Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I'm Going to Try

I am attempting to give up pop (or soda as some of you weirdos call it). I have read so many articles lately about how terrible both regular and diet pop are for you.

Here's the problem....I LOVE Diet Mountain Dew. It started with regular Dew in high school. I kid you not I would drink six Mountain Dews a day, I was honestly addicted. When our high school changed the pop machines from Pepsi to Coke products I almost dropped out. All throughout college, I would go to the gas station and get a mini-bag of Doritios and a Mountain Dew for lunch...like almost every day. When I started dating J he convinced me to make the switch Diet Mountain Dew, which after kicking and screaming and making gagging noises I converted. I am no longer addicted but I love my Diet Dew.
I read this great article and it really motivated me to give it up. It lists "8 Ways Soda Fizzles Your Health."

pH of Soda = pH of Vinegar
For one, soda, no matter who makes it, is the most acidic beverage you can buy, with a pH of about 2.5, about the same as vinegar. Why does that matter? Acid oxidizes whatever it comes in contact with. If you put soda or vinegar on metal, it will rust it quickly.

Drink Soda, Leach Calcium
If you drink soda, which also contains high levels of phosphorous, you will leach calcium from your bones. Dr. Michael Murray from the Encyclopedia of Natural Medicine concluded, “It appears that increased soft drink consumption is a major factor that contributes to osteoporosis.” Furthermore, Dr. Elson Haas, author of The Detox Diet states, “Tooth loss, periodontal disease, and gingivitis can be problems, especially with a high phosphorus intake, particularly from soft drinks.”

Soda Will Dissolve your Tooth Enamel
Weak bones is just the beginning. According to Dr. James Howenstein. author of A Physician’s Guide to Natural Health Products That Work, the high sugar content of soda is awful. He states, “”In an interesting experiment the sugar from one soft drink was able to damage the white blood cells’ ability to ingest and kill bacteria for seven hours.” Dr. Marion Nestle from his book Food Politics states, “Sugar and acid in soft drinks so easily dissolve tooth enamel.”

Each Additional Soda Increases Risk for Obesity by 1.6 times
So now we’ve got weak bones, weakened immune system, and dissolving teeth. What’s next? Weight gain! Dr. Nestle also concluded, “The relationship between soft drink consumption and body weight is so strong that researchers calculate that for each additional soda consumed, the risk of obesity increases 1.6 times.”

Children Who Drink Soda Break Bones More Easily
Our children aren’t safe, either. Dr. Nestle states, “Adolescents who consume soft drinks display a risk of bone fractures three to four-fold higher than those who do not.” Dr. William Duffy from the Naval Research Institute states, “The high sugar hides the acid. Children little realize they are drinking this strange mixture of phosphoric acid, sugar, caffeine, coloring, and flavoring matter.” Greg Critser from his book Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World states: “A joint study by Harvard University and Boston Children’s Hospital researchers in February 2001 concluded that such excess liquid calories inhibited the ability of older children to compensate at mealtime, leading to caloric imbalance and, in time, obesity.”

Diet Soda Isn’t Any Better
For those of you with a diet soda in your hands, the news isn’t any better, in fact it’s worse! Carol Simontacchi from her book The Crazy Makers: How the Food Industry Is Destroying Our Brains and Harming Our Children states, “One liter of an aspartame-sweetened beverage can produce about fifty-six milligrams of methanol. When several of these beverages are consumed in a short period of time (one day, perhaps), as much as two hundred fifty milligrams of methanol are dumped into the bloodstream, or thirty-two times the EPA limit.” So, you’re poisoning your body, too. And when it comes to saccharin, which is a noncaloric petroleum derivative estimated to be three hundred to five hundred times sweeter than sugar: “More than a dozen animal tests over the last thirty years have demonstrated the carcinogenic effects of saccharin in the bladder and other sites, particularly female reproductive organs, and in some instances at doses as low as the equivalent of one to two bottles of diet pop daily.” With diet soda, you’ve gone from high calories to poisonous levels of methanal and an increased chance of developing cancer. Not a very good trade.

Could Caffeine Jeopardize the Human Race?
Then there’s the caffeine. Jean Carper from her book Food: Your Miracle Medicine : How Food Can Prevent and Cure over 100 Symptoms and Problems states, “tests at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine by Roland R. Griffiths, MD, show caffeine withdrawal can strike people who drink a single cup of strongly brewed coffee or drink caffeinated soft drinks everyday. Further, Dr. Griffiths discovered that caffeine-withdrawal symptoms include not only headache, but also fatigue, mild depression, muscle pain and stiffness, flu-like feelings, nausea and vomiting. And for women: “Those consuming at least one cup of a caffeine-containing beverage per day, such as coffee, tea or soft drinks, were more prone to PMS. And the more caffeine they consumed, the more severe their PMS symptoms.” Caffeine causes withdrawal with symptoms mimicking a flu and for women it makes PMS even worse. But could caffeine really jeopardize the future of the human race? Yes! “A study on the relationship between caffeine and fertility found that… just one caffeinated soft drink per day was associated with a reduced monthly chance of conception of 50 percent.”

If All That Wasn’t Enough Watch Out for a Asthma and a Rash
And finally there’s the preservative used in soda. Dr. Marcia Zimmerman, author of The A.D.D. Nutrition Solution : A Drug-Free 30 Day Plan states, “Sodium benzoate Sodium benzoate is used as a preservative (microbial control) in foods, including soft drinks, fruit juices, margarine, confections, pickles, and jams. Sodium preservatives add sodium to the diet and reduce the availability of potassium. Some reported reactions to sodium benzoate include recurring urticaria (rash), asthma, and eczema.”


I haven't had a pop since last Wednesday, it was our anniversary and I had a Diet Coke and decided it would be my last. Plus, I figured it would be a good marker to keep track of how long I have gone without drinking pop.  I know this isn't going to be easy, it's already been hard. But, my body deserves a break.

What about you? Any of you non-pop drinkers?


Miss Chelsea said...

I stopped drinking soda (hah - weirdo here!) about 8 years ago... I did it for no reason other than 'I wonder how long I can go without drinking it'. Now when I look at a can I'm like 'yuck that doesn't even sound good'

Good luck!

Katie said...

haha I'm laughing so hard because I had the SAME problem in high school with Mt Dew! When I would go out to eat I would literally suck down 3 or 4 glasses before our meal even came out. I was addicted and my Dad stopped paying for it for me and decided it was time to stop the nonsense so I gave up pop in general. I haven't gone back and it's sooo true...when you finally cut it out, your body will feel so much better and you won't miss it. I am not tempted by pop at all nowadays and never crave it! Let me know how you do :)

Ashley said...

I am your newest follower ;)

ty said...

This is a GREAT idea ... my sister's best friend had the same problem with Diet Mountain Dew, and she thinks it contributed to her having migraines now. I try to keep my intake to one or so a week, but I'll cheat sometimes :)

brynn. said...

you can do it! good luck :)

Aubrey S. said...

I rarely drink soda. It's just so bad for you, especially diet.

Caroline said...

I gave up soda with sugar 5 years ago and switched to diet. I know that was a struggle. I just am not ready to give up my diet coke with limes just yet. Although, I have cut back significantly. Hope you aren't feeling too bad.

KP said...

I drink soda/pop only occasionally. I definitely love a fountain Coke from time to time but in general I never drink soda at home. And since I rarely eat out, then the soda drinking almost never happens. :-)

ajs {of MN} said...

i often go in spurts, but when i am not drinking 'pop' i often find myself craving not the actual drink itself or the taste (am LOVE dr pepper) but the carbonation... i love it! do you remember Clearly Canadian at all??... i LOVED that too!! anyway, i now constantly crave milk or ice cold water with being in the midst of another no pop binge ;)

Ann-Jennifer said...

Good for you! I'm sure you'll feel better. I gave up pop 4 years ago and honestly I don't miss it at all. My drinks of choice are now water and Vitamin Water with of course a cup of coffee in the morning and one at night.

And for the record, I'm right there with you on the whole pop/soda thing. I'm a native Kansan but live in NJ-I always get the side glance when I call it pop here. HA HA!

Jessica said...

My hubby drinks at least one Diet Dr Pepper each day, I've read these facts to him before but to no avail. Hope you can kick the habit!

I do drink maybe one or two a week so I'm not much better. Now coffee?! That's my drink. One a day... not good :/

Miss K said...

I have cut back significantly on soda and now whenever I do have one, I feel SO bloated from the carbonation I'm uncomfortable. I never felt that way before when I was having one everyday though.

Growing up I always called it "pop" too, but ever since moving to CA no one knew what I was talking about so I've unfortunately and unconsciously made the switch to "soda". I also was never allowed to have caffeine as a child so if I ever do have a coke I'm up for hours.

Desiree said...

Pop is a total Midwest thing! That's what I called it growing up in Kansas, but here in Texas they don't know what you're saying unless you say 'soda.'

I will have a Sprite or fountain root beer every every now and then but I've never been a soda drinker. Drew, on the other hand? That man is ADDICTED to his morning coffee and his Diet Coke! It worries me so much, thinking about what he's doing to his insides.

I'm totally forwarding this post to him!

jojo said...

Okay I'm never drinking soda again! oh and I think it's adorable you call it pop :-)

Ashley Paige said...

how are you feeling post pop?? thanks for posting this! i stopped drinking my requisite one classic coke per day two weeks ago and every day im like.."wait, do i want it? just one sip?" but ive taken to drinking perrier with fruit juice mixed in and realized that it's usually just the carbonation that im craving! im pretty sure after reading your post, i wont ever touch a coke again! woof!