Thursday, March 21, 2013

Cold turkey

I talk about my vices in life frequently here on the blog. My need to pile things for one. My magazine hoarding problem. And my desire to change from a night owl to a morning person…which has taken a while but I’m successfully getting there. But that’s a whole other post. :)

And I’ve mentioned my deep, intense love of soda before too. I’ve learned over the past few years that it’s more than love…it had become an almost like an addiction. I don’t say that jokingly either. I was obsessed with the stuff.

Here in Indiana when you want a soda it’s all called Coke (and people know what you mean), but I had a special twist. I luuhuhuuved fountain Coke:

glorious fountain coke

Just look at it. In all it’s tall, dark, bubbly handsomeness.

But I can’t stand Coke out of the can – I mean it seriously makes me gag. OK, gag is a strong word, but let’s just say I don’t like it. (Now diet soda makes me gag. For real.)

I have been a canned Pepsi girl my whole life:

pepsi in the can

So you got that? Fountain Coke, canned Pepsi. No fountain Pepsi, never canned Coke. (And dear Lord, no diet, evah.) Makes no sense, I realize this. But people, they taste totally different!

As long as I can remember I have been a soda drinker. I think I started back in high school (when my lunches consisted of a cold Pepsi and a bag o’ chips) and it hasn’t gotten any better since.

The need for the fountain drink has gotten worse over the years – way worse. Most mornings I would NEED to hop in the car and go grab one to start my day. And of course, I would grab some food to go with it, because I was going through a fast food line – more on that in another post too. ;)

So anyway, it was something I had to have – I’ve realized now the correlation between being in the car and the need for a fountain cup. My friend Traci is addicted to it like me -- this was a pretty funny texting exchange we had on our way to IKEA last fall:

coke

Our love of what we call “the burn” (the bubbles – glorious bubbles) is what bonds us. And other things like we actually like each other and stuff, but the fountain Coke love is a BIG one. ;)

Thing is, I have known my whole adult life that it’s not good for me. The older I got, the more I realized it. I’ve kicked tried kicking the habit before -- I think the longest I went without soda was about a month? And then I would slowly ease back into it again…every time.

I always expected to lose a ton of weight when I stopped drinking it and I think when I didn’t each time it was a mental thing with me – why stop when it’s not doing any good? Well, not having the stuff in me WAS doing me good, of course, but I just couldn’t see it immediately.

So I would try to quit, go back to it. Think about it for a year, quit again, go back. Plan to quit for a few months, get up the urge, quit again. Vicious circle.

I couldn’t get past that 30 day mark – and have you heard it takes around 30 days to break a habit?

Well, I don’t know what the change was this time, but in mid-January I decided to do it again. This time it was spurred on by something a little different. I decided to do a “cleanse” – a friend told me about it and suggested it may be worthwhile. But soda of any form was not allowed.

Now I have to say I’m not a diet girl, a fad girl, and not by any stretch did I ever think I was a cleanse girl. But this one was different – I ate normally, nothing crazy like only tomatoes one day and cucumbers the next or something like that. It was just normal food, but no soda and nothing fried. Just good, basic stuff – which did not include the bubbly goodness. :)

So I started it and stopped drinking soda cold turkey on the first day. Honestly, it was more out of fear than anything. I tried eating a couple fries one day and realized what happened when I cheated, so I wasn’t about to drink a soda. ;) The cleanse ended a week or so later and I decided to just keep on going.

I’m lucky because I never have any withdrawal symptoms – no headaches, shakes, nothing like that. I think my body was so used to caffeine it was immune to it in a way? I mean, I could drink a Pepsi five minutes before bed and go to sleep no problem. I just think the caffeine had lost it’s effect on me over the years. 

Because I feel like I’m addicted to soda – not just the taste or the bubbles, but the act of drinking it (through a straw), the pop of the can, the reaching for the fountain drink every. single. time. I was in the car – I have allowed myself to still order one every so often, just to fulfill that need. And it’s helped tremendously. The first few weeks I did it a LOT. But I would take a sip and wouldn’t you know…it tasted horrible. Just awful.

And you know what? It kind of made me mad. I wanted it to taste good, and it didn’t. Messed up, I know. But I would order one, take a sip, and it would taste horrible. But I swear to you, the act of just getting it made such a HUGE difference this time. I was like I was allowing myself to go through the motions, just not the actual consumption.

So…it’s been 66 days now, and I haven’t had a can of Pepsi or a fountain drink. The first few weeks were hard. I’m not kidding you – I thought about it all the time. And still, all this time later, writing about it and putting those pictures up – it still kind of drives me crazy and I crave it. I still have that desire to sip through that straw and feel the burn. The problem is now, it really burns. Like, in a bad way. ;)

Over the past month it has become easier for me to get in the car and not think about driving through somewhere to get one. I STILL have order one occasionally just to sip it and realize it doesn’t taste good. I think I may have to do that for a very long time. It’s what has gotten me through though.

I’m not a coffee or tea drinker (I so wish I liked tea!) so I’m pretty much water all the time now. I drink orange juice occasionally and I’ll have a little chocolate milk every day, but otherwise it’s all water.

And would you believe it, I’ve survived? ;) I didn’t think it was possible for me to do it, I really didn’t. I still don’t feel like I’m over the hump just yet, but I think about it less and less every day.

(I don’t mean to make light of people with real addictions by the way. I don’t think this is close to something as serious as that. But I know many feel like they’re addicted to all kinds of things in life and soda was mine.)

I am determined that this time my habit will be broken. I doubt I’ll ever go back to drinking it. Overall I have lost weight – but I’m not sure how much of it was the lack of all that sugar or other changes I’ve made. I have no doubt it’s helped, but it was not immediate – I didn’t notice a change in my weight till much later.

Do I feel any different? Better? Not really. I have always felt pretty healthy and had good energy. Again, the caffeine didn’t seem to have much of an effect on me, so my energy is still good.

But I do feel better knowing I’m not drinking it anymore, for all the reasons you hear about. I’m not going to preach anything here, but I know it’s not good for me and I’m so glad it’s not in my body now.

So there you go – I’ve become a morning person (pretty much) and I’ve finally kicked my 20 year soda habit. It’s all exhausting – I think I’ll take a break from changing my habits for awhile. :) Are you a soda lover (or pop? Coke? What do you call it?), do you feel like you’re addicted to it too? Or can you just have one and not need another? Have you kicked the habit like me? What worked for you and what made you decide to do it?

115 comments:

  1. Good for you! I have a horrible soda habit (diet coke and regular pepsi, depending on how I feel) that I need to change.

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  2. I love, love, love fountain coke! But I started weight watchers 2 years ago and eventually gave it up. I drink diet coke occasionally but no more drinks with calories. I have to say that your first picture gave me a craving.

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  3. I have a coffee addiction....but I have to admit it has apretty stong hold on me....I give you a ton of credit because I will never give it up..... never!!!! mwhaaahahaahha!

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  4. I don't know if it's an addiction or not, but I do like a glass of coke, I seem to sip on one for a while each day. I think that is a pretty bad habit. Good for you for making the change. Hugs, marty

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  5. Good for you girl!! I was this way with coffee for a long time until I came down with stomach problems that forced me to change my habits. I still miss it, the action of holding a hot, aromatic mug of steamy goodness, especially on Saturday mornings when I can just enjoy it. I totally understand. But now that my stomach is slowly healing, it just tastes acidic. Oh coffee... how I miss you! But good for you, kicking it on your own. Keep it up!

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  6. Good for you! I don't have a soda addiction, I usually opt for the "juice" or lemonade when eating out (which is just as bad calorie wise), but hubby has a terrible soda/coffee/caffeine addiction. He has tried to wean himself off and ends up with "flu" like symptoms and headaches every time and resorts back to his addictions. It is truly no small feat that you conquered this addiction.

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  7. I grew up with Pepsi. Mom is a Pepsi drinker, no ifs, ands, or buts. We bought it in 8 returnable bottles. I remember hauling them into the grocery store and plopping them in a bin and she'd get the deposit back and then we'd do our shopping.

    These days, I have the occasional Pepsi Throwback (out of a can, but poured into a big plastic tumbler filled to the top with ice; another Mom thing: don't give me a glass of pop with two ice cubes floating around sadly) and it's a nice bit of nostalgia. And it's made with cane sugar, not high-fructose corn syrup. It's still a jolt of sugar and I'm sure my pancreas would prefer that I abstain, but as a once-in-a-while treat, it's good.

    Good for you for giving up the habit. That's difficult.

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  8. Congrats on quitting, I know how hard that is. I am a coke addict for sure. I have been drinking coke or some form of cola since I was a young kid. ( And no doubt my teeth are paying for it now, ugh!) I so wish I could stop. The longest I have gone without one is like a day, maybe.

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  9. Good for you! I've been off soda for two years. I still miss the idea of it, but I've replaced it w/ unsweetened tea. Funny how reading your description-- the pop of the can, etc, brings it all back.

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  10. Believe it or not, I think I was addicted to ice cream. One of the worst things to be addicted to since its so flipping fattening! (But I never gained any weight...or so I thought!) So I decided to give it up for Lent. It was actually pretty easy the first week but it was the 2nd week that it really started to "hurt". I used it as a comfort food while I watched tv at night after my 2 children went to sleep. It was "my" time & that's what I would do for a good 30 minutes. So its been over a month now & I haven't had any & it honestly doesn't bother me anymore. And wouldn't you know, I have lost 10 lbs! Geeez..How did that happen?! :-) I guess it was packing on some pounds but I refused to believe it. Now I can see it in my clothes & who knew it was all because of some little ice cream :)

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  11. I loooove diet Coke. And fountain soda is the best, as you said. But alas I've also stopped buying it for the house (in cans, can't stand the bottles) and I still get it when we go out to eat but that isn't super frequent. I totally get you on this. Soda is my main vice. And sweets. ;) I don't drink coffee, don't smoke and am not a big drinker. But I know soda is sooo bad for your body. The chemicals and acid on your stomach, teeth, etc.

    Good for you! That is a huge thing. Keep it up! Also, have you tried sparkling water?? The bubbles are so refreshing!!

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  12. Congrats!

    I finally took the plunge and challenged myself to stay away from drinks about a month ago. Like you said, for these first few weeks, its all you can think about. I had been watching documentaries like Forks over Knives and Vegucated on Netflix which really gave me more insight on how eating and drinking processed foods become like a drug. We are addicted to that sugar and it is doing harmful things to our bodies. I was drinking at least 3-4 sodas a day. Now I may drink a small glass of Snapple (23 grams in a liter) to substitute and mostly water or unsweet tea. I want my taste buds to be heightened and the only way to do that is start over and eliminate the bad things that I've been eating all my life.

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  13. I am so proud of you. Kicking the soda addiction is hard. I am over 6 months in myself. My biggest helper is drinking McAllister's Tea. I buy it by the gallon & take it home. They have Sweet Tea, Regular, and Half & Half. You should give it a try. It could blow your mind. Also, you should go to McD's and get a big cup of Ice Water. Drink it with the straw & keep refilling it all day. The straw helps you drink more & because it is the same kind of cup as soda, it is kind of soothing. Keep up the good work - YOU CAN DO IT!!!!!

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  14. I kicked the habit! In March 2011 I got pregnant, and quit cold turkey. (I only drank diet and I knew it would not be okay for the little one growing inside me) At first it was very hard, but it got easier as my pregnancy went on. I told my husband that the moment our baby came out I wanted a Sonic Route 44 Diet Coke! :) But amazingly enough, when the time came, I didn't really want it. Then I started breastfeeding (for 11 months) after she got here, so of course I couldn't drink diet then either. And before I knew it, it had been over 2 years since I quit them and I dont miss it at all! you go girl!

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  15. You should try seltzer - I have a soda stream which is a bit of an investment at first, but pays for itself over time. You can buy big cups, pour the seltzer over ice, and drink it through a straw!

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    1. I agree. I love soda water, and making it myself definitely saves money over time, since it is so expensive to buy. Soda stream was a good investment. It gives my the feeling of drinking a soda pop, with out all the bad chemicals, etc. I think it is the carbonation that I am addicted too really.

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  16. I'd like to know what cleanse you went on. I keep quitting soda and always keep headaches and feel so sick. I eat mostly organic fresh produce, but soda has been hard for me. Congratulations on your success!!

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  17. I'm going through this exact same thing right now. I was telling myself it was ok to go get a coke this morning, but now after reading this I've changed my mind. Thanks! I'd love to know what you have done to become more of a morning person. I'm working on that too. Thanks!

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  18. I am definitely a sodaholic. I have to have my McDees diet coke or bottled diet Pepsi, but those are the only two I touch. I start the day with soda and end the day with soda. I do drink water but not much. I know that is so unhealthy. It's a horrible habit. I did quit one time for about a year. Only had one soda a week in that time. I felt better but then got sucked back into the habit. I'll say it was peer pressure as my husband is a soda fiend too. More than likely it was just because I love soda. I know it would be much healthier to just quit but like you said it is soooooo hard. Maybe you could post about your "cleanse" and what it entails. You may have already posted about it and I just didn't catch the post but either way I would like to know more about it. PS. Yeah for you on your soda free success.

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  19. Congrats to you! What a feat! I've never been a pop girl (can't stand the burn, as it turns out) but I know so many who are! I'd also love to hear more about the cleanse you did. I keep hearing about these crazy ones (only liquids, etc.) that I'd love to hear a real food variety!

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  20. At 24 years old, I found out I was a Diabetic. I was forced to give up my regular soda and just about everything else. I had always thought that I would never drink diet. It's funny how you start singing a different song when you are not given many options. Diet coke was so sweet to me and I avoided it. Then Coke Zero came along and I have officially become addicted. I know diet soda isn't good for you but as a diabetic, beverages without any chemicals is almost impossible. I loved orange juice and apple juice but cannot drink the regular stuff because of how much sugar is in it. Coke Zero is like my dark chocolate or birthday cake. I hope I never have to give it up.

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  21. Well, of course us Atlanta folks LOVE Coke and would advise you to keep drinking it.. ha!!! But I have tried to "cut back" on my consumption here lately, too. It's hard!!

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  22. From one fountain drink coke addict to another...WELL DONE! I can easily relate to everything you wrote. Excellent words friend. :)

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  23. This is funny timing. One and half weeks ago (March 10th to be exact) I had my last drink (soda.. we call it "drink" in NC). I have sworn it off! I had to have either a fountain diet coke/pepsi or a bottled Diet Mt. Dew. I have been wanting to do it for a long time now, and I finally put my foot down! I don't think I could have a sip here and there like you are doing, though. I would slurp the whole thing down, no doubt!
    Keep up the good work, and I will too! :)

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  24. I completely understand everything you just said! The fountain coke but no fountain pepsi and the opposite for the cans. I must have the same taste buds. I am addicted to large cokes from McDonald's and it has to be in a styrofoam cup or it ruins my whole day. There is something about holding that cup and that burn. I struggle every morning when taking my kids to school and driving by McDonald's. I need to quit so bad and I will literally pull in and talk myself out of it leave and turn around and go right back and take the plunge. That is how bad my addiction is, I try to fight it off all the time. I completely relate and thank you for posting this, I feel like there is hope to stop this madness:)

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  25. I totally get the fountain pop thing. I will only drink pop from the fountain - hate ALL pop from a can and prefer diet over regular. That being said, I dont' NEED to drink pop... in fact for years, I refused to drink any. Then I had kids and well -- you know -- the caffeine is needed sometimes.I do however NEED to have just one cup of coffee early afternoon every single day. If I don't, I get a headache. This is an unfortunate problem, and I know I should get over the addiction, but it just tastes so good. And coffee isn't bad for you! (The addiction to it is). Sigh...

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  26. YES! My name is Andrea and I am addicted to Mountain Dew! It's my coffee in the morning and my late afternoon pick me up! I know it's bad with a capital B. I crave the sugar so bad and the taste. Great advice about your story and I just need to do the same thing. I just bought a 36 can case at Cosco yesterday...ugh!

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  27. Good for You! Your bones and teeth are thanking you (: I am in love with coffee, but soda, not so much. I order one occasionally, but I would just as soon order water with a meal. And I could nevah, evah drink a sugary soda - it HAS to be diet. Coke Zero is my soda of choice...

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  28. In Louisiana we call it Coke. My drink of choice is Dr. Pepper. I can drink Coke or Sprite but I don't. I was addicted. Multiple DP's a day. Now, I might drink one every 2 weeks but they still taste amazing to me! HA! I MUST have mine over ice. I can pour it out of a can over ice & it's fine but I cannot drink out of a can or bottle. Fountain is the best!

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  29. I had a diet crack from Mac Donald's every morning for as long as I can remember. Gave it up about 1 month ago. I had my gall bladder out last week and figured at 42 I need to start making some changes. I don't feel any different either and I also don't think caffeine had any effect on me. I could have killed for one this morning but I didn't. Constant battle!!!

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  30. I love fountain Pepsi! Actually, I'm addicted to a local pizza place. Fountain Pepsi and a pizza. So good! However, they changed locations and now they have Coke products. I hate Coke products! The pizza is not the same without the Pepsi! I'm so mad about it. We went there 2 weeks ago and I haven't been back since. I miss my Pepsi. You know it's an addiction when you are considering ordering a Pepsi somewhere else to bring with you to the pizza place. LOL!

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  31. 2 years ago my girls turned 7 and 4. Neither had had "coke" (I call it all Coke too), but they were starting to ask for it at parties and such. So, I told them if they could go until their next birthday without any I would pay them $50. Then I felt a little guilty if I was still drinking it, (my husband does NOT feel guilty :) so I went along with it. There are just certain meals, like tacos, where I really want that taste. We all made it through the year. On the second year I decided I could take a sip of my husbands now and then - but it's GROSS! I WANT it to taste good, so every once in a while I try again - but it's just terrible - and that's a good thing :) As for the $50, it's worth it to me if they don't start a bad habit so I'll go along with it as long as they do.

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  32. I have been working on kicking my habit of diet coke.. so obsessed! Especially when I eat mexican food.. idk why but I absolutely have to have a diet coke with my chips and salsa..ugh!

    Kayla
    www.lovelucygirl.com

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  33. I LOVE fountain cokes and only fountain cokes, no can anything and no pepsi. Yuck! I used to only drink water for years then last summer I got a coke while out for the first time in forever and I was hooked. I've gained almost 10 pounds since then. I've been trying to quit but it is so difficult because like you, I think about it all day long. So when I go one day without getting one, I commend myself. It's the little things.
    A few years back I was a sweet tea drinker and I quit cold turkey and dropped 8 pounds in about 2 months so I know I would loose these pesky 10 if I could just quit.

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  34. I recently quit too. About the same time you did. I was drinking diet though, and I believe it's much worse for you than regular soda. I feel much better, not bloated and I haven't had a migraine since I quit drinking it! (I used to get one at least once a week).
    Thanks for posting this! I could relate to all of it. :)
    5280runningmommy.blogspot.com

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  35. Congratulations!!! Kudos to you for kicking off this habit. And lucky for you, the soda tasted differently afterwards! Honestly though, I could not do as you do dear, I still indulge in a can of coke about 1-2x a month or so. I wasn't addicted to it to begin with, but sometimes, certain foods just make me wanna gulp up soda and it makes me feel good! I know a can is equivalent to eating 15 full teaspoons of sugar (yup, that's what I tell all my patients), but I've learned that deprivation is far worse than one or 2 moments of pleasure, and that's what drinking soda is to me. So yes, I and my kids occassionally indulge in this bad habit, but heck, I think it's all worth it. :-)CHEERS!

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  36. I quit drinking all "Cokes" three and half years ago and have never looked back or craved it since. I promise you can do it too. Just remember this gross fact ... you can clean your toilet with a can of Coke. Ugh. Try a squeeze of lemon or lime in your water, also red and orange Gatorade is pretty tasty. We have also starting 'juicing' and really love it!

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  37. You all it Coke in Indiana?? I've never heard a fellow Hoosier call it Coke before, just always pop! Are you in Southern Indiana? I'm from Northern Indiana, and have always called it Pop. When I used to work in NY I would get the strangest looks since they all say soda, and now I'm living in Kentucky and they all call it Coke. I just can't win!

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  38. I hated soda growing up, but got hooked on a Mt. Dew in college purely for the "must stay awake" aspect of it. Once I graduated and started working full time, I realized I was tired ALL the time without, so I started to cut back. Crystal Light with caffeine helped tremendously...once I had adjusted to that, I cut down to mostly water and an occasional regular Crystal Light. I still have Crystal Light with caffeine from time to time when I need it, but for the most part, I've broken free! Yay!

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  39. Good for you!! I don't like soda...really never have...but I totally get the craving for the "routine" of it. I have the same thing with my cup of coffee. I never really liked coffee either until I had kids (twins, sleeping..or not...makes a girl find a vice...know what I mean?!?!) Anywho, I got in this routine when they were little...I would drop them off and go to Starbucks. I kept that rountine up until about 2 years ago. I finally asked myself..."the heck are you leaving the house everyday to go and buy a coffee??" I think I was addicted to the routine of it...the fun cup with the stylish cardboard warmer....the comfy chairs...the smell of the roast...all of it. So I went to bed bath and beyond...and bought a similar style cup (washable), a keurig, a frother...all of it. That was about 3 years ago and I haven't really gone back since (unless we are traveling of course). I was thinking when I wrote this...they have those same tumbler style cups with a lid and straw...you may like it ;) I only drink one coffee a day...then it is water for me the rest of the day. When I want something with a little flavor...I love those ICE sparkling waters....very good! Good for you for kicking it girl!

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  40. I found this blog looking for crafty ideas and this is the first post to pop up and I have to say - it struck a chord! I am seriously addicted to the same exact thing - fountain coke. I don't mind it from a bottle,I dislike it from a can, but I, too, will go out of my way to get a coke, I can't even go to the store without having to swing by and getting that coke to drink on the way home. I can't even say where or why this addiction came about - I don't smoke cigarettes, I don't drink alcohol, I don't drink coffee.....but this coke,I can't live without it. I am just as bad with Mt. Dew, not from a fountain (I do like it, but I LOVE Mt.Dew from a bottle or a COLD can, can't stand the stuff warm).I will literally get massive headaches if I do not drink the right amount of caffeine throughout the day.I am determined to get myself on a raw foods diet this summer once work lets out for summer and I can focus on this without the stress of work breaking me down. Anyway,it'sreally nice to see that I a not the only one and that I am not crazy at all! (Oh! And I'm from NY and we call it "pop")

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  41. I am so with you!! Especially the fountain Coke from the drive through in your picture. For some reason it just tastes better than other restaurants.

    I recently watched the a movie called "Hungry for Change" and it helped me change my whole lifestyle. I thought I was going to die the first day without Coke. I had such a bad headache and felt sick. I went to bed at 6pm!

    Since then, I have been making fresh juice each morning and have had 1 Coke in the last month. I felt the same way when I drank it. It was so sweet, I swear I could feel my teeth rotting in place. It definitely is an addiction, very tough to crack. However, I feel so much better with my juice. I am more awake and focused through the day. Also, I used to get cravings around 3pm each day, and that is long gone.

    Congratulations on being an overcomer!

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  42. I'm a diet pepsi fiend! I will drink 1-2 cans of dt. pepsi throughout the day. And I'll be honest with everyone -

    I.don't.plan.on.giving.it.up!

    It has more to do with rebellion than anything - you see at the ripe age of 33 I was diagnosed with celiac disease. No more wheat, rye, or barley. No doughnuts. No more whole wheat bread. No more whole wheat pasta. No more anything. I've adjusted - along with my 10 year old son who was diagnosed 6 months later. But overall...I'm tired of not being able to have things...so my pepsi is here to stay!!!

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  43. Congrats! I just read where someone said you can clean your toilet with Coke, I read once that you can clean your car engine with Coke!
    Seriously, I was addicted to coffee when I was younger. It started when I was 22 & working in an office where they kept the A/C at 55 degrees because the owner was going thru menopause. I drank coffee all day just to keep warm! Finally, at 40 I realized that I didn't need any "help" being uptight with a husband & 2 teens at home, so I gave up the coffee cold turkey. It worked. Now I only drink coffee once in a while & usually on the weekends.

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  44. I had that exact same "addiction". It was all about the fountain soda...drinking through a straw! I switched to unsweetened iced tea (add some honey), and put it in a fountain cup with a straw. Totally helped!

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  45. I have never been totally addicted to it like that but I definitely liked it. We have been making changes around here to eating unprocessed foods so it was very difficult explaining to my kids why I would choose to put it in my body when I know how bad it is. They have never had it so it wasn't an issue for them thankfully. Eventually I promised them I wouldn't have it anymore and haven't. For times when I have a serious craving I buy the fruit juice and sparkling water versions (no added sugar). The rest of the time I keep a large glass in the fridge with slices of lemon in it and drink that all day. Congrats on your progress!! You should really be patting yourself on the back because those drinks (like most processed foods) are designed to be addictive.

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  46. OH wow, I thought I was the only one that liked fountain Coke and canned Pepsi. I had a serious habit. Now I only drink it once a week until I can kick it completely

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  47. I like a soda with pizza, can't seem to be able to drink anything else with pizza, other than a soda -- they just fit together in my mind. So I am not a big soda drinker (don't have pizza a lot), but I have an addiction to sweets. I have to have a sweet in the morning, like a muffin, coffee cake, even a brownie. Then a sweet after lunch, cookie, candy. It gets better, a sweet after supper. I would love to control my urges to do this. It is getting harder to lose weight eating like that!

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  48. I read this as I drink my Pepsi at my desk. I want to quit but it's just so good. Your blog has inspired me to try and quit (after I drink all the soda that's in my house) lol

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  49. Oh, you just made me so thirsty. Good job, Sarah!! I am just like a previous commenter, usually the only time I have soda is when we have pizza. They just go together :)

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  50. We are soul sisters, I believe. I too have an addiction to soda. I can totally relate to the bubbly burn that I desire everyday. And I too expect to lose 10 pounds when I stop drinking it, to only be disappointed each time. I also have my quirks on how I drink my soda. Pepsi in a glass with ice, not plastic cup, but it must be glass and with ice. No straw. However, coke can only be fountain form with a straw. No plastic bottles of any sort, and can only do Mountain Dew from the can that has sat in the freezer for 10 minutes, at least. So I completely understand. I am slowly cutting back myself, and have my water with a straw next to me all day to encourage the water. Good luck with breaking the habit. I am rooting for you!!

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  51. Sarah-good for you! My addiction is sweets, so I know it's hard to stop consuming something you love! I think it takes great strength and a realization that your spirit is stronger than your body or your "habit" to really get rid of it. I'm not sweet-free (I do want to enjoy life after all!), but I did go off sugar for a while just to prove to myself that I could do it. It's really liberating! Keep it up! If you like the bubbly-ness, you could always try Perrier water with lime or a dash of fruit juice. Just a thought. Wow, this is a long comment. I'm done. But thanks for sharing with the us!

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  52. We call it pop here in Minnesota. I have never liked pop because of the extreme carbonation. The cans and bottles are the worst. I do not like "the burn", but will drink half-flat or flat pop :)I have always been so glad that I do not like it because I know so many people who can't live without it. However, I do occasionally (2-3 times a year) crave a fountain coke. There is definitely a difference, so I understand what you mean! It is the best with a straw and crunchy ice. I don't know why I crave it every once in awhile when I normal wouldn't pick it as a drink. I also love a good fountain vanilla coke, but only made "in house" with the vanilla syrup. Yum! Normally I am an iced tea drinker, but only need it when we are at a restaurant.
    Good for you for giving it up. My mom cut back on diet coke and had some serious physical withdrawal symptoms - horrible headaches, shakes, etc.

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  53. I'm canned Pepsi all the way. I don't like fountain drinks because I don't like ice in my drinks, I just like them cold out of the fridge in a glass. Never diet (gross), and I call it soda. I don't think I'm addicted to it because I can go without it and not have any side effects, but it's definitely a habit. I drink water all day at work, but when I get home all I want with dinner is Pepsi. I know it's not good for me, but it just tastes so dang good and I have no desire to stop. I eat pretty well in general and I don't drink coffee, tea, or alcohol...so I figure if Pepsi is my one thing it's not that bad. Right?

    I do think it's great that you made the decision to stop and stuck with it though. Good job!

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  54. Great Post! I am in the process of trying to lose a whopping 265 lbs. I have tried and failed SO MANY TIMES...but this time it feels different - I'm already 30 lbs. closer to my goal! In January I too had to part ways with ALL soda. I realized it was "trigger food" for me and caused binge eating eating (I'm not blaming the soda - this was just how soda affected me. On January 1st I gave it up. I did suffer withdrawals, but I was so glad once I hit the end of January - which is when I added in calorie control and started shedding weight. Today, I am all water all the time - I don't drink milk or juice, and lemonades hurt my throat. I have learned to LOVE drinking water. ANYWAY, congrats on a huge accomplishment!!! Addiction is addiction and kicking it is always better for us!

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  55. Oh that liquid gold..........ah, I love it. I quit for over a year once. I had to replace it with lemonade. I don't drink coffee and am allergic to tea, can you believe it??? Who's allergic to tea??? Well I am. At first I bought the lemonade in cans just for the ability to pop the top and carry that can around, ah the life. I just couldn't replace the burn with water, it just doesn't do it for me. I wish it did.

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  56. I kicked soda over three years ago...when I have tasted it recently...I spit it out. It was like drinking straight corn syrup...

    The phosphoric acid in soda alone, Sarah, eats at our stomach linings over time. :) So glad you kicked it!

    I've replaced it with Kombucha- which is a fermented Japanese tea that is loaded with probiotics, b vitamins, etc...but it still has that fizz you would know and love. It's pricey here in Chicago {upwards of $4 a bottle}...but it's a great detoxer and I love the taste.

    It's really low in sugar {2g-4g on most flavors} and is a cross between soda and beer, but with mass health benefits. If you are near a health food store or Whole Paycheck...give it a whirl.

    My best,
    Nicolette

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  57. Great Blog! I started out with bottled Pepsi WAY back, then Diet Pepsi but switched to Diet Coke. So now I don't like the taste of any Pepsi of any kind and prefer canned or bottled Diet Coke. . .yes, I have been drinking sodas for a long time! Have no plans on stopping either. I have a routine: Earl Grey tea in the morning, sodas until after five when I have a glass of Chardonnay.

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  58. I've been off soda for about 2 months now (although I permit myself Sprite when at a resturant as I hate tea, coffee, and nothing but blank water all day).

    The fun bit about quiting was my brain chemistry sorting itself out -- caffeine addiction actually causes the brain to stop producing certain chemicals necessary to get your synapses firing properly as the caffeine causes the same effect. So once you're hooked, your brain is literally running at half-speed when you've had no caffeine!

    Good times.

    I keep a Brita water bottle at my desk at work (it has a filter and you can squeeze the bottle!) and I've started drinking Sobe Lifewater for lunch. I have found that the quality of sleep I get has really improved.

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  59. I'm so proud of you, really!
    My body has not had a soda, pop
    or anything bubblie in cans
    or the fountain in years.. litterally
    25 or so. It all started when I
    read what it could do to your system.
    Loaded with nothing more than sugar
    and addiction. My children did not have
    soda in our house all those years.
    So Proud of you!
    Sandy

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  60. I am addited to SUGAR! I wish I could give it up cold turkey, but there are sooooo many delicious swet treats. Maybe one day... :)

    http://happinessiscreating.com/

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  61. I know your pain. I am addicted to diet Pepsi. I am diabetic so I have never drank the regular. I have been trying to quit since the first of the year. I recently found Zevia and it has really helped me when I get those bad cravings. Thanks for posting about this as I know I'm not alone.

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  62. I refuse to give up soda! I love it too much! For years it was regular Pepsi, and I would have a glass in my hand all day long. I drink it from 2 liter bottles, BTW. Then in my 30's I forced myself to switch to diet Pepsi, and I also forced myself to cut down. I allow myself one during work, and one again in the evening, and I also drink at least 2 bottles of water per day too. I also drink a cup or 2 or hot tea in the mornings. I think as long as I keep it to less than 2 glasses per day I am OK.

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  63. Oh, and I forgot to say, you are right, it is that bubbly burn that I love! There is noting else like it.

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  64. I broke a diet coke addiction 7 years ago. My daughter the chiropracter told me that when you take a foreign substance like that innto your body that your immune system starts attacking it and then if there are germs that they should be attacking they are already occupied. so, keep that in mind because eventually you will order one and it will taste good again.

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  65. I tried this myself a few weeks ago and then my kids got sick. In a moment of weakness I went back to the black nectar. I am trying to cut down and then cut it out. Unlike you, I get the killer headaches. BOO. This is what I needed to read, when I needed to read it.

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  66. Congrats! At least you try and try again. I completely understand the soda addiction. I love it too. I do drink Soda with no sodium or cafffine so I guess I justify that it's better for me. lol, not really. Anyway congrats. Susan@ throughmyporchwindow.blogspot.com

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  67. Totally relate to this! Well, almost, except for me it's canned coke, not plastic, and not Pepsi. I love the can, the click of the tab, the first sip. I've tried to stop too (and have had days I haven't bought one) and am no longer keeping it in the house. Sometimes I stop just to buy one and love the feel of the cold can....and then realize it doesn't taste as good as I wanted it to (although most of the time it does!). But reading your post makes me realize how addicted I am to the act of drinking it and not just the Coke itself!
    OK....Going to try to make it two days. You inspired me!

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  68. OMG - I love, love, love Diet Coke. Not Diet Pepsi but will buy it when it's on sale. I have been trying to kick the habit too. That and smoking. So far, I'm still doing both but I know I can do it and I will definitely be going cold turkey too.

    Jeanine

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  69. My husband and I were both huge Pepsi drinkers in high school and college. In high school my breakfast was one beautiful blue can and a pack of chocolate-covered mini donuts from the vending machine. I could get away with it as I was an avid athlete. When we both took desk jobs after college we watched our weight creep up so we switched to Diet Pepsi. My mornings are just not right without a Diet Pepsi to this day. I was able to kick the habit until the very end of my first pregnancy but my doctor actually told me to keep drinking one a day during my second because I was getting severe headaches. And both my husband and I know what you mean about drinking one 5 minutes before bed and being able to sleep. There have been a few rare nights that if we don't have one we can't sleep! But we have no desire to quit this addiction, at least for now. I need the caffeine these days just to survive a 5 month old and 2 year old.

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  70. Eh. We all need vices, right? I mean, congrats! :) I keep trying to quit. I'm a pharmacist and the studies I read don't prove anything...yet. I'm sure there were studies that said cigarettes weren't harmful in the beginning though too. I have stopped and started again many times also. I've found that I actually eat worse when I don't drink pop. Eh.

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  71. That's funny - I'm from Atlanta, where Coke was invented, so of course all sodas are "coke" as in "Can I have a coke?" "What kind, Co-cola (Coke), Sprite, Pepsi, root beer?". But when we visit my mom's family in Ft Wayne IN it's always been "pop" to them. Guess the southern has spread :)

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  72. I have a soda addiction too (Coke to be specific) but am determined to quit before my twins are old enough to figure out what I'm drinking and ask for it themselves. Good for you!!

    Susan
    simplymodernhome.com

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  73. That's awesome! Great job! :) I completely understand the addiction. My weird twist is that my tastes are seasonal. In winter I need Coke. In summer I want Mountain Dew. But, I think I've broken the habit too. One thing that has helped is Pellegrino or Perrier. It's still fizzy but in a way that is actually good for me.

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  74. It's like you wrote this specifically for me! I quit too-around the same time as you and I miss it. The feel of it in my hand, the bubbles, the first few sips. But it doesn't taste good anymore and so I get horribly confused when I allow myself one. It might not be the same as being addicted to smoking, alcohol or drugs, but it's an addiction all the same. I think this time I'll make it-and that makes me sad. Oddly.

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  75. You and I are so much alike it is scary! I am addicted to Diet Pepsi but did the Advocare 10 day cleanse and kicked the habit without and of the headaches I feared! Several weeks later thought I would have just one can of diet pepsi-boy was I disappointed! It tasted just terrible!

    Lorie

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  76. First of all - WELCOME SOUTHERN SISTA! I had no idea people in your neck of the woods referred to all "Sodas" as "Cokes" - welcome to the South! I too, had an addiction much like yours and kicked it when it was causing lumps in my breasts! TRUE! Anyway, I now have maybe one a week, and even then, can't finish the entire thing because it's so sweet. I no longer crave it.

    One thing that has helped is a Soda Stream that makes bubbly club soda for me out of plain tap water. It gives me that burning, bubbling fizz that I love so much!
    Good for you, and happy healthy years ahead for us all!

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  77. I love me some PEPSI, I am limiting myself. But will never completely give it up!!!

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  78. hahah That was funny! Yes I know the taste changes from the fountain to the can but I don't mind it a bit! I love coke, regular Coke whichever way I can find it! I've even drank it all flat! My kids just said "eeeek don't drink that"! :D

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  79. Good for you!! I've been a Diet Coke drinker since high school. Like others, Mom got me started. I did manage to cut it out thru two pregnancies.

    In recent years I can only drink canned or bottled D.C. Lately - maybe since fountain dispensers started having all flavors come out of the same spout - I can't tolerate the mixed up fountain taste. Also, I think I saw the gunk in a dirty fountain or ice machine on Kitchen Nightmares once. Blech!!

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  80. I wouldn't say that I have ever been a true addict, but I do LOVE Diet Dr. Pepper and Diet Coke...and I really love it in the form of a fountain drink. Whether regular or diet, soda/pop/coke is just plain not good for our bodies. I would go periods of time without drinking any of it, but when I became a stay at home mom last year, Diet Dr. Pepper was like a special treat for me, along with sugary Starbucks drinks. I am proud to say that I have only had Starbucks about 3 times since Thanksgiving, and have only had soda once or twice in the past couple of months. It really can make a difference. One thing my husband and I love are packets of True Lemon and True Lime in our water. You can find the boxes in the grocery store (ours are in the baking aisle at Kroger). It is made from the peels of lemons, limes, oranges, etc. and it is sugar free, no artificial sweeteners, and 100% natural. I love water with a bunch of ice, a couple of packets of true lemon and a straw. Tastes like lemonade. I also find that having a fun new glass or water bottle has helped me drink more water. Good luck! Sounds like you are doing a great job. Oh, and someone suggested tea from McAllister's deli - their sweetened tea is loaded with sugar, so I wouldn't suggest that :)

    P.S. - I live in Richmond, VA now, but I grew up in Ft. Wayne and everyone there calls it pop, not coke. Ha!

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  81. I am giving up soda and McDonald's for lent this year and the first week was HARD but it's getting better. I have been craving it lately and your photos didn't help - but they did get me to read your post - I hope I can maintain the changes after Easter. Congrats to you for doing it.

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  82. This cracks me up - my husband thinks I'm weird because I only drink coke out of a can- I can't stand pepsi out of a can, but I LOVE Pepsi out of the fountain! Someone out there understands!

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  83. Oh, you and Traci are my sisters from other mothers! I am truly addicted to fountain sodas - Sonic Cokes, McDonald Cokes. GOOD GRIEF!

    I am trying to drink less and less, but it is so stinkin hard. That is the FIRST thing I want in the morning. If I could install a fountain drink machine in my bedroom I probably wood. IT's that bad.

    Congrats to you on cutting back/out!

    Interesting to hear how different parts of the country refer to the drink goodness - soda, pop etc.

    Here in Tennessee, we call it COKE! Oh, and NO PEPSI FOR ME! :)

    Marilyn C.

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  84. I gave up soda for 9 months a couple years ago! And then I started drinking again during a stressful move and I'm still drinking it. It's so hard to stay off the stuff.

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  85. I am hardcore soda addict, have been since my early 20's. It started when I'd grab a Big Gulp at the gas station on my way to work to "wake up".I don't like coffee. I never thought much of it until I met my husband who was seriously shocked at the amount I drank each day. But, can't give it up. I have...once for a year...another time for a year when I was pregnant...tried to cut back many times but always fall back to where I am, drinking a bucketful a day. I loooooooo "the burn"...so I giggled to read that. I prefer diet Coke because it has more of a burn for me than diet Pepsi but I prefer diet Pepsi to mix with my Jack Daniels over coke because it's sweeter. And a straw is a must. I keep tons of them so I never run out. LOL

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  86. I have never been much of a pop drinker, but I haven't bought it in 13 years when I decided to make a life style change. Our family has been much healthier. I never liked coffee either, but now I will have some once or twice a week with stevia and milk. Although when I have coffee, I have a tough time sleeping at night. And I really like the Shaklee energy tea with stevia and a little lemon, cold (just pour the tea into the water), but I mostly just drink water.

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  87. HiYa!!!!!

    I'm glad that you gave up the pop habit!!!!!!!:)

    I was a Diet Coke aholic. Since my teenage years is when it started.
    I'm a diabetic and having sugar free pop didn't do anything to my blood sugars and it was 0 calories.....I can't go wrong drinking it.

    When my appendix burst in Feb. of 2002 and I had it taken out, my cravings stopped for Diet Coke. And the strangest thing was that I
    couldn't stand the taste of cola anymore. It was really weird.

    Now I drink water and when we go out for a bite to eat, I always order
    water with lemon in it. I've lost about 25lbs. It will be 2 yrs in August
    sinsce I've had cola.

    I feel better since I stopped all diet pop nearly 2 yrs ago.

    You're doing great!!!!!!!

    Pam

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  88. Good for you! Just think of this too...you will also cut down on getting those vertical wrinkles around your mouth from the motion of sucking on a straw. This is the same motion that causes those wrinkles in a smoker. You can always tell if a woman smokes when she's older from those wrinkles...or she drank from straws all the time. Same thing! The acidicness and the sugar was also terrible for your teeth to say nothing of what it would do to your organs. Thanks for sharing for your readers that it can be done!

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  89. Congrats!!!!!!!!!!

    Could you please teach me - step by step - what you did????

    I have been trying to quit soda (I only take Coke, not Pepsi) for the last 3 to 4 years, and I keep falling of the wagon (or back to the can, bottle, fountain ...)

    PLEASE, HELP!!!!!!

    Beatriz

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  90. It DEFINITELY can be an addiction! Major snaps to you for being able to put that behind you...one day at a time. :)

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  91. I'm a Dr. Pepper girl! I eat pretty healthy and workout almost every day, but soda and coffee with tons of creamer are my downfall. I can completely relate! I wouldn't drink it if I didn't eat out so much, which is relatively new thing because I've been so busy. Working + a husband that's out of town a lot = eating out. Need to stop that!

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  92. A large coke from McDonalds. There is NO comparison. None. And it's all coke to me, too...Dr. Pepper, Sprite, whatever. It's coke. None of that 'pop' or 'soda' business! Seriously, even if we're out to dinner, I'd rather have a coke than an adult beverage. Preferably a Shirley Temple, but a coke would suffice. I don't have an addiction to it (that would be chocolate, haha), but it's certainly high on my cravings list! Good for you for quitting and it's a great example for your son!!

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  93. OMgoodness...maybe it's a Midwest thing...totally get the Pespi can...fountain Coke. Totally. And I was on that kick a while ago...but then, like you...just stopped. Now...coffee is something I am NOT willing to give up...but, at least I got rid of the other "brown stuff". Good for you...much better for the long term.
    I'm really a Pierre fan...bubbly, flavored water. LaCroix is good too.
    Love your blog.
    Lets hope for some spring weather around here!
    Jen

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  94. I gave up coke for a couple of years, then I'm not sure what happened. Now, I pop one open most mornings, or at least have one with lunch. I had to give up gluten, which hasn't been as bad as I thought it would be. I'd love to give up sugar, but it seems to have a strangle hold on me. :P

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    Replies
    1. Strangle hold.. that describes me and sugar exactly!

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  95. Congratulations! I rarely drink soft drinks. If we're eating out somewhere, I sometimes order a Sprite and occasionally I'll get a Dr. Pepper, but I prefer water (and certainly not flavored!).

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  96. You go girl!! Wish I had your will power and conviction. Sugar is my one vice, and drink soda when it's around otherwise it's ice tea. Good luck and I'm so proud of you!
    *hugs*deb

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  97. Way to go! I LOVED fountain pop, but I had to stop drinking it because of health issues related to the high fructose corn syrup. It was certainly hard to give it up, but other than the occasional holiday party, I haven't had any in almost a year. And when I did have it after quitting, it tasted like Windex or cleaner or something really gross. I never liked tea before, because I it had very little flavor (pop has a very strong flavor!), but after not having pop in such a long time, I've really been enjoying herbal tea!

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  98. Wow - reading through all of these comments really makes me think we (our society) has a serious problem with sugar. I count myself in that category as well. Within the last year I weaned myself down to only on Diet Coke in the morning, compared to 3 or 4 throughout the day. Getting down to that single can was tough. Then deciding to try to give up that morning one. . .woah. Mostly it's habit and laziness - easy, portable and so yum. I don't believe I'll ever be cured - just more and more days between indulgences. If I tell myself I can NEVER have it again, I want it even more. But saying to myself "once in a while" (just like with sugar), makes it easier.

    By the way, the ad at the bottom of this page is for Diet Coke. Thought that was sort of funny.

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  99. Way to go on quitting coke! Although I have to disagree with your fountain coke vs canned coke opinion. I think canned coke is sooo much better (more carbonation and colder, just saying :P) but I do agree that they do not taste the same. I keep planning on quitting soda but then its sweet nectar just calls me back everytime :)

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  100. I'm in the process of giving up Coke. I take an all natural product by It Works...Greens. Get all your "Superfoods" in for the day with one serving! One serving is your 8+ fruit and vegetables for the day!! I've noticed on the days I take my Greens that I don't crave Coke...How AWESOME is that!! :) They offer lots of supplements, skin care and even a skinny wrap that tones, tightens, and firms. Let me know if you're interested. jamiebacon.myitworks.com

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  101. I just kicked the soda habit, too! Strangely enough, it happened after a fast, too. Anyway, what has been a great sub for me is La Croix sparkling water cans. They are naturally flavored. No sugar or sugar sub, no salt, no artificial anything. Love them!

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  102. I too am a magazine hoarder. Almost every cabinet in my house has old magazines in it. And of course I have just a few by the sofa, so by the looks of things you would never suspect that I have the Traditional Home, February 1998 in my kitchen cabinet. If we ever had a house fire, we would have no hope! ha. I am slowly trying to break myself of the magazine thing. Good luck on your Coke journey. I've never been a pop-ahololic, but I would think it would be a tough habit to break!

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  103. Congrats to you! Now if you'll excuse me, I'm thirsty after reading this and I'm going to get a diet coke! ;o)

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  104. In Australia we call it soft drink as a generic name. Coke is coke. But that stuff will kill you and not in a million years would I drink it. Good for you for giving it up. Please don't ever take it up again. Water is the best, and here we can drink good old tap water. Yea!

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  105. Good for you! My best friend and I get at LEAST 2 drinks from McDs every day. Tea for me and Coke for her. We get it. I quit smoking 2 packs a day on January 4th though so that's enough quitting for me for now. Let me tell you- you obsess about cigarettes for quite a while too. :-) I still smell them occasionally and just sigh.

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  106. You should take all the money you saved by not buying soda and buy yourself something special - something that you would NEVER spend "that much" money on - a special soap or lotion, make-up, whatever. You deserve it!

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  107. I'm a Diet coke loyalist, and as much as people try to convince me that I'll die of it, I decided a long time ago that because I don't smoke pot, or do crack or sleep around, I'm allowed to have my one diet coke a day. I'm an artist and that one diet coke at lunch gives me an extra burst of creativity very cheaply. In spite of this I'm totally behind you in improving yourself. Yay! Keep moving upward, it only gets better.

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  108. So, I love soda! In NC we have Cheerwine...it's really sweet and bubbly. I know I need more water so for Christmas we got a Soda Stream. We use it just for the bubbles! It's a cheap easy way to make seltzer water. I get all the bubbly goodness and the water! It's been great!

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  109. If you've never had a Coca-cola while in S. America you haven't yet lived. So MUCH better than fountain or canned...hands down (made with actual sugar and not corn syrup like in the US). With that said, I couldn't drink a Dr.P again after not drinking it during my entire first pregnancy. Probably a good thing. Now I should get serious about eliminating cherry coke completely even though I really don't have it that often.

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  110. I tend to go in cycles. I'm a Pepsi or Dr. Pepper Girl (Pepsi is nasty warm, Dr. Pepper is okay). No plastic bottles for me either.

    I'll manage to taper down to 1 a week and then find it doesn't even taste good, so I'll just do no more than 1 a week, but often less. Then it starts sneaking back in. Because I'm exhausted and need a pick me up through the afternoon. Or I have a headache and the caffeine helps. Or just because I suddenly have a craving. I find though that when I don't drink soda, I drink more water and I sleep better. So I'm better rested when I can stay off it. I'm on an upswing right now. I think I've had a soda nearly every day for the last week...and reading this really makes me want a second one...

    The sound of the pop tab gets me every time. Unfortunately, I'm in an office full of soda drinkers, so I won't be thinking about it at all and then "pop", it's a struggle again. : /

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  111. Fountain Coke is the best...nectar of the gods, I say! I treat myself to about 1 or 2 per week from McDonald's. Good for you for having the willpower to stop.

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  112. Congratulations!!! I am trying to give it up but I love the burn!! What kind of cleanse did you do???

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    Replies
    1. Hello Nikki! I did an Advocare cleanse -- it wasn't too bad at all! (At least compared to what I thought it would be.) :)

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