I used to be a heavy cola drinker (somewhere between 2 to 4 cans a day) and I decided for me, pop’s ok in moderation but consuming it daily in the amounts I was could never be defined as a healthy habit.
What I most enjoyed: it’s nice and cold, easy to grab and go plus had some “texture” to it (the carbonation). Although I like a bit of fruit juice, it’s too “syrupy” for me to find it suitable as a main liquid refreshment and plain water wasn’t cutting it either.
I realized the trick to kicking the addiction was finding a replacement beverage that checks the boxes for both the convenience and taste factor.
Here’s A Replacement That Worked
- Keep a jug of water refrigerated at all times. It has to be prepared fresh daily or sealed well because once it tastes a bit stale, you’re turned off it for awhile.
- Squeeze fresh lemon or lime juice in the jug, as much as desired, tossing in the just squeezed fruit wedges too.
- When serving, pour over a full glass of crushed ice. The frozen chips add a bit of “texture” that I felt was an acceptable alternative to the carbonated soda. No carbonation, but the sensation was satisfying enough.
- Optional: Incorporating fresh leaves of mint are a nice flavor bomb too (rub the leaves first to release their oils).
- I learned keeping it cold, always at the ready and lots of crushed ice on hand is key.
- Don’t store any pop in the house, especially canned. Once the tab is pulled, it’s too easy to feel obligated to guzzle the whole thing (otherwise it’s wasteful).
- If you notice in the beginning that you *must* have some, stash a small bottle in the refrigerator. I found allowing myself a sip or two did the trick to appease my craving. Be careful to only take sips when the urge is to guzzle down 2 Litres.
- Keep sports bottles at the ready so they’re handy to fill up when running out the door. Simply pound frozen cubes finer for the chips to scoop up nicely into the empty flask.
- Unexpected benefit to quitting colas: My dental cleanings are going much better. Turns out sodas stain teeth quite badly (open mouth wide and look at the *inside* of your bottom teeth. See those stains? Yech). Quit drinking colas and the dental hygienist has much less polishing/removal to do. Sweet bonus!
Be patient and give it a week, the craving dissipates and soon you’re satisfied with the citrus flavored water. For me, the ice made all the difference.
This is a great healthy alternative that’s simple (and cheap) to maintain.