How To Quit Soda

It can be so difficult to break a habit.  Especially when there are emotions and enjoyment attached to it!  If you drink sugary soda daily (even the ones with sugar alternatives and the like), removing this habit from your life is one of the most straightforward things you can do to increase the quality of your diet and further reach your health goals.  Quitting soda is a simple task but that doesn’t mean it's an easy task to do. Below are some curated tips to help you get out of the habit of drinking soda and find replacements for the joy surrounding the habit itself!

Setting Yourself Up For Success

A great place to start is with your environment.  The biggest environmental factor you can control is availability. Research shows that if there is soda in your fridge, and you are in the habit of drinking it, you will most likely consume it.  This is a human response!  If you choose to not keep a coke in your fridge and you instead must get dressed and drive 10 minutes to get one, you are more inclined just to grab some water.  Ensuring that the soda that you are trying to break up with is not in your home is a key first step!

AIP / Paleo / Keto-friendly Soda Alternatives

If you don’t love the taste of water, we get it.  There are actually some awesome flavored water options for a more healthy alternative to soda. 

Flavored Drinks to try:

Hot or iced tea (spruce it up with a twist of lemon!)

Homemade flavored water

Sparkling water with or without flavoring

Sparkling water with a splash of fruit juice

Handling the Caffeine Cravings

If you are used to a soda with caffeine, breaking the habit can be especially difficult. Some options for you to keep up your energy or get a boost include:

More sleep

Coffee, black or with dairy free milk

Hot or iced tea

Yerba Mate Tea

90%+ Dark Chocolate square

Managing and Minimizing Sugar Cravings

There is not a substitute for the amount of sugar or sugar alternatives found in a soda, so when you drop drinking it, your body will at times crave the sugar it was used to.  As you transition, be sure you are eating a lot of protein rich foods with each and every meal. If you feel hungry, eat a healthy meal or snack - but know that it is often just your body getting used to the new normal.  This type of hunger is typically very temporary!  The other thing to focus on is sleep.  Sleep deprivation can drive up sugar cravings while also reducing self control.  Be sure you are getting plenty of rest - particularly as you make this change.

Tracking Your Progress Without A Scale

Weighing oneself can be difficult and is not always advised.  It can lead to frustrations if you don’t see results right away. Instead of relying on the numbers from a scale, try some other ways to track your progress and stay motivated.  One idea is to listen to your soda cravings and every time you want a soda, fill the jar with the money you would have spent on it instead.  Use this moolah to buy something fun for yourself!  Another great way to track your progress is with a calendar system. Get a calendar and mark off every day you don’t consume soda and then at the end of the month give yourself a non-food related treat based on how you did. 

Bottom line, we know removing any kind of food from your diet can be so challenging - and sugary sodas are some of the most difficult to shift away from.  Quitting soda is not an easy decision, but with the right steps and motivation…you got this!