Kicking My Addiction

Something that I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned on this blog before, is the fact that I’m addicted to soda.  Now, I don’t mean that in some flippant way, I mean it literally.  It’s not as bad as many other addictions, but when I don’t have soda for about twenty four hours, I start to get severe headaches, partly it is the caffeine, but I also assume it’s the sugar.

Right now, I’m in the middle of trying to quit soda.  I have successfully kicked the habit for months at a time, probably 5 times over the last six or seven years, once going nearly a whole year.  This time, I haven’t been doing it cold turkey, which I think has been causing me some problems.

You see, when it comes to soda, I have two drinks of choice, Mountain Dew (typically the blue ‘Voltage’ flavor, but really any Dew will do) and Coke (I prefer Vanilla, but Cherry is great, and regular will do).  This time, I’ve been avoiding those drinks, and thinking that having lesser sodas would help curb the headaches and fatigue that I feel without it.  So I have drank quite a bit of Sprite, and my work supplies me with all the Cheerwine (imagine a deliciously sweet soda version of cough syrup).  Yesterday, I had a Boylan Cola, with real cane sugar, and thought ‘well at least it’s real sugar.’  I have been using these justification tactics for a few weeks now, and the result has been lesser withdrawal symptoms spread out over a longer time frame.

In addition to trying to quit soda, I have increased my water consumption, which honestly is difficult, because I don’t like drinking water, but I’m finally starting to get to the point where it doesn’t seem like a chore anymore.

So I think that, starting tonight, I’m going cold-turkey altogether.  It will be a rough few days, but then it will be over.  At that point, the key is to not have soda when I’m out and about.  That is how I get pulled back in every time.  You know when someone says, “I stopped drinking soda six months ago, and now if I even have a sip, I can’t stand the taste?”  I don’t have that problem.  If I go six months without, and then have a sip of Coke, or Mountain Dew, it is the greatest taste I have ever had upon my tongue.  I’m not exaggerating.  One bottle of ‘Voltage’ after months of abstaining, and I will be buying a case, or a two liter.

I know this about myself, and this time I have to do better.  I don’t want the health issues that come with it, and so I am going to quit, and stay off of it for real.  If not, I’m going to write about it the first day I break this vow, and I hope you all will hold me accountable.

Have you quit an addiction?  What was it?  What method did you find to be the most helpful?  Let me know in the comments below.

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