Soda Addiction: How To Kick the Habit
Sweet cold liquid caffeine: It's a tough habit to break but it can be done by following this 5-step plan.
First, though, let's examine why soda is so satisfying. The combination of super sweet with caffeine does provide a great pick-me-up but it's short lived and the damage of regular soda consumption isn't worth the momentary burst of energy it provides. The 140 calories and 38g of sugar per 12oz (the size of a soda can) with absolutely no nutritional value don't satisfy the same way 140 calories worth of highly nutritious food does. In other words, it's easy to pack on extra pounds with soda.
5 Step Plan
- Identify WHY you drink soda to begin with
Is it out of habit, thirst, or as a energy booster or stress reliever at a particular time of day or in a specific situation? Once you determine "why", you can determine strategies to overcome your soda-drinking habits.
- Clean your cupboards
Pretty simple but if you don't have soda in your home, office, car, etc it will make it harder to grab one.
- Decide to gradually cut back on soda or go cold turkey
This depends on how much you drink every day. If it's more than 12oz/day, I recommend gradually cutting back rather than going from a lot to nothing too quickly and risking relapse. If you do go cold turkey, consider replacing the caffeine from soda with another source: coffee, tea, or even caffeine supplements with nothing else in them to prevent massive headaches from caffeine withdrawals.
- Replace the soda with something else to drink and/or eat
Drink lots of water and if you use the soda as a energy booster, replace it with a healthy snack.
- Have a plan for when a craving hits
For example, if you stop for gas, don't go into the convenience store if it tempts you to buy a Big Gulp. If you're tempted to order soda at a restaurant, movie theater, or ball game, stick with water, unsweetened tea, or sparkling water. If you do have a soda, order the smallest possible size and don't get refills.