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How can I stop drinking soda?

Regular, sweetened soda is one of the worst sugary offenders. Wean yourself off of your dependence by mixing half of your regular soda with half of its diet equivalent for a while. This can ease your transition into the switch to diet soda, which doesn't have the same sugary taste. But research shows that drinking diet sodas isn't healthy and can increase your risk for metabolic syndrome, kidney damage and obesity, as well as damaging your cells and teeth. Instead, try to skip the soda altogether by drinking more water (with lemon or lime, if you prefer) or making your own bubbly beverages. Seltzer water is a great, healthy alternative that you can dress up in a variety of ways. You could try flavored varieties, but it might be tastier to make your own. Add strawberries, melon slices, lemon or lime wedges, raspberries or mint to your seltzer water for a more interesting take.
Keri Gans
Nutrition & Dietetics
Many people wean themselves off regular soda by switching to diet. While you may not like it at first, you’ll get used to it. If it’s strictly the bubbles you’re after, switch to plain or flavored seltzer, club soda, or water. Here are some other tips to help you stop drinking soda:

1. If you currently drink soda, cut back gradually over a two-week period. For example, if you now drink five cans per day, go to four, then three, and so on until you’re off it completely.

2. Experiment with alternatives to soda that aren’t sweetened with sugar and contain 25 calories or less per serving -- iced or hot herbal teas, for example.

3. Limit diet sodas to one or two a day. Then switch to seltzer or club soda.

4. Don’t keep soda in the house.

5. Enjoy one serving of regular soda on a special occasion, like at a ball game (as long as you don’t have season tickets).
The Small Change Diet: 10 Steps to a Thinner, Healthier You

More About this Book

The Small Change Diet: 10 Steps to a Thinner, Healthier You

THE ONLY “DIET” PLAN YOU WILL EVER NEED! No deprivation, no struggles. Just ten small changes that will transform your life. Keri Gans, spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association, shares...
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Sodas are packed full of staggering amounts of sugar and calories. In this video, Dr. Oz helps a family who is addicted to soda, offering alternatives that are healthier, cheaper, and smarter. 

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.