I quit drinking soda back in college for the most part, though I saw a few resurgences of  Coca-Cola addiction (yes, the soda) after I met my husband.

3917079414_9027b8fed1_oBut the truth is that soda (or pop as some of y'all call it), is like the worst possible thing you could drink, next to alcoholic sweet stuff, if you're trying to lose weight (or even maintain a reasonably healthy weight, if we're being honest here). 

My husband quit drinking soda for two weeks one time and LITERALLY dropped 20 pounds like it was nothing. 

Want to lose weight? Learn how I lost 100 pounds and kept it off without starving, sweating or surgery. 

Plus, there are plenty of other health reasons you shouldn't drink soda - preservatives, caffeine, other various chemicals and unsafe substances - at the very least. 

So you wanna quit soda? You ready to get the soda monkey off your back and overcome your addiction forever?

Here are 7 ways you can break free from your addiction to soda. 

Soda is full of sugar and high fructose corn syrup, both of which are proven to be addictive - plus caffeine can easily become an addiction. Those facts alone make it pretty clear - in addition to the bubbly sweetness that you've come to crave, there are physical reasons you want that soda - your body is addicted to it!

But if you want to get and stay healthy, you've gotta do it. Your ability to lose weight, and in fact, your health in general absolutely depends on it!

High amounts of sugar and high fructose corn syrup are known to cause widespread inflammation in the body, resulting in chronic or even fatal diseases, such as diabetes, heart and circulatory challenges; even cancer.

You can break free from this unhealthy habit! Soda isn't an easy temptation to resist, but you can do this - and I'm here to help you.

Try these life hacks to help you overcome your soda habit:

1. Look closer! Evaluate your soda habit. How often do you reach for your favorite pop drink? Do you have it with every meal and snack?

  • The first step to breaking an unhealthy soda habit is to evaluate your drinks throughout the week to discover how much of your liquid intake is soda. With this information, you can create a plan to make some changes.

2. Get some knowledge! Learn about the health risks. Studying the health risks can encourage you to stop drinking soda.

  • Studies have linked soda directly to obesity, diabetes, and tooth enamel erosion. These sweet drinks also have a negative impact on your bones. If you drink a large amount of soda, then you're more likely to have brittle bones.

3. Understand and be real! Start with realistic expectations. It's easier to eliminate soda with a slower process.

  • Although you may be tempted to try going cold turkey, studies show that this is more likely to make you cheat and start drinking soda again. The addictive power of soda means it's easier to eliminate by using a process that cuts it down slowly.
  • If you have soda three times a day, then start the process by cutting it down to two times a day. Then, drink it once a day. Next, you can drink it every other day until it's gone.

4. Water it down! Mix your soda with water. As you work on eliminating it completely from your diet, you can fight the soda habit by mixing it with water. This makes the drink less sugary, so your body will start to get used to drinks with a smaller amount of sugar.

5. Switch it up! Find tasty alternatives. It's easier to break a soda habit if you replace it with a delicious and different drink. 

  • Water is usually recommended as the alternative to drinking soda. However, if you hate the taste of water, then you can dress it up with fruit, flavor drops, powders, and mixes.
  • Tea and coffee without sugar are also good alternatives. You can find decaffeinated versions without any calories. Herbal teas can be a fun change.

6. Fight soda cravings. These cravings aren't easy to handle, but you can work on them.

  • If you have a craving for soda, try drinking an entire glass of water to fight it. Water can make you feel full and may eliminate the craving.
  •  At first, you can also try natural fruit juices and smoothies to fight the craving because it may be based on your addiction to sugar. Although these alternatives also have sugar, they're healthier options and have vitamins.

7. Avoid the usual triggers. Do you always drink soda with your favorite takeout meal? Do you buy a soda each time you go past your favorite vending machine?

  •  To change your habits, it's important to avoid the triggers that motivate you. Instead of ordering a soda with your usual takeout, consider making a healthy smoothie at home.
  • If avoiding the vending machine is difficult, then try buying bottled water instead of soda or ask a friend to hold you accountable.

Are you ready? Be strong!

Know that you can overcome a soda habit by taking control of your lifestyle. Soon, you'll be used to the change and feel better than you may have in years! Your body will thank you for making such a healthy decision.

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