It’s no secret that soda is bad for you but trying to kick a bad habit can be easier said than done– especially if you do it at least once a day. According to the American Beverage Association (ABA) consumption of soft drinks is now over 600 12-ounce servings per person per year, and it is no wonder when you factor in how addictive sugar is. According to a recent study, sugar is as addictive, if not more addictive, than cocaine and other hard drugs.
As for the health risks soda increases the risk of diabetes, heart disease, kidney stones and kidney issues and pancreatic cancer just to name a few. For kids, soda can cause changes in appetite causing them to stop eating healthy foods, it can cause them to lose bone density, and it is a potent brain toxin and endocrine disruptor.
Before you decide to quench your thirst with a fizzy and bubbly drink you might want to try one of these healthier options.
For many soda drinkers, caffeine is one of the reasons they drink their daily can or bottle of pop. If you are looking for caffeine but want to avoid coffee and soda, you can try coffee alternatives like makka powder, herbal teas and smoothies.
As you slowly wean off soda try incorporating unsweetened tea into your daily drink intake as a substitute. The best thing about tea is that it comes in all kinds of flavors just like sodas. Some of my favorite teas include flavored herbal energy teas, mango tea, black tea, green tea and white tea. Another benefit of tea is it protects your skin from sun damage, stabilizes blood sugar levels, and decreases the risk for certain cancers. Now ask yourself: can soda do that?
If you get tired of drinking tea or water give flavored water a try. Add lemons, oranges, cucumbers, berries, fresh mint, berries, or strawberries to a pitcher of water to create your own sugar-free flavors. So often, when we think of soda we think it will be refreshing, but soda can actually dehydrate you. Making a pitcher or a to-go bottle of ice-cold flavored water is more refreshing than soda– especially on a hot day– and is much cheaper and tastier. Although it may take a few weeks for your taste buds to adjust to a far less sugary drink, you will find that your body feels far better when you drink homemade flavored water and tea.
If you tend to get lured in to the soda machine everyday try packing your own drink in a refillable water bottle instead. When you are thirsty and desperate for a drink, you are more likely to make a poor choice so keeping your own drink handy is a huge helper. Or if you like to venture out during lunch breaks try choosing places that offer other options such as tea, juice, or water.
With refreshing replacements, you can wean yourself off of sugary soda for good.
To read more about energy boosting healthy drinks, click here.
For information on keeping your family hydrated, click here.