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How to give up soda in 3 steps

As of June, six states had imposed a soda tax to try to curb excess consumption, while more states are jumping on the nutritional governance bandwagon

Americans love soda. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lists sugar-sweetened beverages as the leading source of added sugars in Americans’ diets. Even sugar-free sodas are an unhealthy addition to diets because of artificial sweeteners like aspartame, cyclamate, saccharin, acesulfame-k or sucralose, pointed out healthline.com in May 2018.

The CDC informs, “Frequently drinking sugar-sweetened beverages is associated with weight gain/obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, kidney diseases, non-alcoholic liver disease, tooth decay and cavities, and gout, a type of arthritis.” Regarding sugar-free soda, healthline.com’s report explained that “using artificial sweeteners and drinking high amounts of diet soda is associated with an increased risk of obesity and metabolic syndrome.”

As of June, six states had imposed a soda tax to try to curb excess consumption, while more states are jumping on the nutritional governance bandwagon, according to thebalance.com last month.

Sheila Varshney, registered dietician nutritionist for Square Plate Solutions in Oakland, California, said there are three ways individuals can diminish or eliminate soda from their diets:

1. Wean off slowly: “If you drink multiple sodas a day, try dropping down to one per day. If you drink one each day, then try cutting back to one every other day. Slowly scaling back your soda habit may help you be more successful than going cold turkey.“
2. Substitute: “As you cut back on soda, you may find yourself thirsting for something. Fill this need with a healthy beverage, like sparkling water. Setting your mind to this alternative will lower the likelihood of you grabbing a can of soda.“
3. Fill fridge with good stuff: “If you are the type to drink soda when it’s available, the easy solution is to make it less available. Instead of stocking soda in your fridge, stock coconut water or cucumber-infused water. When soda is out of sight, it will be out mind.”

And, reminds CDC, because half of soda consumption occurs away from the home, bring along an alternative or choose wisely at restaurants.