The group has been critical of the soft drink industry and last year released a video parodying Coke's famous polar bears becoming plagued with diabetes and other health problems.
Coca-Cola said its ads aren't a reaction to negative public sentiment. Instead, the idea is to raise awareness about its lower-calorie drinks and plans for the coming months, said Stuart Kronauge, general manager of sparkling beverages for Coca-Cola North America.
"There's an important conversation going on about obesity out there, and we want to be a part of the conversation," she said.
In the ad, a narrator notes that obesity "concerns all of us" but that people can make a difference when they "come together." The spot was produced by the ad agencies Brighthouse and Citizen2 and is intended to tout Coca-Cola's corporate responsibility to cable news viewers.
Another ad, which will run later this week during "American Idol" and before the Super Bowl, is much more reminiscent of the catchy, upbeat advertising people have come to expect from Coca-Cola. It features a montage of activities that add up to burning off the "140 happy calories" in a can of Coke: walking a dog, dancing, sharing a laugh with friends and doing a victory dance after bowling a strike.
The 30-second ad, a version of which ran in Brazil last month, is intended to address confusion about the number of calories in soda, said Diana Garza Ciarlante, a spokeswoman for Coca-Cola Co. She said the company's consumer research showed people mistakenly thought there were as many as 900 calories in a can of soda.