I’m Quitting

30 Oct

This is one of my loves.

But our love is not a two-way street. He’s not so good for me, this love. In fact, he may very well be hurting me. But I sure do hate to give him up.

Barry sent me a link to a Prevent magazine article yesterday that reminded me how bad sodas, and even diet sodas, are for my body. He didn’t do it in a finger-pointing-you-should-really-stop-drinking-these-things way, but more of a wow-just-wow kind of way. I’ve always been able to “rationalize” my love by convincing myself there are as many studies showing diet sodas and artificial sweeteners are not harmful as there are ones that prove their harmful effects. But this article kind of put it right in my face, and connected the harmful effects to things that really matter to me – like my kidneys. Have mercy.

Here are the most alarming of the seven ways diet sodas are not kind to your body:

  • Drinking two diet sodas a day doubles the risk of declining kidney function
  • Drinking one diet soda a day increased the risk of metabolic syndrome (things like belly fat & high cholesterol) by 34%
  • Drinking two diet sodas a day led to a 500% increase in waistlines because the artificial sweeteners interfere with the body’s ability to regulate calorie intake
  • The chemicals in diet soda such as sodium benzoate or potassium benzoate can cause severe enough cell damage to DNA to inactivate it
  • Diet sodas are very acidic and can cause major damage to your teeth and gums

I’ve talked about the negative effects of artificial sweeteners before, and even acknowledged I need to give up diet soda, but I never really, truly cared to. Yet, each time I drank one, the voice in my head would tell me not to drink it.

So starting today, I’m giving them up for a week. In fact, I had one yesterday morning and then did not have another sip after reading that stupid um, I mean, enlightening article. Giving it up for a week is a small goal, but saying I’m giving it up for good seems so huge – almost unattainable. So I need to do it one week at a time for now.

Anyone else have something they want to give up for a week? Are you consuming something you know is not good for your body, but you’ve been hesitant to quit? Tell me what it is and we’ll encourage each other!

The Quitter


19 Responses to “I’m Quitting”

  1. The Savvy Sister October 30, 2012 at 7:26 am #

    I am doing the happy dance for you, because not only will you be healthier and feel better, but your memory will improve as well.
    Acidic foods and drinks, like soda also provide a safe haven for cancer cells to grow. All man made chemicals that are eaten cause this acidity as well as alcohol, coffee, and meat.

    Everyone needs to make changes at their own time, when they feel comfortable doing it. When it’s your time, you’ll know. Just as you were ready to give up your fave drink.

    Now about that cheeseburger……..

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 8:58 am #

      I knew you would like this, Susan. :) You’ll be happy to know my cheeseburger consumption is significantly down. I’ve been choosing grilled chicken sandwiches instead of a cheeseburger (most of the time). :)

  2. mainelyhopeful October 30, 2012 at 8:36 am #

    Good for you, Rachel. It’s not easy to give up something you love. I wasn’t exactly hooked on diet soda but it was part of my regular diet. Sometimes while on chemo it was all I could get down so I drank far more than I should have. I stopped pretty much cold turkey a few months ago and this past weekend I was working around, hot and dusty, and sent my husband for a cold diet coke. He brought home a 12 pack and I had two that day. I had to force myself not to drink any more. It’s like crack! Once you start… I’ve been good though ;)

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 8:58 am #

      It is like crack, isn’t it?? Proud of you for not downing the whole 12-pack this weekend! :)

  3. Julie Kendall October 30, 2012 at 9:47 am #

    I gave up soda on October 2 . It hasn’t been as bad as I thought it would be but I do occasionally crave the “burn”! I have also given up salting my food for over 6 months. It wasn’t any one big thing that made me do it. It was more God saying “don’t salt/drink this one thing and see what happens”. I never thought I could give up those two staples in my life! But I’m soooooo glad I have!

    Thanks for the info as well. I didn’t realize the diet soda’s contributed to belly fat. I just started exercising again and am curious to see how my body will respond this time when it doesn’t have to fight all the salt/soda/sweetners! :)

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 7:51 pm #

      Good for you, Julie!! I am SO proud of you for all of it, and especially the exercise part. It’s not easy, but our bodies really need that physical activity. Way to go, girl!

  4. Facing Cancer Together October 30, 2012 at 12:04 pm #

    Good luck, Rachel. Be sure to have drink alternatives on hand & nearby for when the post-quitting cravings hit. Apple juice with soda water is my favourite pop substitute. ~Catherine

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 7:51 pm #

      I’ll have to try that, Catherine – apple juice and soda water sounds good. I drank a ton of water today – I even surprised myself with how much. :)

  5. Tranquil Moments Photography October 30, 2012 at 2:00 pm #

    I dearly love Diet Pepsi, must be in a can AND cold. Now reading your article what stood out for me was “◦Drinking one diet soda a day increased the risk of metabolic syndrome (things like belly fat & high cholesterol) by 34%”…..and I was blaming it all on menopause. Hmmmmm….good luck Rachel, hope you can “kick the habit” :)

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 7:52 pm #

      I actually like mine over ice. :) Or at least, I used to. haha!

  6. Clanmother October 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm #

    I always liked to be a “Pepper” until I found that water was my real friend.

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 7:53 pm #

      Water is definitely a better friend than DP. Doesn’t taste as good, but it’s much more kind to our bodies. :)

  7. Cancer Warrior October 30, 2012 at 3:39 pm #

    I quit my “coke” habit in January and replaced it with lemon water. I missed it at first, but not anymore. Good luck!

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 7:53 pm #

      I remembered you saying you had given up soda earlier this year and am encouraged by your success with it! Hope you are doing well, Florence.

  8. Elizabeth Thomas October 30, 2012 at 4:03 pm #

    Oh Rachel! I always try to follow your lead and do good things, grow..etc. Okay, I love Diet Dr. Pepper and do not even want to admit how many a day I may drink. I had one this morning. But haven’t had a soda since. So for the rest of this week. Just one in the morning. And then, I will stop too. We can do this! I hope. ;)

    • rachturner October 30, 2012 at 7:54 pm #

      You’re right, Elizabeth – we CAN do this! Proud of you for cutting back – even that is a good step. Love you, girl.

  9. Andrew October 31, 2012 at 5:07 am #

    I have also largely cut off sodas, reduced my red meat intake, and generally eat more healthily. Good for you, as changing habits and likes is not easy.

    • rachturner October 31, 2012 at 4:10 pm #

      Thanks, Andrew, and good for you! Hope you are well.

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