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Why can't I say “She died from drinking 18 cans of Coca-Cola”? Instead, the correct sentence would be “She died of drinking 18 cans of Coca-Cola”.

Why does that happen?

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  • I have just read that die of refers to a direct cause and die from to an indirect cause of death.
    – anouk
    Commented Oct 16, 2019 at 17:13

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Die is a verb which is followed by certain appropriate prepositions.

Die of diseases and old age and bad habits.
Die from wounds and injuries.
Die in an accident.
Die for a great cause or for the country.

So in for your example sentence, "She died of drinking 18 cans of coco-cola." is correct.

The Merriam-Webster definition of "die" has more examples that might help you.

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  • Actually, Longman's dictionary has a helpful note about prepositions with 'die': "GRAMMAR: Prepositions with die • Someone dies of or from a disease or injury: He died of a heart attack. / He died from a heart attack. Die of is more common than die from. ✗Don’t say: He died because of a heart attack. • Someone dies in an accident: He died in a car crash. ✗Don’t say: He died by a car crash. • Someone dies for a person, place, or idea that they want to protect: These men died for our freedom."
    – ColleenV
    Commented Mar 23, 2021 at 19:25
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Both actually work. It just depends who you are talking to. Different people will find different versions more natural. Either way, everyone will understand the point you are trying to make.

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