Cans of soft drink are bombs of sugar and unhealthy fatteners, we all know that. Have you made plans to take it easy on the sweet stuff?
These tips will give you a head start.
Take it easy
You're reading this article, which means that you're on the right track. However, in practice, quitting will prove much more difficult than in theory. So be realistic and take it easy. Stop drinking soft drinks from one day to the other and you probably won't succeed. Instead, let your body adjust to the change gradually. For example, those who usually drink several glasses of soft drink per day, ought to limit his habit to one glass a day. If you can keep that up for two weeks, you should reduce the amount to three soft drinks a week.
Mix it with water
Along the same lines as the take it easy philosophy: mix your favourite soft drink with water. You will automatically drink less and will ingest more water, which is healthier. Furthermore, the concentrated sweet taste is mitigated, causing your taste buds to adapt and after some time you will no longer need the 'pure' sweet taste of soft drinks.
Need a wake-up call? It's easy to ignore the calories in a glass of cola, but if you're aware of the contents, you might think twice before you open another can. A can of coke of 33 cl contains 139 kcal. Try downloading an app that keeps track of your calorie-intake per day, and see what you could consume instead of those 139 kcal. Then the next time you feel like drinking a soft drink, you'd rather stick to a small glass of 150 ml...
Non-sweetened cold tea
If you use a can of soft drink for your daily caffeine-boost and you don't like coffee, try switching to home-made ice tea. Just make a kettle of tea and let it cool down with ice cubes in the refrigerator. It's just as fresh, it gives a boost of energy and it's much more healthy. You can also add lemon or mint, for extra taste. In the 'detox-period', you could also add some sweetener, to make the transition a little easier.
Drink water first
When you feel the need to drink a glass of soft drink, quench your thirst with a big glass of cold water. Usually, it's not until afterwards that you realize that you grab that soft drink because you're thirsty, or even bored. After the glass of water, you can reconsider your need for a soft drink. Your lust for it may be disappeared, or perhaps you're now content with just a small glass.
Pimp that glass of water
Water, so boring and tasteless, is what you might think. But just a few slices of cucumber, some apple juice or a bit of lemon could improve the taste without adding a lot of calories. Frozen berries or a sprig of mint can also make it a lot more pleasant to drink a fresh glass of water.
Drink caffeine-free soft drinks
It might sound strange, but a recent study from the British Journal of Nutrition has shown that those start drinking caffeine-free soft drinks instead of the regular kind, start to drink less soft drinks over time, without even trying. A group of test subjects who had switched to the caffeine-free variety, drank 53% less soft drinks in the month after. The explanation is possibly our bodily addiction for caffeine, of which we want more and more, the more we drink it. A nice stepping stone for those who want to systematically reduce their soft drink intake.
Cold turkey for two weeks
Although taking it easy gradually provides the best results, you can still choose to stop drinking soft drinks altogether just like that. But if you do, then plan beforehand how long the you want to keep up the cold turkey method, for instance two weeks or one month. That's more easily mentally achievable than the thought of never drinking soft drinks again. A nice side-effect of this experience may be that after that period you might not even have a taste for soft drinks anymore, or at least not in the quantities you were used to. Our lust for sugar is adjusted to the dose we consume daily, so our body adapts quickly and automatically.
Save it for special occasions
Once you've succeeded in limiting your soft drink consumption, you can categorise it under 'sweets for special occasions'. There's nothing wrong in having a glass of soft drinks now and then. What's more: those who sin every now and then with a sugary drink, can more easily maintain the abstinence from soft drinks at other times.