Kicking the Soda Habit
Sunday, March 31, 2013
It’s been at least six weeks since I last had soda, maybe more. I’ve lost track -- I’m no longer at the point where I need to say “OMG, it's been ____ weeks without soda!” Happily!
Fortunately, I’d cut down on soda about a month or two before I quit. My workplace is located in a soda-lover’s dream. Right near our office is a place where you can get 75 cent fountain sodas (once you buy their cup) and several places that have those things I call “Magical Multiple Choice Soda Machines” in which you can get shots of vanilla or a zillion other flavors in your soda. So, for a while I was really overindulging. Then I cut back, and then 6 weeks or so ago, I stopped entirely.
All in all, it hasn’t been so bad. The first time I had pizza with water, it was a downer. Obviously, pizza tastes a lot better with soda. But then again, I shouldn’t really be having pizza in the first place! And for a while, I was making crystal light/fruit juice/water concoctions to drink at meals, but now I’m fine with just water. Every once in a while, I’ll have one of those lite Fuse drinks. I wish that I liked the taste of tea, but I just don't.
Before I quit, I’d thought that I wasn’t addicted to soda because I wasn’t having all that much, plus, half the time I had caffeine-free. But now I think that I was more addicted than I knew because the idea of soda always sounded great to me. But now I don’t really need it. Sure, a few mornings -- OK, most mornings -- I could use the caffeine. And occasionally, I will crave the taste of soda. But mostly, I don't, which is amazing since for years I referred to Diet Coke as “The Drink of The Gods.”
As for benefits, there are lots. I know that my bones will absorb more calcium now that I’m off of soda. And my teeth will stay whiter. That’s a biggie for me because I’ve been really trying to take more care with my teeth lately. After I was off of soda for a month, I even did a round of tooth-whitening. And I do think that having a huge, yummy soda encouraged me to eat more. Most days I’d have a big fountain soda with my meal. And when the food was gone, if I had soda left, I’d find something else to snack on while I finished my soda. Don’t get me wrong, I can still overeat without soda, but I think I’m doing so a little less. There are probably other health benefits, but a big non-health one is not having to buy those 24 packs of soda at the store. A) They’re really expensive. B) They’re heavy to carry into my place (especially while carrying a lot of other groceries). C) It leads to much less recycling to have to deal with.
So, that’s the good news. The bad news is that quitting soda has been my only healthy accomplishment lately. I’m trying to eat better, but so far, it’s been hit or miss. And exercise has really been nonexistent. Since I developed plantar fasciitis, I’ve been walking a lot less. On many days, it’s too painful to do more than the minimum amount of walking. On other days when it’s not that painful, I am very aware that if I can’t get rid of the inflammation in the bottom of my foot, then the pain will keep reoccurring. So, walking for exercise is out right now. To compensate, I have ordered an exercise bike. I’m hoping that it gets here soon. And I could be doing some of the Wii cardio games. I tried a few times just standing instead of marching in place and I still worked up a bit of sweat doing the arm movements. So, that could work -- I just have to get myself to do it.
At any rate, there is a lot of room for improvement, but being able to report that I have mastered one healthy habit is definitely better than no healthy habits.
Have a great week! - KayBee