The primary chemical compounds in Coca-Cola are sodium cyclamate, acesulfame potassium, and E150D, which is a food coloring. Sodium cyclamate and acesulfame potassium are both sugar substitutes, with sodium cyclamate being used more predominantly because it is significantly sweeter than natural sugar.
The most well-known chemical compound in Coca-Cola is aspartame. It is a genetically modified product that is used as an artificial sweetener. Another major chemical pound in Coca-Cola is 4-methylimidazole (4-MI). It is used to give Coca-Cola its coloring, but has also come under public scrutiny because medical studies have shown it has possible carcinogenic side effects.
Coca-Cola contains citric acid, which is why it can be harmful to teeth if individuals drink too much of it. Orthophosphoric acid is also used as a major chemical compound in Coca-Cola in order to give it a distinct flavor. Sodium benzoate can be found in Coca-Cola, which acts as a preservative that helps keep the soda fresh for a prolonged period of time.
Unknown aromatic additives are also used to make Coca-Cola, but the type of additives that are used is unknown. There are several other ingredients in Coca-Cola that remain unknown because the company keeps the recipe a secret.