Bad habits die hard, and soda habits are no exception. Not only are soft drink habits expensive, there are also several health disadvantages to the habit including increased belly fat, decreased bone strength and an increase in cavities and gum disease.
Kicking your soda habit is the best thing you can do for both your wallet and your overall health. Easier said than done, right?
Satisfy your soda cravings and kick the habit for good with these helpful tips.
Tips to Kicking the Habit
One of the most important things to remember when quitting a bad habit is to not replace it with another one. If you are used to drinking 4 cans of soda throughout the day, switching to 4 cups of coffee isn’t going to be a healthy swap.
To avoid replacing one bad habit with another, try:
Decreasing your cravings
Change your taste buds’ preference by swapping out the bad for the good is a great start in the right direction. Try replacing three sodas with one cup of plain water and two cups of a healthy alternative.
Sometimes sitting behind a desk all day, or always being in the car can make you reach for things out of habit and boredom more than necessity. Place a bottle of water, or a cup of ice where you typically keep your soda so when you do make the reach, you’re reaching towards a healthy choice.
Refreshing Alternatives to Soda
There are plenty of other refreshing beverages, with nutritional value, that you can drink instead of soda. It’s still important, though, to consider what’s in your soda substitution. Replacing soda with high-in-sugar fruit juices, teas, or coffee loaded with added sugars are going to be just as damaging to your teeth and your overall health.
These healthier, low-calorie thirst-quenchers are sure to satisfy your taste buds.
Many soda drinkers are turning to flavored waters to kick their carbonation habit. For an even healthier alternative, create your own infused water by adding slices of your favorite fruits and veggies. Adding watermelon, cucumber, or mint creates a refreshing beverage. Beware of adding in citrus fruits such as lemons, limes, and oranges that can be damaging to your enamel.
Green tea, whether hot or iced, has the capabilities to reduce the risk of several types of cancer, heart disease, obesity, kidney stones and possibly even cavities. Green tea is also a calorie-free choice and is high in natural antioxidants.
Essential Oil Flavored Water
Have a citrus-flavored soda addiction? Adding lemon and lime slices into the water can be damaging on your enamel because of the acidity of the fruit. Instead, add-in a few drops of citrus flavored essential oils. You’ll be harnessing flavor from less harmful components like the peels of the fruit. This allows you to get the same great, sweet taste with far less acidic content than the actual fruit itself.
It may be hard to adjust to at first, but this strong drink can not only satisfy your soda craving, but it can also aid in digestion because it is full of healthy bacteria. Kombucha is not the cheapest alternative to soda, so be sure you’re not replacing your soda habit with this new one completely.
Flavored Sparkling Water
This fizzy, sparkling water will give you the carbonation and sweetness you are craving, without the calories or added sugars. Check the labels on sparkling water and make sure that the ingredients are only water and flavoring. Avoid any that have added sugars or artificial sweeteners.
Kicking the habit once and for all can be done with the right determination and dedication. Stay motivated by asking our Houston dentist how your teeth have improved by comparing before and after exams so you can see the difference for yourself.