Dr Pepper Ten -- the manliest soft drink of them all?

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Looking for a drink worthy of a man’s man? Don’t cue that Dos Equis commercial just yet -- the maker of Dr Pepper is rolling out Dr Pepper Ten, a 10-calorie soda with an ad campaign that asserts that the soft drink is “not for women.”

A gunmetal-garbed can of the drink (which holds 12 fluid ounces) would contain 3 grams of sugar and 15 calories, compared to a standard Dr Pepper, with 150 calories and 40.5 grams of sugar.

This isn’t the first time food products have blatantly targeted men -- Pocky biscuits, popular in Japan, have a Men’s Pocky edition (in blue packaging) as well.


Other diet soft drinks -- such as Coke Zero and Pepsi Max -- have been marketed toward a male audience as well, but perhaps not as aggressively as Dr Pepper Ten, according to the Associated Press. One ad involves wrestling snakes, shooting lasers and engaging in other such ‘macho’ activities.

“A Facebook page for the drink contains an application that allows it to exclude women from viewing content, which includes games and videos aimed at being ‘manly,’” the story explains. “For instance, there’s a shooting gallery where you shoot things like high heels and lipstick, for example.”

It’s not made clear why appealing to men includes using deadly weapons to destroy symbols associated with women.

That said, the soda marketers might be onto something. A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics found about half of people in the U.S. drink a sugary beverage a day, but that males ages 12 to 19 drank the most -- for an average of about 273 calories a day, according to Los Angeles Times health writer Jeannine Stein.

Keep in mind: Studies have shown that even diet drinks are associated with weight gain. So for men (and women) who really want to cut back the calories, it might be better to cut soda and sugary drinks out of their day.

New York City’s health department tried to get that message across with a series of gruesome ads on the subject, and the Center for Science in the Public Interest launched the “Life’s Sweeter With Fewer Sugary Drinks” campaign this summer in cooperation with several major cities and health associations. The campaign hopes to cut consumption of such sugary drinks to about three cans per person a week by 2020.


Follow me on Twitter @LAT_aminakhan.