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Goodbye Diet Soda

The bottle of caramel colored fizzy stuff known as Diet Coke is no longer a part of my life.

Okay, let’s wait on those who know me well to pick themselves up off the floor before I continue…

Yeah, I kicked the habit.  F-I-N-A-L-L-Y!

My association with the beloved bubbly goes back more than two decades to my college years at UGA when I was known in my business classes as Teresa with the Tab. Diet soda was my one vice for a long, long time.  Over the years, I changed my beverage of choice to Diet Coke and it remained a permanent fixture in my life until a month ago.

I knew it wasn’t healthy to drink the 2 liters+ a day I was guzzling.  Cutting back never worked for very long and going cold turkey turned me into a mean, wicked, wicked witch.  At the 36 hour mark of no Diet Coke, I was heading to the convenience store for a double shot of Diet Coke like a junkie looking for a fix.  Basically, that’s what it was.

What was different this time?  I thank the mom of Alisha & Alex – two of my READers – that’s who.  Their mom is an internal medicine physician who shared how she coaches her patients through the process. Cutting back is done in two week increments until gradually you give up the Diet Coke completely.  I cut my consumption in half for two weeks, then down to one quarter of my original consumption for two more weeks.

I enjoyed my last Diet Coke on Sunday morning.  Monday was okay.  Tuesday, I woke up with a headache and craving for Diet Coke so bad that I almost headed to the store…but I had already passed the 36 hour mark and was determined to suck it up as long as possible.  The past 24 hours have not been fun with a monster headache that wouldn’t quit, insane cravings for Diet Coke, lethargy, brain fog and the wicked, wicked, wicked witch making her reappearance.   People who kicked the habit reported it took 3-5 days before they began to feel better.  It’s right at day 4 and I’m starting to feel human again.

I took Excedrin migraine (with the caffeine) that finally dulled the pain enough so I could function.  I treated myself to a small chai tea latte from Starbuck’s this morning.  Unsweetened iced tea with lemon and lime is my new drink of choice.  I still don’t like water, but I am learning to drink it.

Since cutting back on Diet Coke and eventually eliminating it, I have slept better, endured no lower back pain (kidneys telling me whoa, girl!), and have experienced no bloating, heartburn or gas.  I understand it will take a couple of weeks to feel *normal* again and be back to my usual energy levels.  It’ll be a couple of months before all of the aspartame and other yucky stuff works its way out of my system.  A FB friend posted the following picture that kind of says it all to me:

Image

Next up is attacking the extra weight.  Here’s to a healthy, happy 2013.

2 thoughts on “Goodbye Diet Soda

  1. I have given up Diet Coke more than once, only to gradually start drinking it again; I like it. So good luck to you. Please report back at regular intervals. Maybe we/I will be inspired to try again. Wishing you a healthier year.

  2. Debra, I have tried many, many times before to quit. I adore Diet Coke. However, I am certain it will stick this time as the fizzy stuff was really starting to bother my teeth – even swilling it through a straw. However, I don’t rule out the occasional frozen coke/cherry slushy in warm weather. 🙂

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