Kicking the Soda Habit
By Leanne Ely, C.N.C.
Let’s start off by talking about some of the benefits to drinking soda… (can you hear the crickets chirping in the background?) The silence is profound. I honestly cannot think of one benefit to your health that drinking a soda gives you. Now let’s talk about the hazards to your health that soda brings to the table. How much time do you have? It is full of empty calories (we’ll save diet soda for another day), fake sweeteners, harmful artificial additives, chemicals, and a whole lot of words I cannot even pronounce.
Why do we want to put this in our bodies? And why are we willing to pay around $10.66 a gallon for this stuff (assuming you pay $1 for a 12oz. can)? We would never spend that on milk, gasoline, or water so why are we willing to pay it for soda? I’ll tell you why. Because we’re addicted. Whether it’s the sugar, the caffeine, the flavor or the fizz you’re hooked. So you know it’s unhealthy, expensive, and addictive and you want to stop. Let me help. Here’s a few tips to get you on the path to soda freedom.
1. You can’t drink what you don’t buy – Believe it or not, it all starts at the checkout stand. When you’re at the grocery store, the game, the restaurant, or the amusement part there are other options for beverages available. Make a plan and put water at the top of the list.
2. Toss it – Most people will feel guilty for throwing away perfectly good soda, but it’s necessary to get the soda out of the house if you are serious about living a healthier lifestyle. Just get rid of it! Honestly, do not even save it for your spouse, and especially not your kids. If it’s not good enough for you then it’s not good enough for those you love.
3. Make the Switch – Soda isn’t the only delicious tasting beverage out there. Try unsweetened iced tea with a lemon wedge or cucumber slice. Orange juice that is freshly squeezed has lots of vitamins and fiber that will fuel your body but it is loaded with too much natural sugar; try mixing it with some mineral water for a soda-like treat! Mix up a tasty combination of berries, oranges, pineapple, and carrots for a super healthy and tasty beverage. The fact is, the best beverage choice is always water. No added sodium, no added salt, no added artificial yuck.
4. Step On The Scale – If you need a little motivation step on the scale. A can of soda has about 150 calories in one single serving. If you drink one can of soda a day that is 4,500 calories in a single month. Just by cutting out soda alone from your diet, you will lose over 1 pound a month especially if you replace the soda consumption with water.
5. Get The Whole Family Involved – Trying to quit a bad habit can be much easier when the family is involved. Talk with your family and let them know you are trying to make a healthy lifestyle change for all of you. Explain to them that soda is unhealthy and you won’t be purchasing it anymore. This won’t just benefit the quality of your life, but theirs as well. By having your entire family give up soda you might just save your children from a life of diabetes and obesity.
6. Get Moving – Studies show people that are more active make better choices in their diet. By replacing your soda addiction with a walking addiction you will become even more healthy.
Just a few minor changes with your daily choices can help your body and your wallet. So go grab a nice tall glass of water. Cheers!?