I went cold turkey, but made sure to have a cup of coffee first thing each morning (to combat the caffeine withdrawal headaches). Been 7 months for me now, and i have no plans of going back...I CRAVE water now, and sodas taste weird! You can do it!
Fitness Minutes: (60)
10 5/29/13 7:53 A
I totally cut it out last week-went from 4-6 cans of diet a day, to nothing. It was HARD-really bad headaches and lots of crankiness. It was my only caffeine source so I was dealing with some major caffeine withdrawal. But, after a week, the headaches went away and my mood improved back to normal. I'm surprised too because I'm not craving it like I thought I would. Don't plan on ever drinking it again :)
I gave it up 5 years ago and STILL get cravings for Diet Dr. Pepper and diet Root Beer. What on earth was in those that I'm still craving it??
I went from 2 or 3 cans per day down to 1 per day and then 1 every 2 or 3 days and progressed from there. I also buy those carbonated waters too that I really like. But when I craved when I wouldn't allow myself any, I drank tons and tons of water.
Its a hard habit to break but it can be done.
Fitness Minutes: (6,447)
45 5/29/13 7:45 A
ugg.. Pop is SO hard to give up!!! i have to do it cold turkey... i have 2 or 3 days of headaches and crazy cravings.. then it gets easier.
Fitness Minutes: (26,093)
399 5/29/13 1:24 A
There are good suggestions here - one of the great things about this site is being able to take advantage of the experience of lots of people to customize a solution that works best. If you really think giving up soda will be an ongoing struggle, you could start a Streak - make it a goal to see how many days you can not drink pop! But I bet after a while you will find the craving for it will fade.
Fitness Minutes: (1,180)
132 5/29/13 1:11 A
Just think about how happy your teeth are. :)
I only have pop once in a blue moon (usually either Dr. Pepper or Mountain Dew). I try to stick to water, but apple juice is a big weakness.
Seriously. Soda is ridiculously expensive, and has zero benefit. It's a huge waste of money.
Think of something you really want, but you haven't bought for yourself because it's "wasteful" or "frivolous." Then calculate how much money you've been spending on soda every day, and promise yourself that you're going to save up to buy that other item with your saved soda money. Find an attractive jar or canister, or decorate an empty coffee can, oatmeal carton, etc with pictures of the item you're going to buy, and every day that you go without soda, put your savings in that container in cash. Also, swear to yourself that if you do buy a soda, the money for it has to come OUT of your container.
And then follow up on your promise to yourself. When you've collected enough money for your "reward," go and get it with no regrets or guilt. A penny saved is a penny earned, so you will have earned that prize by not wasting money on something harmful.
Also, you're probably wrong about this being something you have to struggle with for the rest of your life. Once you've been without it for a few weeks, you'll probably find that it's not that big a deal. I've had times in my life when I drank huge amounts of (diet) soda, and I've had times when I've decided (or needed) to give it up. Right now, I don't drink it because I'm living in an isolated place where it's relatively hard to find, expensive, and recycling the containers is a problem. I'm not willing to spend $1.25 a can, so I just don't buy it. I had 5 or 6 cans of Diet Dr. Pepper with me when I came here last August, and I drank the last one four weeks ago. If you don't have it in your house you probably won't miss it.
Fitness Minutes: (26,009)
200 5/23/13 12:37 P
I went cold turkey with pop. It was really hard for the first month, and the only thing I concentrated on for that month. That was over 30 years ago. I've never looked back. I can't stand the stuff now, and see it as only good for cleaning up battery acid.
When you want ice cream. Have some berries with sugar free whipped cream on top. For me, fruit is a cheat/dessert.
I can't really think of what to swap because I just eat meat/veggies, oil/butter, and eggs. I'm struggling to remember what I used to eat.
I try to eat lower glycemic foods, so my blood sugars stay low. If they get high, I crave sweets. Also pay attention to sauces/ dressings. Ketchup, and dressings have sugar in them. So you can make your own dressing with olive oil/vinegar, and spices. Not sure ketchup is a necessity. I would just use mayo, if I ate anything that it went with.
Mostly I would just look at the types of foods you eat, and compare the different brands. Cereals, bread, even vegetables differ in how much sugar they have, and fruit can be full of them. The simple exchange of berries for a banana can make a huge difference. You probably don't need to get into fruits/ veggies sugar content, but make 1-2 changes and you can lower the sugar you eat in your diet overall, and it may help you with cravings, especially when trying to cut pop, which is just sugar water.
5 large strawberries with whipped cream is 5 grams of sugar vs. 15 for a medium banana.
Drink water when you feel like a soda, try carbonated water if you have it.
Fitness Minutes: (8,582)
728 5/23/13 11:38 A
If you end up just having that "I need something fizzy" craving, try seltzer water without sugar or flavoring. Add some lemon juice, cucumber or watermelon slices, crushed herbs like mint, and you've got yourself a fizzy drink without the sugar and nasties that 'soda' has.
Fitness Minutes: (983)
15 5/23/13 11:35 A
Thanks Russ... Any good swap ideas for removing sugar?
Go cold turkey, and avoid other sugary foods. In 2-3 weeks your body will stop craving sweets as much. I quit pop about 2 years ago. I tried to quit for years by cutting down, but if you eat sugar, you will crave more. After 2-3 weeks, you will be able to ignore those cravings, except when you eat a lot of sugary foods, like birthday cake or such. At that point it takes some willpower, but it isn't the everyday thinking about pop, unless of course, you eat lots of sugar every day..lol
For me the problem was sugar. Pop was just the most obvious bad form of it, and the form I consumed the most. You just need to push sweets back in their place as an occasional thing, instead of a daily pick me up.
I quit drinking diet soda about 2 months ago. I put flavoring in carbonated water. Worked for me. I still get a craving once in a while, but I know I don't want to get started again. I did have withdraw from aspartame, but it went away in about a week. I think that was the worse part of the process. I still had caffeine from coffee.
Fitness Minutes: (10,094)
154 5/23/13 2:39 A
I would suggest weaning yourself off it slowly to avoid the caffeine withdrawal- it can be pretty unpleasant. If you drink say, 4 cans a day, then cut it down to three, and then later on two, and so on.
I agree with the suggestion to try the flavoured carbonated water. You can also try mixing carbonated water with fruit juice. Some people like water with a little lemon juice.
Fitness Minutes: (47,412)
16 5/23/13 1:22 A
I used to drink a crazy amount of Mt. Dew too, like 6 cans a day and very little water. One day about a year and a half ago when I first started trying to improve my diet I just decided to quit it all together. I was able to stop cold turkey by substituting the soda with apple juice (not that this is a long term solution.) After a while I was able to completely substitute the apple juice with water and herbal tea. I suppose doing it in stages like this is what helped me. Oh, but the bad thing about quitting the way I did was the killer headaches from the lack of caffeine for those first couple of weeks. Good luck to you!!
Edited by: HARLEYQUINN13 at: 5/23/2013 (01:30)
Fitness Minutes: (983)
15 5/22/13 11:57 P
The reason I made this decision is I work the overnight shift and had found myself drinking SO MUCH Mt. Dew. The issue is over time my body got used to all the caffeine and ever since High School I had suffered from migraines. The decision to quit pop came from the fact that right now I can end up suffering from caffeine headaches and they'd be just so debilitating but I'd rather suffer through the few Caffeine headaches and end up healthy than to be a slave of pop because I "just can't handle the pain."
First of all, congratulations for making such an important resolution. I was also practically addicted to Diet Coke, I couldn't imagine a lunch without it, or even just watching tv, I wouldn't be comfortable without sipping on it.
I've only just realized, though, that since I've started with SparkPeople, I haven't had a single drink of diet coke! And it wasn't fully intentional either.
I've been focusing so much on water and green tea and healthy smoothies that soda couldn't really fit in anywhere so I eliminated it! Once I tried to buy some and I thought about how I once read that soda can lead to weaker bones (or something!) and that put me off.
I'd suggest you fill up on water and herbal teas as much as possible (without forcing yourself though), and eventually your palate will change and no longer crave soda.
All that being said, don't deprive yourself too much! I did drink some Sprite once last week, but I just controlled the portion, so I could get the taste of it and be satisfied with that, without going off my meal plan too much. It worked! And it didn't really leave me feeling bloated or anything.
Just don't think about it as 'giving up for the rest of your life' too. That'll make it seem like a burdensome task! Good luck!!
Fitness Minutes: (15,946)
1,078 5/22/13 10:31 P
I did that in college! I started drinking more milk and water when I cut out pop. I did it cold turkey pretty much and haven't regretted it since! There are occasions where I have a small amount, but I no longer feel the need to HAVE to have it!
Try carbonated water with flavor - calorie free but still something different than tap.
Fitness Minutes: (983)
15 5/22/13 8:08 P
I'd also like to run a 5K some day... it's on my bucket list.
Fitness Minutes: (14,252)
9,662 5/22/13 8:01 P
Start cutting it half and half with water!
Fitness Minutes: (983)
15 5/22/13 7:48 P
I am trying so hard to remove Pop from my diet... I am 2 days into not drinking the ridiculously high caloric drink, and feeling great, but I know this is going to be something with I struggle with for the rest of my life. does anybody have any tips on overpowering that craving I have for sweet? or any tips for giving up pop period?
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