WOW! So an alert just popped up on my phone to remind me that today marks the day of my one month anniversary of quitting diet soda! Holy smokes, I never thought I could make it this long!!!
How To Stop Drinking Soda
Let me tell you a little about my past…
Growing up, I don’t remember drinking juice or milk. I always drank Coke or Pepsi. (This goes along with the whole eating fast food twice a day, every day thing). I never saw anything wrong with it because I always saw other kids at school doing the same thing. My mom always had a ginormous cup of diet coke with her at all times. I remember tasting it a few times and making a big “yuck face” because I thought it tasted horrible. I was sticking with my regular sodas loaded up with sugar!
I played competitive soccer year round, so I never saw it adding on extra weight or being in the way of my health at all.
I continued to drink regular soda in my college years. I think it was my sophomore year of college when I lived in a house with 5 other girls. I was the only one who drank regular instead of diet. I decided to give diet coke a try. At first, I hated the taste, but that hate went away soon and I was soon hooked!
My roommates and I would always go to the gas station to get “Polar Pops” as we would call them. They were like 59 cents for a HUUUUUUGEEEEE fountain soda that would jack us up with caffeine to get us through our studying. I would drink diet coke ALL day long. I literally would have one as soon as I woke up, a couple for lunch and a couple for dinner. This lasted for years. I would go to a fast food restaurant and get a value meal with a diet coke. That doesn’t make sense..does it? Nope! That was my way of justifying the meal to myself. I would tell myself at least I was making one healthy decision with this meal and I’d feel a bit better about inhaling that late night burrito. I also would always tell people that I felt like diet sodas made my food taste better. Hah! At this point, there was no way that I could see myself quitting soda – I was addicted.
I continued this trend until one month ago! Even though I’ve been out of college for 6 years (Holy crap, time flies!!! I’m getting old!!), I still continued to think diet coke was okay to drink.
Effects of Soda On The Body
It wasn’t until recently that I have researched more about the affects that diet sodas can have on your body. I have realized that a lot of diet soda’s (which contain the sweetener called aspartame) can cause:
- Kidney damage in those who drink more than 2 a day. The sweeteners in diet sodas may scare kidney tissue over time.
- Weight Gain. This seems weird because it’s a zero calorie drink, right? Well the sweetness of the drink may signal your digestive system to thinking more high calorie foods are coming in. It also may allow you to think you can eat more at a meal because you have a “free pass” from choosing diet. (I was SO guilty of this!)
- Tooth Enamel Damage. The sugar and acid in diet sodas can cause your teeth to lose enamel on your pearly whites!
- Bone Loss. The phosphoric acid in the soda causes calcium in your bloodstream to be excreted more quickly than normal through urine. Your bones then give up some of their calcium in order to keep the bloodstream calcium level constant.
The word aspartame sure sounds a lot like “a part of me” don’t ya think? How ironic!
After reading about all of these side effects, I decided to give it a shot. This was also the point in my life where I was thinking about joining Team Savage and I knew that they would tell me to quit anyway. I also took a good look at how much water I was consuming on a daily basis. There were days when I would never drink any water, except for the ice cubes that were in my diet coke! I knew that a huge factor in a healthy body is drinking about a gallon of water a day. I had a big change to make.
Stop Drinking Soda Today
I went cold turkey on my long time buddy, diet soda. It was HARD. Drinking soda became such more of a habit in my life than I thought. Every time I’d go out to eat, I want a soda with it. Every time I got to work, I wanted a cold one to start the day. When I’d stop at a gas station and go inside, I’d want to get a fountain drink. I never got headaches or super bratty like some people say you get after a couple days. That made me realize that maybe I wasn’t addicted, but more so trying to break a habit.
I would be lying if I said that I don’t still think about having a soda when I go out to eat or when I sit down for dinner at home. I do think about it still. It’s been a habit I’ve had in my life for my entire life, so I’m not surprised it’s still in my head.
How To Stop Drinking Soda – My Tips
The way I quit was to focus more on water intake. I switched my goals to trying to drink at least a gallon of water each day. Some people may say that was a transfer of addictions..but hey I’ll take it. I’ll be addicted to water any day!
I found that when I eliminated diet drinks, I was able to drink a gallon of water a day EASILY. Wohooo!!! Sometimes I’ll sweeten my water with some lemons which makes it a bit more interesting.
I’m not going to say that I’ll never have a diet drink again, because I know I will. I just don’t want it to become a habit again. I’m hoping that the next time I do have a taste of it, I make that original “yuck” face like I did when I first tasted it. I hope that my mind can soon get rid of the habit I have formed in my life so that I can live a healthier lifestyle from here on forward!
Adios aspartame..you are no longer “a parta me”!!
I hope you can find my post on How to stop drinking soda useful! Maybe you can quit slowly or if you’re crazy like me, maybe you can quit cold turkey! Either way, good luck and you’ll be so proud of yourself (and save money) once you quit!
101 in 1001 goals completed:
Have you ever tried to quit drinking diet sodas? What was your experience?
Also read my later post to see how I’m doing one year after quitting soda!