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Kicking the Habit: Soda Alternatives

There are times when an ice-cold soda just tastes good and as a special treat every now and then it isn’t so bad. The problem is most people who drink soda drink it regularly and that can cause serious health problems. Higher risks of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and colorectal cancer have all been associated with heavy soda consumption as well as obesity. Research has also shown soda can drastically affect your sweet cravings by dulling your sensitivity to sweet tastes. This in turn causes you to consume even more sugary drinks and food than you did before.

Unfortunately, soda can be very addicting and hard to break the habit of drinking. Water is hands down your best regular consumption liquid but can be a bit boring. Especially if you are used to soda. However, we have scoured the internet for the healthiest options you can swap soda out for to ease out of your habit for good.

The Best Soda Alternatives

  • Flavored water. If plain old water is boring to you, try infusing it with some of your favorite fruit flavors. All you have to do is add slices of oranges, lemons, watermelon, limes, cucumber, mint or whatever else tickles your fancy into a pitcher of ice-cold water and let it sit. After a few hours you will have water that is naturally flavored with none of the harmful sugar or chemicals that soda presents.

  • Coconut water. Not to be confused with coconut milk, which is its own separate entity, coconut water is a natural source of vitamins, minerals and electrolytes. Coconut water is roughly 94% water but with a little more flavor kick. It is also low on sugar (12 grams per cup) just make sure you buy it unsweetened to get the full health benefits.

  • Seltzer water. If it is all about the bubbles for you seltzer water is a great way to go. It is water and has all the benefits and nutritional value of water but with the fizz that soda has. You can also dress your seltzer up with a little fresh fruit juice, or even turn it into a healthier version of that lemon-lime soda you loved sipping on.

  • Teas- hot, cold or otherwise. Tea is a great option with plenty of flavors to choose from that can be sipped on hot or cold. Green tea has proven to be particularly potent in reducing the risk of several different cancers, heart disease, obesity, liver disease and type 2 diabetes. Looking for a little sweetness? Adding a hint of honey will do the trick. Need bubbles in your life? Kombucha might be your new obsession.

  • Red wine. This one needs to be consumed moderately and at appropriate times. (Probably not a great idea during work hours.) However, red wine is a great substitute for those who do drink and have gravitated toward soda as a mixer for their hard liquor of choice in the past. When consumed in appropriate amounts red wine can have significant health benefits for your heart and preventing certain types of cancers.

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