Friday, February 24, 2012

The Trick to Quitting Soda

I've gone two months now without drinking soda. I've lost about 16 pounds and I feel great, but the journey has not been without difficulty. I love Dr. Pepper, LOVE it! I also like the occasional Coke or ginger ale. Before I quit, I was drinking at least a gallon of soda a day. I drink mainly water now, with some milk and a glass of healthy green juice now and again. I used to think water tasted disgusting. I'm learning to enjoy it.

I still crave soda though, especially when I go out to eat, drive up to a gas station, see someone else drink one, or walk the aisles of a grocery most of the time.

The trick to resist these cravings is to focus on the times soda has let you down. Here are my soda let-downs:

Withdrawals. I don't get headaches when I quit. I feel like tiny metallic insects are eating every bit of calcium in my body.

Heart Palpitations. For a while, every time I tried to lie down to sleep, my heart would go crazy.

I didn't like it. I'm glad this occurrence is super rare lately.

Fattness. About a year ago, I gained enough weight and could no longer put on my wedding ring.

Nastiness. This is the best way to alleviate my cravings. All I have to do is think back to this incident and my desire to drink one goes away.

A couple years ago I used to stop by a fast food place nearly every morning to buy a sandwich and a soda. I know, horrible for me. No wonder I had heart palpitations and high cholesterol.

One day I sipped my soda and thought it tasted a tab bit funny. I just thought their syrup mixture must have been off. I sipped it again and noticed that the ice against the lid looked weird too. I pulled off the top and the ice did look funny, all clumped together in one big ball.

I reached in to grab a piece, but the whole thing came out, dripping soda and chunks of ice. I stared at the mess in my hands as realization dawned on me and I fought an urge to puke.

I had a large crumpled plastic bag in my hand. Who knows how it got in there or what it had in it before it made its way into the ice. Needless to say, I dumped the whole thing. Now, all I have to do is think about that bag and imagine the places it might have been or contents it might have had to make saying no to soda easier.

Find your ways to resist and quit today.


Snowbrush said...

I don't drink the stuff, so when I saw the title to your post, I initially wondered why anyone would stop baking with soda!

Brent Wescott said...

I swear you were going to say it was the head of Bobo the Bear in your cup.

And I know this is your point, but I have to say it: that's what you get for drinking early in the morning. I limit my soda consumption to any time after 10 AM. Until, like midnight. That's okay, right?

Love the drawings.

Andrew Leon said...

I used to drink that much soda. Haven't had one in, like, 4 years, now. It does get easier, but the sudden craving still does happen every once in a while. I took a sip from one a couple years ago, just to see, and almost gagged on the sweetness.

Emily White said...

I have not had any pop (yes, it's pop) in so long, I can't even remember when I quit. I think it was around the first time I got pregnant. My cravings led me to eating very healthy food, so I've cut all that junk out since then.

Lucky for me, though, I grew up on caffeine free pepsi. No horrible cravings afterwards.

And yes, that bag would most definitely be enough to deter me. That is really disgusting.

Chanel said...

I quit Dr Pepper for a couple of months.

Then I found that my local movie palace had Dublin Dr. Pepper and it only took one sip that one night at the movies to break me down again.

But I've limited consumption to one soda a day. That's better than nothing.

I don't know if a plastic bag would be enough to stop me, though. I worked at a restaurant and one day our ice maker broke so we had to keep going to the store to buy bags of ice to fill it because nobody would drink a fountain soda without ice. I imagine that the plastic bag you found was probably from a bag of ice, and therefore not entirely disgusting.

Charlie Pulsipher said...

@Snowbrush- I thought some people might get confused as many insist on calling it "pop". I'm glad you don't drink it. Makes quitting so much easier if you never start.

@Brent- I know. I often got diet, but it isn't any better really. I think drinking late is just as bad as drinking early. You sleep with all those calories in you. Yuck.

@Andrew- My wife insists on letting us drink one on special occasions. We had one each on Valentine's day. It wasn't great.

@Emily- Pop? You mean a shortening of the original Soda Pop? Why would you shorten it to the second word, especially when workers were called "Soda Jerks", not "Pop Jerks"? Just saying ;)

Yes, the bag was beyond disgusting.

@Chanel- I love the Dublin Dr Pepper. I feel the same way about Mexican Cokes. There's something better about real cane sugar.

The plastic bag was also too thin to be an ice bag. It was more like a grocery bag, but clear and without lettering. I shudder still thinking about it.

DB Stewart said...

Pop (soda) is the devil. I gave it up too. My withdrawal symptoms included extreme sweating. You are a brave, brave man.

Martin Willoughby said...

I've cut out sugar in tea, biscuits and (mostly) cakes. I feel better for it, but there are days I sure miss the sugar hit.

Alyson Burdette said...

Gross story! My bf recently gave up pop-it's been an interesting journey.

Candice said...

Good for you, quitting soda. I'm still struggling with the very idea of letting go of Coke. But it's kind of getting worrisome how much I like that stuff.

PS: That bag story? EEEEWWW!!!

Charlie Pulsipher said...

@dbs- I go through about a week of bone pain in my legs and back. I don't know why, but I assume that means I am more addicted than most. The thought of going through that again keeps me from giving in.

@Martin- I've never been a big sugar fan, except for the soda. It does feel great without it, but I also get little sugar tugs now and again. I bought a cookie yesterday.

@Alyson- Good for him. I hope it sticks.

@Candice- You can do it! I have faith in you. Just think of the plastic bag and you'll make it. :)

Ryshia Kennie said...

The plastic bag was enough for me. At least enough to stay away from fast-food sodas. Tagged you for Lucky 7 Meme.

Charlie Pulsipher said...

Thanks, Ryshia. Feel free to think of the plastic bag anytime you're tempted to go back to fast food soda.

Anonymous said...

A gallon of soda, wow, I personally feel too much emphasis is placed on soda and not say other carbs, like bread and cakes and cookies.

At most you should drink 3 cups a day
perhaps less, I think folks drink more because food is salty or hot,
put a few ice cubs in soda and take sips and your done and try to save those few sips for the last of the meal.

Also, orange juice and other concentrated fruit drinks are bad,

Anonymous said...

Soda is good for you, isn't it? I figure anything that can clean corrosion off of a battery has to be a whiz at cleaning out your body and promoting good health. Right?

Charlie Pulsipher said...

Thanks Anonymous. I don't eat a lot of bread or sweets, so soda was my biggest source of sugar. Also, whole grain bread isn't that bad.

Charlie Pulsipher said...

Doug, no...not at all.

Donna K. Weaver said...

This just made me smile.

Charlie Pulsipher said...

Thanks, Donna. That's pretty much the point of my blog...when I get around to drawing my goofy comics.

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