How I kicked my diet soda habit
Back in my teens and early 20s, I consumed massive amounts of diet soda. I’d go through can after can without a care in the world.
Diet Dr. Pepper Cherry, even though it made me burp like a maniac, was my very favorite soft drink. To my delight, I had free access to it ALL day long at work. I’d constantly pass the water cooler and head straight to that soda machine.
Cracking open a nice cold soda was the best part of my day.
After drinking approximately a million and one cans of diet soda, I started to wonder what was really in those cans, aside from burp-inducing bubbles. After wondering, I was actually brave enough to look.
What I found was a long list of artificial this and artificial that and words I sure as heck couldn’t pronounce. Where do grocery stores keep the Red 40 anyway? Is it next to the broccoli?
Didn’t think so.
After reading the labels, I confirmed what I already assumed to be true: I’d been washing back my healthy greens with cans of carbonated artificial junk.
This fact was very disturbing to me, and I vowed to break my habit. It wasn’t easy, but eventually, I kicked my soda dependency.
- Rather than quitting cold turkey, I cut myself down to one can a day, which I’d drink at 3 pm. It gave me something to look forward to during the work day. Soon after implementing the 3 pm soda fix, I discovered Hansen’s soda. Behold a non-terrifying ingredient list! Before long, my 3 pm soda break consisted of Hansen’s rather than the other stuff.
- All of the other sodas I used to drink throughout the day were replaced with ice water. Just to make it special, I bought myself a pretty water bottle and carried it with me everywhere (kind of like Paris Hilton and her chihuahua).
- Since plain old water can be…well…plain, I sliced cucumbers, lemons, strawberries, limes, and oranges and added them to my glasses from time to time (not all at once though). Sometimes I’d even throw in some fresh mint. Doing this actually started to feel luxurious. The only thing missing was a spa.
- Coconut water and aloe vera juice came into my life. They are both so hydrating, and even though the taste may take some getting used to for some, I really enjoy the flavors.
- I stopped adding sugar free flavored powders to my water. As far as I’m concerned, they are every bit as scary as soda.
- I told myself that I could have diet soda occasionally. There are rare times when I’ll order a glass of Diet Coke at a restaurant, but I actually prefer water now. I never dreamed I’d see that day!
Even if soda isn’t your vice, these tips can be applied to most any habit that you need to break. All you have to do is cut down slowly, find a replacement, and allow yourself a free pass every now and then. (Unless your habit is eating crayons, in which case, you should just stop.)
Cutting down on my soda consumption has actually given me more energy. It has even helped to keep me more regular. Hey, I’ve already mentioned burping. Might as well toss regularity in there too.
What are your thoughts on soda? Have you stopped drinking it, or do you drink it regularly? I’d love to do a follow-up post with your tips (I’ll cite your blog, if you have one), so feel free to email them to me at email@example.com.
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Have a great day!