away from any others, so what you have is not very different from water, in a chemical sense at least. Note also that the water molecules around a given additive molecule are not static .. they are constantly exchanging with the "bulk" pure water solvent around them.

In some cases, an additive may not be very water-soluble ... in such a case a surfactant solubilizer molecule may be added to help the additives dissolve in the water. The surfactant molecules have one end that likes to interact with the insoluble additives (the hydrophobic end), and one end that likes to interact with water (the hydrophilic end). They aggregate themselves into larger spherical structures called micelles, where the hydrophobic parts of the molecules are protected on the inside (along with the additive molecules), and the hydrophilic parts are on the outside, exposed to the water. These micellar aggregates can be large enough to scatter light, and so drinks with these additive-solubilizer combinations will often appear cloudy. An example of this is the citrus flavoring in sodas like Mountain Dew and Squirt ... in those cases, brominated vegetable oil (BVO) is added as a surfactant to dissolve the citrus flavor molecules.

(Aside: BVO is not exactly good for you, and several soft drink manufacturers have said that they will eliminate it from their formulations, which means maybe I can start drinking Fresca again)


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