If you could do one thing right now to improve your health, mood, everything you ever dreamed of having, stop drinking soda. I’m talking about diet soda too.
When discussing sugar, I’m talking about heavy use here, not a once a while dessert. I think we can recover from that sort of treat. A daily soda, nope.
It is difficult when you’re addicted to something like sugar to just give it up. The fizziness, the sweetness, the immediate increase in energy for a short amount of time. Why not?
Let’s think about your future self. Do you care about your future self? If you do, then stop drinking sugary garbage drinks.
As a child, I drank soda all the time. I had no idea. Even in college, I would drink Coke Zero and thought I was doing myself some favors. Nope. Through my education and research on my own, I realized the effects it has on the body and decided to slowly stop drinking it.
If I knew what was happening inside my body, it made it much easier to change. Now I consume only water and I actually crave water, I mean it’s the most simple form of what we need to survive. I also do like Spindrift sparkling water and kombucha to drink. This change happens over time. It will work for you if given time and especially effort.
What happens in the body when consuming sugar drinks?
The body expects a whole food sugar, such as in the form of an apple, as nature intended. That’s not what happens with a sugar drink. Fruits, vegetables, or real food sugars are readily taken up by the insulin to get into cells for more useful energy.
Soda and other sugary drinks spike the insulin levels in the body to prepare for the sugar load. What is insulin? It’s a hormone that helps sugar get into cells. Problem is, this sugar we tend to eat is not favorable. The insulin will not take up all this sugar, and so that leaves it in undesirable places.
Where does this sugar go instead?
The body almost thinks of it as a toxic substance, so instead it gets stored into fat cells, causing weight gain.
The sugar roams around in the blood, causing high blood pressure. Sugar can damage the blood vessels over time. This is linked to all the major diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. Think about your blood supply and how it goes everywhere. Do you want sugar delivered everywhere? I mean, your brain, your skin, your heart? Everything is affected one way or another.
Most people drink sugary drinks for energy or the caffeine. If that’s the case, you may need to look further as to why you need that energy boost. How about examining the rest of the diet? Sleep? Coffee is much better. Don’t like coffee? Try tea. Try anything that’s real.
Stop soda and you’ll see this:
- More energy
- Clearer skin
- More stable mood
- Weight loss
- Less headaches
- Better digestion
- Healthy teeth
- Decreased risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease, obesity etc.
- Less risk of an early death
But what’s wrong with diet soda?
Sugar free alternatives trick the body into thinking it consumed sugar though it didn’t. The body almost prepares for the sugar to come, yet it doesn’t. As a result, the body slows metabolism and turns on fat storage. Foods eaten may not be processed efficiently as the body is confused.
There’s also the issue of preservatives and absolutely nothing good inside the drink. We don’t know what these preservatives do with our body but are likely perceived as toxic substances and stored in the body and block other important processes from happening efficiently.
How can you stop drinking soda?
- Put down that soda.
- Grab a water.
Just kidding. It’s not that easy. The best thing to do is to start small.
Say you drink three sodas in one day.
- Cut down to two sodas a day for a week.
- Replace that one soda with an alternative drink.
- Cut down to one soda a day for a week.
- Replace that with another drink.
- Next week, maybe have half a soda each day.
- The next, maybe no soda or one every two days.
- You’ll get there.
I think the true key to changing a habit or something you like and just can’t give up, is first being willing to try. If someone doesn’t want to give up soda, that’s too bad and they will suffer from it. At this point, you’re not allowed to complain about the effects it’s having on your body.
- Basically any real drink, especially WATER
- Sparkling water – Think Spindrift LaCroix is also an example, but I’m not sure what the “natural flavors” are. It beats soda though. Make sure there’s no other added ingredients.
- Kombucha – fizzy and delicious and beneficial for the gut
- Water with fruit – put some lemon in water
- Tea – not the pre bottled kind with added ingredients
- Homemade juices – example: you can blend watermelon and some lime and make a delicious drink
These are NOT good alternatives:
- Bottled juice – Sugar content is very similar and extracted from whole fruit, effects are similar in body.
- Lemonade – Same thing as the bottle juice.
- Diet soda – no, no, no. We talked about this.
- Sugar free sweeteners – We talked about this too.
For all these, please check ingredients. You may not be doing yourself any favors switching if it still have just as much sugar.
Fresh Tip: Do your best for the sake of your children, your grandchildren, your furry children, whatever gives you joy, and put down that soda. You only have one body, please treat it with respect.