Kicking the Pop Habit: 1 Year later

198 comments

"Watch your thoughts; they become words.
Watch your words; they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits.
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; it becomes your destiny."
~Lao-Tze

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If you are a new reader, you may not know that just over 1 year ago, Eric decided to eliminate pop from his diet.

Since he was a young boy, he was hooked on pop, specifically Coke. During university, he often drank up to 6 cans a day as a way to stay awake during late nights. He cut back after university, but he still drank 2-3 cans of Coke during the work day to give him a boost.

Back in 2008, Eric wanted nothing more than to have his picture taken beside this retro Coke truck in Istanbul!

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If you would have asked him back then if he would ever give up pop, he would have laughed in your face!

But he suffered from constant sugar cravings, migraines, fatigue, cavities, and more which he believed were mostly due to the large amount of pop he consumed each day. He knew that something needed to change, but he didn’t quite know how to make the change. Or if he could succeed.

When we vacationed to Florida last March, Eric decided to drink pure fruit juice to satisfy his cravings instead of relying on pop. The sunny, warm weather and delicious fresh fruits and vegetables made it relatively easy for him to focus on drinking natural juices and smoothies while on vacation. It was also during this time that he decided to give up his favourite cereal that contained High Fructose Corn Syrup, instead opting for an organic cereal by Nature’s Path. It took a couple bowls to get used to, but after he did, he said it was a really easy switch. Now he eats Nature’s Path Spelt cereal and sprinkles some raisins and chia seeds on top. I never thought I would see the day!

He also discovered that he really loves drinking juice and smoothies and felt more energized than ever.

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This vacation was truly worth its weight in GOLD health!

Inspired by how great he felt while away, he decided to stick with his new eating plan. He drank 100% pure juice, tea, or smoothies when he craved pop and he also kept buying organic cereals free of HFCS.

And then he said something that I never thought I would hear come out of his mouth…

‘Ange, I have decided to completely cut out pop from my diet….for good.’

I was so proud of him at that moment because I know how difficult it would be for him. I could tell that he was a bit scared, but he was also very proud of his accomplishments, now 2 weeks without pop. With each day, he gained momentum, but the road wasn’t always a smooth one!

When Eric told some coworkers that he was cutting out pop from his diet, he got a lot of flack and teasing for it (in addition to his healthier eating in general) and this made it difficult for him, but the resistance from others actually made him want to stick to his guns even more! He was more convinced than ever that this choice was the right one for him. Whenever someone scoffed at him for passing up pop or junk food, it only made him more determined to stick with it. And he has also become very well versed with comebacks. ;)

Today, we celebrate Eric being 100% free of ALL POP for 1 year! Congrats Eric!

I asked Eric to comment on his journey over the past year, so you can hear it straight from the man himself.

We did a little Q & A together last night…

How did you do it?

Cold Turkey. :)  With lots of support from Ange.

Did you ever feel tempted to cheat, if so how did you overcome it?

Not really tempted to “cheat”, but there were times after doing work outside (in the yard) when I craved a Coke.  I usually would try to get my fix through something else. Originally, I thought it was the caffeine that I craved, so I would try to drink Tea, but then I realized that didn’t really help much. I figured out that it is the sugar that I craved so I would drink a juice instead.  While juices aren’t much better in terms of sugar, I would make sure there was no HFCS/glucose fructose in it, and at least this way I’m having a more natural sugar source. I also realized that it is very difficult to find juice without HFCS/glucose fructose hiding in it. Sometimes, the restaurant or café I go to for lunch doesn’t have any options at all. I tend to look for 100% pure apple juice and I can find it at places like Subway. I would guess that 98% of the juices for sale have HFCS/glucose fructose in them.

Was it as difficult as you thought to kick your pop habit?

I actually didn’t think it would be that hard, but it was fairly difficult.  Mostly from peer pressure.  Co-workers constantly try to give me pop and they place them on my desk in front of me. Sometimes they would hide cans of Coke in our house too.  Most of my co-workers don’t see the need to eat healthy so it is difficult on me when I am the only one out of the group who wants to eat better.

Do you think you will ever go back to drinking pop?

No.  I’m tempted to get a rum/coke sometimes for a drink when we go out as I used to have it as an alternative to beer every once in a while, but I feel like I would be cheating so I don’t even do that.

How do you feel now?

It took quite a while to feel any difference. While drinking coke I would get the 2 or 3pm slump, but to get over it I used to drink even more coke (it’s a vicious cycle).  After a few months of not drinking coke (and I think it took at least 3 months to feel this way), the 2 or 3pm slump wasn’t nearly as bad.  Sure, every once in a while I’m tired in the afternoon, but nothing even close to what I was back then.  I also don’t drink juice as much as I did when I first quit drinking coke, so now I’m probably a little lower in sugar intake. I don’t get the highs and lows as much as I used to. The juice was a good substitute initially, but I find I don’t ‘need’ it as much anymore. I also lost about 10 pounds which was an added bonus.

Any final words to those people out there who want to kick a bad habit?

Definitely go for it! You may think it is such a small change and it may take time to notice anything, but it will make a huge difference in your life. I found that by making this healthy change in my life, I was inspired to make other changes in my life that I never expected. One healthy change gives you momentum for other healthy changes. When I eliminated pop my coworkers stopped drinking it as frequently too. While my coworkers would argue that it had nothing to do with me, I think healthy changes rub off on other people overtime, even without asking anyone to change.

 

We made one of his favourite smoothie combos to celebrate. :)

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Strawberry Banana Chai Smoothie

Yield: 2 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 3/4 cup frozen strawberries
  • 2 cups non-dairy milk
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 scoop Vega Vanilla Chai protein powder

 

Serving Suggestion: Close your eyes, sit in front of a space heater, and pretend you are in Florida. ;)

 

Have you ever made a healthy change in your lifestyle? If so, what was it and how did you do it? Did you have any peer pressure or resistance from other people?

Or are there any changes that you want to make in your lifestyle this Spring?

Eric’s 1 year anniversary has encouraged me to question what positive change I could make in my own life this Spring. Yesterday, I decided to bring out my juicer and start juicing a few times a week again. We juiced a lot last summer and felt amazing, so I would really like to start this up again. Spring is always a great time to make a new change!

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{ 198 comments… read them below or add one }

1 J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric!! That’s fantastic.

I have a similar story: My husband was also addicted to soda (Coca-Cola!) his entire life. He drank 6-10 cans a day or more; some days, that’s ALL he consumed calorie-wise! :shock: His whole family drinks it all throughout the day, and he had been talking about giving it up, but when we visited his family last spring, he saw their total dependence on it and how generally unhealthy they are, so shortly after he gave it up!! :D Cold turkey! He still drinks ginger ale and root beer on occasion, usually when we eat out, but he’s reduced his consumption by at least 90-95%. His one-year Coke-free anniversary is almost here, so proud of him!

And my husband also drinks a lot more 100% fruit juice. Still, not THE best choice of calories, but better than soda, especially because he doesn’t have much of an appetite and needs some kind of caloric intake. :)

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2 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Wow congrats to your husband!!!

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3 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is March 22, 2011

That is so exciting! Congrats to Eric!

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4 Stacy @ Every Little Thing March 22, 2011

I switched from regular to diet pop many years ago but have been addicted to Diet Pepsi ever since (specifically Diet Cherry Pepsi…). It stands in the face of all the healthy eating I blog about daily, and I hate it! All those chemicals and artificial sweeteners…yuck.

So I decided to try and kick the habit this Lent, and so far so good! It’s difficult. It’s not the caffeine for me, but the carbonation. I love that “kick” that carbonation gives you! To replace it, I drink a can of LaCroix (all natural carbonated water) and it helps. It’s been a few weeks now and I do still crave it on a warm afternoon, but I’m getting there. I’ve been drinking a lot more iced tea (unsweetened of course), WATER, and sparkling water.

I felt like a hypocrite for so long, blogging about eating kale and almonds while chugging a Diet Pepsi. Now I feel a lot more true to myself and my lifestyle!

Great post…good for Eric!

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5 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Way to go! :) I have heard people say they miss the carbonation, but Eric was never crazy about it. I think people get hooked on it for different reasons and finding a replacement is key!

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6 Julie @ Honey B. Nutrition March 22, 2011

Good for him!! My husband did the same just over a year ago! He has had an irregular heartbeat for almost ten years and suddenly it’s back to normal! Coincidence? I doubt it!

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7 Emily March 22, 2011

Congratulations Eric!! My biggest things to kick in my life have been fried food, dairy, and artificial sweetners; all of which I am so much happier and healthier without :)

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8 Katie March 22, 2011

Congratulations to your husband! That’s awesome. I stopped drinking all pop when I got pregnant two years ago and it definitely wasn’t easy! I was very addicted to Diet Coke.

Is that a glass straw in your smoothie? If so, how do you like them? I drink a lot of smoothies and was thinking about getting some.

I’m a new reader and love your blog. :) Your pictures are all amazing. Thanks for such great posts!!!

Katie

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9 Jess@atasteofconfidence March 22, 2011

Congrats Eric! I know how hard this is: I gave up pop (mostly diet) a year and a half ago. I feel SO much better without it!

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10 Maryea @ Happy Healthy Mama March 22, 2011

Way to go, Eric! This is such an encouraging story.

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11 Leanne March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric!

I gave up my loooove, Orange Pekoe tea for lent & have switched to drinking green tea. I know it doesn’t seem like much but I have become quite addicted to my black tea in the last couple years, usually having 3-4 big cups in the morning before work! I’ve also become dependent on the caffeine to keep me awake & wanted to kick this habbit to the curb!

I’ve wanted to do this for awhile because my dentist said that dark tea stains your teeth (I want nice pearly whites for my wedding!).

At first I found it very hard to enjoy green tea, but I must say that I’m doing fantastic now. I’m happy that I’m not so dependent on tea to give me that boost of energy, and I actually like the taste of green tea now.

A simple switch, but I feel like it’s healthier for me!

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12 Amy March 22, 2011

I’ve received a lot of comments since going vegetarian/vegan almost 4 years ago, but I know that those people are simply uneducated and believe in the Canada Food Guide, so it’s really easy to brush it off.

I’m the one who cooks supper at home, and my dad often makes jokes when talking to certain other people, saying that he’s so weak and needs his meat. lol He does it to be funny – I don’t think he really cares that much, and I still cook some sort of meat every couple weeks for him. Saturday, my grandmother called and said that they were leaving on vacation and that they had some ground turkey for him if he wanted it. He RAN around the corner and down the road to their house, just to make us laugh. I’m just thankful he didn’t go arms flailing like he said he would. LOL

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13 Amy March 22, 2011

Shoot, I hit submit without saying

CONGRATS, Eric!

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14 Lisa Fine March 22, 2011

Congratulations, Eric!

My partner used to drink at least two bottles of Diet Coke a day, but as he learned more about healthy eating, he switched over to seltzer, and realized that he was craving a cold, bubbly drink, and not necessarily the caffeine or sweetness.

He’ll still enjoy a soda every few weeks or so, but loves his seltzer and sparkling water. He feels healthier and less groggy, too.

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15 Angela @ MyPinkyToes March 22, 2011

I’m with Stacy in this one, but my unhealthy food habit was candy (if you call that a food)! I felt like a hypocrite trying to live a healthy lifestyle all while being addicted to candy! So, my New Year’s resolution this year was to run my first half marathon and also to give up candy. I gave it up cold turkey, and I run my first half marathon in a few weeks! Now that I don’t eat it anymore, my body doesn’t even crave it. Instead I will crave fresh fruit…so good! Now I am feeling stronger than ever and I feel like I could do a whole marathon someday! Have you done a full marathon before?

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16 Colleen March 22, 2011

Giving up soda is so hard! I find I get caught in an on-again/off-again with it, but after a while, I realized my favorite part was the carbonation (like Eric I tried subbing caffeine or sweetness, but it didn’t seem to cut it!)

I’ve been following OSG for a little over 6 months now, and it’s helped me (inspired me) to make the change to somewhere between vegan & vegetarian, so I want to give you a big heart-felt thank-you, Angela! [Note: My non-vege family has devoured everything I’ve made from your blog.] I’m really interested to hear about juicing too :-) This Spring feels ripe with opportunity.

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17 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Thank you Colleen!

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18 kell March 22, 2011

congrats to Eric, what a huge accomplishment!!!
ps. i love that you call it ‘pop’ :)

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19 Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat March 22, 2011

Congratulations Eric! I remember when you posted a little while ago Ange, about how it had been 6 months or something since Eric had kicked the habit.. I can’t believe it’s now a full year!!!
This spring, I’m making a conscious effort to (again) reduce the amount of artificial sweetener in my diet. I’m a gum-a-holic, but I also get into the habit of drinking Crystal Light and other similar drinks to try to get more water. I’m hoping with the warmer weather coming that I’ll actually feel thirstier (in the winter I never feel like drinking plain, cold water). I’ve tried giving up artificial sweeteners before but I keep coming back, so hopefully 2011 will be the year I do it for good! :)

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20 Sarah March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric! His commitment to health and staying away from pop is really impressive. Even more so, I love that link between your good example rubbing off on him, and then his good example rubbing off on his coworkers.

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21 Anna @ Newlywed, Newly Veg March 22, 2011

So amazing!!! Congrats to Eric for making this change and, more importantly– making it STICK!

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22 Caitlin @ The Caitie Experiment March 22, 2011

Congratulations, Eric!! Andrew is using Lent as his motivation for trying to kick his soda habit this year — two weeks in and nary a drop (for the religious aspect, he’s donating all the money he is saving to charity)! I feel terrible when I inadvertently tempt him (which isn’t often, since I rarely drink soda), but he is sticking to it and is excited to see if he feels any different. Thanks to Eric for answering your questions about his experience; now I have some info to pass along (especially the part about it taking awhile to feel the difference!). Between the two of us (him=soda, me=meat), our grocery bill is LOVING Lent this year, so those charities are going to end up winning big time in the end!

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23 Julie @ Shining From Within March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! I’d drink that smoothie over soda ANY day of the week! I cut out soda about 2-3 years ago and NEVER looked back. It does nothing for me.

I think one habit I’d like to get back into is juicing too! Also to try and cut back on sweets ;)

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24 Eates-a-Lot March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric!

I gave up Coke for Lent about 8 years ago…. best decision I ever made. I totally stopped for 40 days and I haven’t gone back since. I do drink it every once in a while. But I rarely crave it. I even drink ‘Jack and Sprite’ and not coke.

If you need anytype of ‘sugar’ fix.. I drink Benefiber in the morning (I don’t have a gallbladder)
and I noticed that if I drink it, my cravings for sweets are gone for the rest of the day.. and it has fiber for you!

Best wishes!

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25 jenny March 22, 2011

I went 6 years without soda at all, thanks to my mom. She saw how much my sister and I drank soda when she bought it,.so.she started buying water. Never looked back.
I was very proud when my boyfriend gave up drinking soda so much. Now we only drink organic root beer with our Friday dinner. We were desperate and had a sprite out once and the carboration was so bad, we had to throw it away!
I teared up a little when I saw Dustin reading labels for HFCS. And yesterday he dipped his cookies in almond milk. It was a beautiful sight to see :-)
AND CONGRATS TO ERIC!! I think he inspired me.to give up rum and coke too.

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26 Lauren at Keep It Sweet March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! I imagine that cutting anything from your diet that you consume so regularly would be really hard. It is great that he feels so much better now!

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27 Natalie @ Will Jog For Food March 22, 2011

Congratulations Eric! It must be so hard to kick something cold turkey….but it can’t be bad going from Soda to Smoothies ;)

Were you guys in Ft Lauderdale in that picture?? Looks like you’re right next to my house! hehehe

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28 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Yes we were :)

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29 Jennifer March 22, 2011

Congratulations, Eric! That is super great! Huzzah for you!

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30 CathyK March 22, 2011

i DO remember last year when eric gave up coke! WAY TO GO, eric!
i really enjoyed the q & a, above, angela – thanks for sharing, both of you.
inspired by eric, in part, i stopped diet coke last spring. over the past year, i’ve been on again, off again (currently on again, one diet coke every 1-2 days – reduced a lot, at least)…i think i am going to print out this post as motivation to stop FOR GOOD, though.
thanks so much for the coke update, ang!

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31 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

nice work Cathy!

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32 CathyK March 22, 2011

thanks, angela!
update: i DID just pour my last three pops down the drain, and i have printed out your post from today. that’s it!

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33 Christina March 22, 2011

Ah, congrats Eric! So awesome! What an awesome post.

I did the same thing about a year ago and it has inspired me to make healthier choices as well! Whenever I drank soda, I always felt so sluggish and bloated. Even though I drank it to quench my thirst, it always made me thirstier. Drinking liquid sugar was doing absolutely nothing for my health so I decided to cut it out too! It was incredibly hard and my friends always tried to tempt me but I was able to last a year without drinking a soda and quite frankly, I have no desire to even take a sip.

It’s a very hard thing to give up but it feels so good once you do! :) Those strawberry banana chai smoothies look so good!

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34 Leah (The Kind Weight Watcher) March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric for kicking the coke habit for an entire year!

I’ve made so many healthy changes in the last two years.

* First, I joined Weight Watchers in May of 2009.
* Then I quit smoking in July 2009.
* I began learning to enjoy exercise some time in late ’09 (not sure exactly when this clicked, but it was around then).
* I became vegetarian in 2010, went full-out vegan on April 13, 2010
* started my own healthy living blog!!!
* I’ve lost 70 pounds since beginning my weight loss in May ’09
* I’m slowly weaning myself off of Weight Watchers and becoming an intuitive eater who focuses on mostly whole foods (this is largely inspired by you, Ange! Thanks.)
* I recovered from eating disorders (anorexia, recovery, anorexia again, recovery, binge-eating, Weight Watchers/recovery) which I have suffered with since I was 19.

Needless to say, I’m sooooooooo proud of myself! I am looking forward to each new goal reached, and am happy to be the healthiest I’ve ever been.

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35 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Wow congrats!!!!!!!!

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36 Leah (The Kind Weight Watcher) March 22, 2011

Thanks. :-)

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37 AGS March 22, 2011

I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoy hearing about others’ success. It’s like a little kick of upbeat energy in the middle of the day. I found that when I achieved moving from monitoring calories/nutritional goals (which is usually a necessary step for most folks — so I have no problem with it), to finally working to just eat the best foods intuitively and with hunger cues that I felt I was really about the happiest I had ever been with regard to me+food. So good luck with that!!

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38 jenna March 22, 2011

congrats eric!!! that is awesome! I think its awful erics friends/coworkers teased him instead of fully supporting him. I see that alot at work. people laugh or get ‘grossed’ out when they see people eating healthy yet they come in with a huge soda and fast food sandwich for breakfast, then a few hours later complain of being tired and not feeling well….duh?? I will never forget a coworker almost dying when she saw my green moster on my desk one morning!! LOL LOL she totally freaked out and i wanted to say you want me to bring you one tomorrow? hee hee hee!!

on the green monster note, i asked my daughter this morning if she wanted some of the strawb/banana smoothie i was making and she came out and wrinkled up her nose “NO. I only like the green ones!!!” moooohahahhahhahahaha!! Maybe we will be serving green monster smoothies at her next bday! ;)

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39 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

haha that’s cute!

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40 Chelsea March 22, 2011

Congrats!

P.S. As a native Western New Yorker living in NYC, I appreciate when someone says pop instead of soda!

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41 Katie March 22, 2011

What kind of juicer do you have? I was thinking of investing in one this spring. :) It gets expensive buying fresh juice at the organic store!

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42 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

I have a Breville Fountain Plus :)

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43 Nicole P March 22, 2011

what do you drink throughout the day? will you either let me know, or add it ino a post? i am trying to not drink soda or hfcs, but what else is there except water and tea? i don’t have a juicer, and much of the juices you buy have so much sugar, it’s ridiculous.

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44 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

He drinks tea, 100% pure juice or water throughout the day.

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45 AGS March 22, 2011

My husband and I drink a lot of homemade iced tea in the summer. My favorite, though, is simply to have regular seltzer water, with a generous splash of orange juice (which really is one the cheapest juices on the market — and easy to find one that isn’t a juice “drink”, but actually 100% juice). Give it a try.

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46 Nicole P March 22, 2011

i will, thank you!

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47 Lisa March 22, 2011

Try making pitchers of water with cucumber slices, strawberries/mint, orange slices, lemon slices. Pretend you are at a spa!! In the summer I also love iced tea with a splash of pineapple juice.

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48 Jess March 22, 2011

Congrats, Eric!! I’ve mostly weened myself from pop as well (and I’m so glad you say ‘pop’, and not ‘soda’), though every once in a while I’ll have a can if it’s free…I regret it about 1/3 of the way through. :)

Coffee consumption is probably something I should consider decreasing…but I only drink it with skim or soy milk?

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49 coffeeaddict March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric! An inspiring achievement. Though I was shocked to read what a hard time his coworkers gave him. Truly rude and unthoughtful!!!! Seriously, will people ever learn to respect that we are all entitled to our own beliefs?
I’m happy to say I’ve had tremendous support and understanding from the people around me when I decided to become vegetarian.

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50 Jennifer @ keepitsimplefoods.com March 22, 2011

I love that you guys call is “pop!” That’s so cute. ;) Congrats on a job well done!

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51 Jenn from Much to My Delight March 22, 2011

That’s a really great commitment to make! May I ask if Eric lost any weight from that one change? I’ve heard of people who lost 20-30 pounds just by eliminating the 4-5 sodas they drink per day. I haven’t cut it entirely, but because I drink it so rarely, when I do it actually makes my throat burn. That can’t be good!

I’ve found that drinking sparkling water is a fantastic alternative to drinking soda because you get the health benefit of drinking water and the fizzy fun of soda/pop.

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52 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

He lost 10 pounds

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53 Jennie March 22, 2011

Will you post some of your fav juicing recipes? I just received a juicer as a Christmas gift and want to get into juicing. I would appreciate some great recipes!

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54 Andrea B. @ Vegvacious March 22, 2011

Yayyy for Eric! It’s amazing how difficult such a small change can be and what significant results you notice in the end ~ my hubby’s family are big pop drinkers and several of his aunts and uncles are now being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. Connection?? – I would say probably yes.

My goal this Spring is to eat one large salad per day. It’s combined with my effort to get healthier and more fit :-)

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55 Jillian @ Reshape Your Life March 22, 2011

Congratulations Eric!

Do ya’ll have a juicer? I have one and I would never even think about buying juice at a store anymore. Then you could juice all of your own fruit and vegetable juice and not have any added sugar. :)

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56 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

yes we do :)

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57 Liz March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric! I was just like him only with diet coke and diet soda. It was such a part of my identity (I was always known for sucking down the stuff) that I thought I could never give it up. With the exception of one or two slipups, I’ve gone without any artificially sweetened beverages or soda for about 4 months now, and think it was a great decision. I find I crave sugar a lot less and that my gums have become much healthier. Despite that these drinks did not contain actual sugar, I still had tons of withdrawal syptoms for about 2 weeks. I’ve substituted sparling water with a little bit of 100% juice when I need some bubbles and allow myself one coconut water per day for variety.

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58 Margaret March 22, 2011

I gave up soda when I was just 16 (10 years ago…hard to believe)! I gave it up for Lent and just never went back to drinking it. I was never really ADDICTED to soda, but I drank more than my fair share and it was always stocked in the fridge. I don’t miss it at all, and the smell of the syrupy stuff makes me cringe. I don’t even have it in mixed drinks — I’ve never had a rum and Coke and I’m totally OK not ever trying it! Sometimes my parents even forget that I don’t drink soda and offer me a Coke…at which point I politely remind them that I haven’t had a soda in TEN YEARS! Congrats on making it to the one-year mark!

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59 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

WOW 10 years….amazing accomplishment!

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60 R Chandra March 22, 2011

can i just say how much i adore how in your smoothie pictures, the liquid is always slightly overflowing ? it makes it all look that much more tempting :D

i never, EVER drank diet drinks until a couple years ago. i’ve recently cut them out again and i feel great about it. water, water water! i still like the occasional vitamin water zero though :)

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61 Heather (heathers dish) March 22, 2011

That’s crazy in a good way to add chai to that smoothie…yum!

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62 Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman March 22, 2011

I gave up soda about six months ago and I’m surprised how easy it was. I do get tempted, though, when I’m eating popcorn or pizza, foods I associate with Diet Coke. Still, an iced tea takes the temptation away. Now if only I could get my husband to join me…

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63 Ashley March 22, 2011

Go Eric! My boyfriend has given up soda but he hasn’t replaced it with healthy juices or anything, and he still uses it in his mixed drinks. I’ve given it up and now it tastes terrible! I can’t believe how sweet and cheically it tastes.

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64 Jensine Crandall March 22, 2011

Thanks for the excellent and timely post. Eric should be so proud of himself. I need to kick the sugar habit and this was definately inspiring. I have cut down on my Starbucks chai habit(usually one a day-eek) and I am drinking a green monster instead. I can’t believe that I actually crave them now! Thanks for helping me make a better choice!

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65 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

nice work! :)

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66 Kath (My Funny Little Life) March 22, 2011

Congratulations on 1 year poplessness! :D :D :D I almost never drink them anymore as well, and if I do, I have a sugar free one because the sugar loaden ones make me feel bad for hours. So, maybe three times a year, I have a light coke, more often I don’t crave it anymore. Instead, it’s all about smoothies now. :D I don’t have a juicer, but I drink a lot of green smoothies and tea.

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67 faith @ lovelyascharged March 22, 2011

I actually remember when you first posted about his decision last year! Is it possible for that amount of time to have flown by already? WOW!

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68 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

I know, I couldnt believe it had been a YEAR!

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69 Karen March 22, 2011

I LOVE the quote you have up at the beginning of this post! Awesomesauce:)

Congrats to Eric! I have pretty much given up soda. I never buy it for home anymore. The only time I really drink it is if we go to a restaurant and I don’t feel like a beer or glass of wine. I still do enjoy an occasional fountain soda like that! But all in all, I just don’t have a taste for it anymore.

I also invested in a Breville juicer after seeing a Matha Stewart episode on detoxing/juicing. But I haven’t used it much. :( I made a lot of lemonade last summer for my family, but I’d really like to try some healthy fresh juice combos! I can’t wait to see what juice recipes you post!

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70 Stefanie March 22, 2011

Congratulations Eric! Keep up the great work. Don’t let your coworkers bring you down. It is your health, not theirs. :)

The biggest health change I have made was going vegan and I do not regret it at all.

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71 AGS March 22, 2011

I’ve never seen soda/pop as being “evil” — more like the type of “junk” food you should just limit (which I’ve never had a problem doing — I don’t have any real craving for it). BUT, any strong positive change like that is terrific. Congrats to Eric for taking this on.

This year, I decided I would focus on getting at least one meal focused on raw/vegan food most days/week. And I’m so glad that I decided to do that. Usually my lunch is a large salad, and often my dinner is at least 50% raw foods. It takes a bit of commitment, but is a pretty easy to follow habit.

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72 Ari@ThE DiVa DiSh March 22, 2011

Good Job! my hubby is a a soda drinker, and would love to stop, but he craves it so much! lol. But I am definitely going to have him read this. Maybe it could help him out :) Thanks for sharing!

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73 Bronwyn March 22, 2011

Love it, this is pretty inspiring. It’s a good example of “small changes” that become a big change. he really only changed one thing.

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74 Tessa @ Amazing Asset March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! Although I only drink Diet Coke 1-2 times per week, it is something I am trying to completely stop consuming. It is just plain bad for you, which I know, and this story came at a perfect time to give myself a kick in the butt!
That smoothie sounds great! And it looks so pretty, pink and spring-like :)

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75 Hannah March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! This is so great. It’s amazing when you make one change and stick with it for so long. I’d like to respect myself more, body mind, and soul.

Love the smoothie-would be perfect for Valentine’s day!

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76 Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather March 22, 2011

What a great and encouraging story! When I kicked pop a few years back it was like a new found energy emerged.

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77 Meredith March 22, 2011

I can’t believe it’s been a year! Holy moly time flies. Way to go Eric!! Ange, you clearly have a gift for inspiring healthy choices in people! What an awesome influence – on all of us!

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78 vanessa March 22, 2011

CONGRATULATIONS ERIC!! What a huge accomplishment, especially in the face of such foolish teasing. It reminds me of being in high-school, and getting teased by classmates for studying and doing well in class. Like… um… WHA?!??? And I LOVE the quote at the start of the post!! Thanks for some inspiration for the day <3

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79 Marina March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric!
My bf made a lot of changes in his diet because of me, but he isn’t quite as healthy as I would like. But I think that each day, he tries to eat and life healthier, and that’s pretty awesome.

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80 Holly @ Couch Potato Athlete March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! I am actually sending this link to my husband who is a Coke drinker :( He tries to kick the habit but usually not for too long. I know he would feel better and have more energy if he didn’t rely on caffeine/soda to keep him alert.

Thanks for posting this!

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81 Emily March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric! That is really great. I think the most positive change I have made is running and race-training. It has made me realize that it is essential to properly nourish your body (with awesome vegan foods of course) in order to become stronger!

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82 Julia March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric!
It’s amazin that he went trough with the changes towards a healthier lifestyle although other have been teasing him about this.
This teasing habit is something that I have to face quite regularly, too – and I don’t even follow a strict or extreme regimen! I really don’t understand why anyone has to justify oneself because of making choices towards a healthy/healthier lifestyle. That makes me sad!

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83 shana @100lbsandcounting.com March 22, 2011

Good for him!

My bf was also addicted to soda, could drink a liter a day. He too quit cold turkey, but first tried the Dr. Oz’s 28 day soda challenge. The challenge makes you take baby steps, first be switching from regular to diet, then to sugar free, then to caffeine free etc… well, the bf hated the taste of diet so much that he somehow was just able to give it up… it has been MONTHS since his last sip of soda (Sep 2010 to be exact). Yes, he still deals with some consequences of his soda addiction (has 7 cavities! – recent dentist check up), but I’m so proud of him for his accomplishment. =) YAY! and yay for Eric too!

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84 Kate - Bread & Chocolate March 22, 2011

Thanks, Eric! I’ve been off Diet Coke for a month now. At first I missed my afternoon pick up, but now I’ve stopped craving it. In the meantime I’m enjoying more smoothies and water with lemon or lime.

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85 Sabine @ thefruitpursuit March 22, 2011

Yay Eric! Amazing story. I feel like it’s such a big ‘man’ problem, all the soda, so be happy you beat this nasty habit :)

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86 Laura @ Starting Out Fit March 22, 2011

Wow, has it already been a year???
A big congrats to Eric for sticking with it. :)

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87 Stefanie @TheNewHealthy March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric–that is so great! And it must have taken some serious willpower! :)

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88 Emily March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! My boyfriend is a pop drinker. He always asks me why he has cavities and stains on his teeth (not to mention a lot of tummy troubles), when I’ve never had a filling. I told him that I wasn’t allowed to drink a lot of pop growing up, and I rarely drink it now. I wish he would kick the habit, but he won’t listen to me; he needs to hear it for someone else, or have the will power to do it for himself. Maybe I’ll show him this post :).

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89 Lucy March 22, 2011

I have given up pop/soda/coke about 3 times and always come crawling back! I just need to kick the habit for good but why oh why does McDonalds diet coke taste so darn good (does anyone else agree with me on this?!) and why am I at McDonalds anyway?!

We recently moved right across the street from a park so my husband and I are trying to walk/run/bike several times a week. I can’t wait til May when the farmer’s market starts up!

Congrats Eric!

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90 Justeen @ Blissful Baking March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric!

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91 Michelle | GOLD-HEARTED GIRL March 22, 2011

I’m definitely aiming to make more snacks at home (read: larabars), since it’s soooo much cheaper. And fun! I have this mentality that it’s hard to find time, but when I finally get aronud to making them, I’m surprised by how quick it is!

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92 Moni'sMeals March 22, 2011

The best quote ever, I had to post it on my face book!

CONGRATS ERIC! He should feel so proud. :) It is hard to kick, soda is EVERYWHERE!

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93 Dana March 22, 2011

That is a great story.
Cpngrat’s to you Eric.

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94 Michelle March 22, 2011

That’s awesome – congrats, Eric! I used to be addicted to Diet Coke, and for years I convinced myself that, despite my otherwise healthy lifestyle, my two cans of Diet Coke a day weren’t doing me any harm. Last September 15, as an experiment, I decided to try to cut it out for 30 days, just to see if it had any effects on me. I honestly believed at the end of 30 days, I’d feel exactly the same and would go back to drinking Diet Coke once or twice a day.

Boy, was I wrong. Within 3 days I had a ton more energy, like I literally could not contain the excitement inside myself (I drink a cup of coffee in the AM, so it was never about the caffeine for me, rather about the sweetness). Since DC used to accompany my lunch and dinner, within about a week I started noticing that I was craving different things now that I was having water with meals instead of pop. No longer did I crave salty/carby things to balance out the sweetness, but I wanted more and more vegetables.

In addition to reseting my taste buds, I would also add that the first time I got my period after quitting DC was quite remarkable – I had zero PMS symptoms like I usually did. I started researching this to see what the connection was and found a lot of data to back that up. I certainly noticed a big difference in myself!

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95 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Wow amazing!

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96 Lily's Health Pad March 22, 2011

Yay Eric! I, too, have given up soda. I do drink the occasional Zevia though. Now, the cravings are totally gone! And I just feel all around better. Plus, when I simply think about drinking a soda, I immediately associate it with the headaches it used to give me.

PS- Does Eric know Subway’s bread has HFCS in it? :-(

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97 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Really? I asked before and they said no glucose-fructose (which is what HFCS is called in Canada). I hope that isnt the case!

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98 Gail March 23, 2011

I just checked their website, and in the U.S. they do have high fructose corn syrup in their bread.

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99 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 23, 2011

I’m in Canada, but Im aware that the bread contains it in the US. Can’t find any info in Canada though. I don’t get why they have to use that stuff to begin with. Wouldn’t normal sugar be enough in a bread recipe?

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100 Gail March 24, 2011

Tell me about it. You would think so, but I guess with most companies it’s only the bottom line that matters. Groan!

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101 Kelsey March 22, 2011

wow good for Eric! that’s awesome. I recently became vegan (this past fall) and love it. surprisingly, I don’t crave cheese/eggs as much as I thought I would (I was already a vegetarian). And actually cheese looks less and less appealing to me…

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102 Lean Muscle Bound Gal aka Grace March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric for accomplishing 1 year of being a pop free human being! Woohoo! I can say that there have been several things that guided me to a healthier lifestyle and yes, I’ve always received flack from peers, even to this day. Recently, going on a year now, I’ve gone from a red meat and foul eater to a pescatarian/vegetarian. I would love to eventually become a full fledged vegetarian but am having a hard time giving up seafood. My goal in the past couple months is to become an even more clean eater and am accomplishing this day by day and seeing some marvelous results.

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103 Heather @ Health, Happiness, and Hope March 22, 2011

HUGE congrats to Eric for kicking the pop habit! It times time and effort to break an old habit or implement and new one. And thank you to Eric for doing the Q&A! So great to get his own thoughts. :)

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104 Clare @ Fitting It All In March 22, 2011

I used to drink about 4 diet cokes a day, but in my quest to get healthy I cut back by incorporating more water. When I started working full time I would have coffee in the morning and then slump and reach for diet coke in the afternoon. I gave up the diet coke in favor of tea, but eventually gave up caffeine all together. I thought not having coffee would be hard, but I’ve replaced it with hot lemon water and have TONS more energy!

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105 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

I enjoy lemon water too!

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106 Amber K March 22, 2011

Congratulations Eric! That’s awesome. And I’m totally drooling over that smoothie. Definitely a great way to celebrate.

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107 Shelley March 22, 2011

Yes, I just recently celebrated my anniversary of 1 year of sobriety (on Feb 18, 2011). Giving up alcohol definitely gets you a lot of questions and some not so supportive peer pressure to start drinking again. But I had to do it for myself. I have been completely sober for over a year and with sobriety and recovery has come so many positive changes in my life that I could never have imagined! I would love to stop drinking soda as well but I really only have 1 or 2 a month so it will just continue to be my guilty pleasures!! Love your blog, you really inspire me.
Shelley

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108 Michelle @ Lifewithacrazypup March 22, 2011

That’s awesome Shelley! Congrats!

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109 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Congrats Shelley! What an accomplishment :)

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110 Laura March 22, 2011

My husband stopped drinking soda (regularly, anyway. He still has one once in a great while) a few years ago and he commented recently how much better he feels throughout the day now. It’s remarkable the difference it can make!

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111 Robin March 22, 2011

My girlfriend and I were just talking this weekend about me giving up my daily coke…I told her I could never do it…. well, this article certainly made me reconsider….hmmm…great job Eric….

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112 kate@ahealthypassion March 22, 2011

congrats to eric I love chai and have some amazing grass chai ill have to try this shake!

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113 Tiffany March 22, 2011

I really want to get my husband to stop drinking soda. He was addicted to Mountain dew (of all the sodas that has the most sugar) and I switched him over to sprite. I still wish he would drink more water and fruit juice but that is the next step. Congrats to your husband for making this change!

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114 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table March 22, 2011

Good for Eric! I quit SMOKING and now I can’t believe I ever liked it. Smoke free since Halloween of 2010. :)

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115 Roz March 22, 2011

Congratulations Eric! Breaking a bad habit is never easy.

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116 Baking 'n' Books March 22, 2011

Just what I was going to say. Bad (and old) habits die HARD.

I’ve never been a pop person but sometimes a good Cream Soda from back in the day is nice…with a little rum ;)

Funny – the only time I’ve ever been South was when I WANTED the pop! I found ginger-ale and coke was the only thing that would quench and satisfy my thirst from the heat! Left me feeling quite bloated in my bikini though. Blech.

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117 Stephanie @ Life, Love & Inspiration March 22, 2011

I gave up pop in November of ’09. I never consumed more than a can a day but it is still something I am proud of! Now I just see it as POISON and am never tempted to have any. I find other things to mix my booze with :) ha!

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118 Mama Pea March 22, 2011

Pea Daddy gave up soda for Lent…he usually drinks maybe 2 Diet Pepsis a week? Anyway, he promptly bought a 20 oz. bottle to take on the plane on Wednesday—and then spilled it all over himself. He called it karma. He hasn’t ordered one since :)

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119 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

haha love that story

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120 Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric for kicking his soda habit! And I love how you call it pop. I grew up in Minnesota and I think in MN, Wisconsin, NDakota, SDakota, everyone calls it pop :)

But that’s awesome that he kicked his habit and stuck with it! The fact that he lost 10 lbs, rubbed off on his coworkers, and doesnt even have coke with his rum….just shows his dedication! Glad he has stuck with it and glad he had you, Ange, to help him :)

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121 Maria March 22, 2011

I don’t drink fizzy drinks any more (love it that they call it Pop in canada!)
I read an article about how the stuff that makes it fizzy actually depleated the calcium and minerals from your bones, and so the thought of that puts me off more than anything. As other work colleagues often had a diet coke on a friday lunch, then this went to every lunch- the caffeine and sweeteners made me feel bad (after the initial rush) so it was not hard to give up.Now I just have water even if I go out- it’s what I like!

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122 Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit March 22, 2011

I’m loving this post today! I too was addicted to pop at one point [I always drank a Coca Cola Zero while smoking a cigarette]. I woke up one day and enough was enough. I quit smoking and drinking pop in the same go. That was… 2 years ago. I replaced pop with mineral water and juice [I loved the fizziness of pop] and instead of smoking I did breathing exercises to help with my stress. It’s challenging, but totally worth it!

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123 Merage March 22, 2011

Yay Eric!!! That’s definitely something to be proud of! My husband has TRULY decreased his pop consumption…maybe a couple cans a month. He’s learned to love carrot juice, fresh strawberry juice, and water (yay water). I personally stopped drinking pop almost 7 years ago–I was never addicted, but it was just a bad habit.. .there is ZERO benefit to drinking it. I not only never crave it, but a few years back when I took a sip after years of not drinking it… I said to myself “gross…”… it’s just weird! Aside from fresh veggie juice and blended fruits on occasion… I truly LOVE water. :) It feels good.

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124 Ellie@fitforthesoul March 22, 2011

yayyyyy! :) Yeahh~I think i’ve made a lotttttt of changes throughout the last few years! They’ve been rather gradual. I somehow really didn’t want pop anymore either about 5 years ago! 0_o (wow has it been that long?) and don’t drink it b/c it doesn’t taste good or make me feel healthy. It also gives weird aftertaste haha. Also, I try not to eat too many refined sugars (aside from pastries here and there) and eat a lot of veggies/fruits, and whole grains. And raw bars! Also, I started seriously working out about 3 years ago and I’ve never felt better mentally and physically! We’re truly connected in every way–thoughts, emotions, and body. ps: get this, I used to eat chili cheese fries EVERY nutrition break in high school for at least ONE whole year! No wonder I didn’t feel right. Once in a while isn’t bad nor do I judge b/c I eat many things in moderation! But i’m sure it’s not wise if it’s everyday. have a great day!

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125 Lauren March 22, 2011

Question about the smoothie and smoothies in general I suppose. I notice you and a lot of other bloggers use frozen bananas. Are these bananas overripe then frozen or do you just throw them in the freezer when you get home from the grocery store?? Do you peel and chop them first?? I really want to jump on the smoothie train and your smoothie above looks like the perfect and easiest place to start! Thanks!

Lauren

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126 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

I use both overly ripe (spotty, brown) and yellow ripe bananas for freezing! :) I peel them and then chop them into 1 inch chunks and put them in tupperware in the freezer. They are great for smoothies- the riper the better!

For Banana Soft Serve however, I find that yellow ripe (not brown) bananas work best and get the creamiest in the food processor, whereas overly brown bananas tend to crystallize in the freezer.

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127 Brittany March 22, 2011

Go Eric! Giving up soda was awesome for my body. I recently became vegan and am absolutely loving everything it has done for my body and my mind. I feel great and have so much energy! The only thing I am having a hard time dealing with is judgement from other people. After making the decision to go vegan, I put something up on my facebook profile because I was so excited and within minutes I was attacked by people questioning my decisions. People said things like “They are just animals, they are made to be food” or “give it a week and you’ll change your mind”. It really hurts the way people judge you simply based on what you eat. It makes me scared to tell anyone or even talk about veganism. How do you deal?

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128 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

What we eat and how we live our lives is such a sensitive topic for many people. It can be really difficult being on the ‘outside’ (or not the norm) and I have had a lot of resistance from people in my life too (but thankfully also lots of support!). I find that many people assume that because I’m a vegan I judge how THEY eat, but that isn’t the case at all and I always try to make a point of expressing that so people feel more comfortable discussing it. Open communication is key…and people can always agree to disagree too! Of course, there will always be the negative comments that you can’t do anything about, but in my experience it is just best to forget about it and surround yourself with people who will be a positive influence in your life!

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129 Brittany March 22, 2011

Thank you so much for your response. It really helped some of the ways I have been feeling. I just need to keep reminding myself that the awesome improvements to my body are so worth any of the criticism! Your blog is great, and I am trying out the chocolate torte tonight!

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130 Gail March 23, 2011

I agree with the way people can be sometimes. I don’t even understand why people get so defensive about something like that. Is it hurting them that you switched to veganism. What do they care? I don’t understand it. I’m not 100% vegan, but I have cut way down my intake of animal products, and when I mention this to people or suggest that maybe they’d feel better if they did the same, they get all defensive. It’s very bizarre. I’ve just learned to ignore what they say. I know that I feel much better since I’ve changed the way I eat, and no matter what they say, they’re not going to change that.

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131 lauren @ spiced plate March 22, 2011

congrats! i was never one for soda, but i’m a sucker for ginger ale. I get my satisfaction with ginger kombucha instead!

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132 laura March 22, 2011

Smoothie looks so smooth and creamy!
This spring im making a big change in my health- gaining to get to a healthy weight and maintain it. I also want to experiment with my diet, and try mroe and more new things.

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133 Clare - Never Niche March 22, 2011

Great job, Eric!

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134 Dana March 22, 2011

Hello!
Such an awesome story. Just wondering on what kind of juicer that you have – I am in the market for one!
Thanks! :)

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135 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

I have a Breville Fountain Plus I think it is called!

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136 Gail March 23, 2011

I have a Breville also, and I really like it. I juice almost daily – it feels great to drink fresh made juice like that :0)

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137 Dana March 23, 2011

Thanks! :)

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138 Emma (Namaste Everyday) March 22, 2011

I would like to slowly remove dairy from my diet. I’m not sure how its going to be while I’m living abroad, but I am going to begin seeking economical alternatives to milk, especially for breakfast in the morning–I love oatmeal! I’m just beginning the process, and I don’t expect I will be able to quit cold turkey, purely for financial and health reasons, but I’m on my way!

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139 Danielle Gruszka March 22, 2011

I’ve been trying to quit drinking coke zero now, but every time I try to go without it I get such bad headaches and have to drink it again to help get me through school…what do you think is the best way to quit???
I’ve tried coffee…but I don’t like the taste of it :/ Any suggestions???

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140 Gail March 23, 2011

I wonder if you’re having caffeine withdrawal when you stop drinking the coke zero. My mom drank a lot of coffee and once while on vacation she didn’t have any and got really sick. It turned out it was caffeine withdrawal. Maybe instead of quitting the coke zero cold turkey, cut out a little week by week until you are no longer drink it. Also, have you tried tea? Black tea has the most caffeine in it. You could start out with that, then switch to green tea which has less caffeine, then white tea which has the least amount of caffeine in it. Also, I like herbal tea since it has no caffeine in it and there are so many wonderful flavors out there.

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141 Allison March 22, 2011

This is a slight tangent, but I am really trying to give up my disordered eating. It has been hanging onto me forever, and I’m just ready to be done with it. Going vegan has definitely helped, as it has lessened all types of fear and guilt, but I still don’t think I’m fully recovered. I just want to be truly healthy! And I want to love myself and be free of negativity! Once and for all.

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142 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Goodluck with your recovery :) You can do it!

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143 Alex March 22, 2011

Having just finished reading your “A Year Can Change A Lot” series, I logged onto my school email account to find this quote at the end of the weekly bulletin. It made me thing of you, so I thought I’d share it with you.
“I am responsible. Although I may not be able to prevent the worst from happening, I am responsible for my attitude toward the inevitable misfortunes that darken life. Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life. I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and act for the good of others.” – Walter Anderson
I love your blog so much and all of the recipes you post. Thank you for being such a beautiful person.

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144 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Thanks Alex I LOVE that quote!

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145 Mina March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric, that is a hard, hard habit to kick! I too quit soda a few years back, and it is no easy task. I have had my relapses, but I am still keeping it up.
Just recently I decided to give up all artificial sweeteners, I am getting my degree in Nutritional Science from UC Berkeley, am eating a vegan diet, but I was still using splenda…….seems crazy right?
I have this belief that the way you can truly judge whether you are doing something that is wrong is if you care that other people see you doing it, or if you’re embarrassed to be seen doing it. SPLENDA FAILED this test hard; I realized that whenever I used splenda I felt like a hypocrite and I also tried to hide it from others. Obviously I knew what I was doing was wrong, both for myself, and in order to set an example of a healthy lifestyle for anyone who I would be advising in the future. I quit splenda and I have never looked back!
Part of what motivated me to kick the splenda habit, and what kept me motivated was actually you and your blog! Your life, your food, and your outlook all seem so balanced, healthy, and well-rounded, and you really do GLOW, and I am sure part of it is because of the vegan, healthy, and balanced lifestyle you lead. I have been a dedicated reader of your blog for quite a while, and I realized that the reason I love your blog is because of how natural, healthy, delicious everything you make is, and how balanced your approach to life is. Thanks for you help! (although you may not have known it at the time)

Now I only use stevia, fair trade sugar, raw agave, and sometimes honey :)
…….and I feel soooo much better! (no more headaches or stomach cramps)

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146 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

Your comment just put a big smile on my face…thank you!
I used to addicted to splenda too! I cut it cold turkey back in…2008 I think it was? My consumption was out of control and I had sooo many stomach problems! Good for you for making the change too. :)

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147 kaila @ healthy helper! March 22, 2011

Tell Eric congrats for me! That is fantastic! I have heard how addictive coke can be so that is a big accomplish to be free of it for a year!

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148 mi-an March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric!

My boyfriend gave up soda for Lent!! I’m so proud of him. I’m giving up land animal meat, cow cheese, and coffee. :) I hope he can keep it up! He’s vegetarian so it’s easy for me to give up meat.

Our reward: a trip to Buenos Aires next month! ok we planned that like 3 months ago. heheh

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149 Lauren March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! Especially with all the opposition from co-workers. Some people question my vegetarianism, and it doesn’t bother me too much. It gets frustrating and annoying when people say it’s not healthy or judge my reasons without listening to me. I’ve been able to convince my parents to make meatfree meals when I’m home and when I’m not home, which is great!

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150 Samantha @ Mama Notes March 22, 2011

I feel like I’m addicted to chocolate in this way. I would love to cut it out cold turkey!!

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151 Audrey March 22, 2011

Yay! Congratulations, Eric!!! :)

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152 Rachel March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric!!! Soda is so infused into Western culture that it is probably one of the hardest things to quit!

I am trying to stop binge-eating… I restrict-crave-binge-restrict-crave-binge… Some days I would give anything to be normal again…

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153 Judy March 22, 2011

Wow ~ that is great! Good job Eric.

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154 Little Miss Runshine March 22, 2011

Congrats Eric!!!
I gave up soda (haha we call it that here) in high school and am glad I did. I crave water. Is that weird?

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155 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

that is great!

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156 Gail March 23, 2011

Ha! Not one bit! I love and crave water myself – especially ice cold water – yum!

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157 Zestful Lou March 22, 2011

Wow! Good for him! I can’t believe that was already a year ago. Time flies! I have enjoyed your blog daily for well over a year now. Thank you!

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158 Lisa (bakebikeblog) March 22, 2011

Wow – congrats to Eric!! I cant believe how quickly that year went?!

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159 Nicole March 22, 2011

Switching to a vegetarian diet definitely caused a few waves. I like in rural Iowa, and people definitely like their meat here! Mostly people just thought it was a little strange, and couldn’t figure out what I would be eating if I wasn’t eating a big slab of meat for dinner every night, lol. My coworkers gave some of my lunches weird looks (particularly when I brought in Indian or Thai leftovers). I didn’t really have peer pressure to eat meat, luckily. My parents are avid meat eaters, but my mom has started making sure she has plenty of fresh produce in the kitchen when she knows I’m coming to visit. I even got her to try a green monster! (:

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160 Alyssa March 22, 2011

Wow, Congrats Eric!
This year I have already made a bunch of huge health changes but the biggest and hardest was giving up coffee everyday. I am not at that point yet to say that I won’t drink it anymore but I am only having it 1-2 times a week as opposed to 2-4 cups a day. I am still drinking caffeinated teas and such but for some reason coffee was still really hard to get off of. I felt like I was coming off a drug. It to could be do to the creamer (with high fruit corn syrup and whatever else) I was putting in every cup too.

I have realized that, for me, going cold turkey wasn’t really what worked. For me it has been a gradual change that I started but then didn’t even realize I was doing until I was like, I haven’t had coffee for so many day! The crazy symptom that has stuck with me so far is that every afternoon it use to be a bad headache but now my ears just ring until I go to bed. I can live with it but I sure do hope that within time it will stop.

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161 Alyssa March 22, 2011

he, he . . .I meant fructose.

Anyways, it was really hard to tell anyone that I was trying to stop because they would immediately start questioning me or tell me that it isn’t worth trying to stop or it isn’t bad for you. Which yeah doesn’t make it any easier.

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162 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

that is a great approach! That is how I approached veganism…very gradually over many months. Worked for me!

And I wish it was high FRUIT corn syrup ;)

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163 Ashley March 22, 2011

Congrats to Eric! I don’t drink soda often, only ginger ale or root beer from time to time. I used to drink quite a bit of soda (or pop, haha, I say it both ways!) but gave it up as a result of falling in love with coffee. But I suffer with heartburn, so I’ve been trying to cut back on the coffee, opting for decaffeinated tea instead. I am glad to have discovered I can function normally without the caffeine– so I do on occasion have some:)
I think one thing I need to change is my sweet tooth: my mother is a Type 2 diabetic, and with sugar being in near everything nowadays, it’s no wonder I crave the stuff! So I’ve been trying to cut back on sugar intake: lowering sugar amounts in baked goods, only making sweet stuff if I want it instead of buying it prepackaged and ready to eat, not adding any to tea or coffee.
I also need to change my way of thinking. I’ve lost quite a bit of confidence in myself the past couple years of university, and I haven’t been treating my body with the care and nourishment it deserves. I’d like to take back my confidence and create a better relationship with food.

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164 tweal March 22, 2011

Yay for Eric!

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165 Caitlin March 22, 2011

Hey! So I sent a link of your recipe page to one of my friends on facebook.
She wrote:
“I want to make EVERYTHING on that site.”

A different friend commented with this…
“Dear Caitlin-
Thank you for sucking away hours of my day by introducing me to the Oh She Glows blog. I now have 10000 recipies I want to try.
<3 Me"

Yet another friend commented with this"
"I read this too and have been for months in secret and then don't discuss it with you (I don't know why) hahaha. Anyway although I am OBSESSED with fish and eggs for that matter I am considering cutting these things out to see what difference it makes. I have been eating better for the past several months (more whole foods less unrecognizable junk) and I THINK I notice a difference in the way I feel, but still need to figure out a solution to my rude misbehaving skin that has not been clear since age 10. I'm not really a drastic moves kinda girl but I'm thinking I'll attempt to be 80% vegan at first and see what happens. Any and all tips are welcome…..Hahaha I bring the overnight oats to work and everyone is like what the hell are you eating you weird girl. And I tell them it's an aborted chia pet."

ANYWAY, thought you would get a kick out of these. I'll continue to refer recipe and inspiration seekers to your site! Thanks for blogging!
xo
Caitlin

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166 Caitlin March 22, 2011

Oh and the friend who said she wanted to make EVERYTHING on the site is also in the Dietetics program at The University of Pittsburgh, so ya must be doing something right!

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167 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

LOL!!!! thanks for sharing that made my night!

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168 Annie@stronghealthyfit March 22, 2011

Awesome, inspiring post!

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169 Heather Dawn March 22, 2011

Congratulations to Eric!

I have made a few lifestyle changes-quitting soda in high school, becoming vegetarian and later vegan.
This Spring I am implementing a lot more Bikram yoga in my routine-striving for 1-2 times per week. I am suffering from a small knee injury that has postponed my half marathon training. It is very frustrating but I am trying to take it easy and strengthen my body by doing yoga and eating healthy. Sucks to have to go through an injury to really appreciate what your body is capable of.

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170 Stephanie March 22, 2011

I was literally just thinking about that quote today! Crazy.
Love this post! I sent it to my mom because she has pop around the house and I don’t think she gets how bad it is for her or my brother.

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171 Kat @ Cupcake Kat March 22, 2011

Way to go Eric!
I actually do not like pop and never drink it. I wish more people would lessen their dependence on it because that stuff is addicting
One goal I have for myself is to eat less sweets. I’m usually ok but I still sometimes can’t resist buying some unhealthy pastry when I’m out. The sad thing is, most of the time it does not taste as good as something I can make myself!

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172 Mary March 22, 2011

Congratulations, Eric!

I gave up Diet Coke in January 2010, and since then I have never had one. I went cold turkey also. I used to drink 3-6 a day. It was my first step in Eating Clean. My problem was more with artificial sweeteners than sugar, and I completely cut them out as well. I have never felt better in my life, and I think without artificial sweeteners to dull my taste buds I can now really taste real food. I eat almost all veggies now and love them. A year ago I wouldn’t eat any. Small changes truly do lead to bigger ones!

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173 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 22, 2011

artificial sweeteners dulled my taste buds too. I used to make things SO sweet with splenda.

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174 Lee March 22, 2011

My husband decided that he was addicted to diet coke so he stopped (for the month of march – he says he doesn’t want to stop for good, just cut down which is better than nothing, he was drinking like 6 a day) and says that by making that one change, he’s had less unhealthy cravings and eating healthier in general.

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175 Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day March 22, 2011

Soda can be soo addictive. I go through phases with diet soda… and it’s really hard to break them. The more soda I drank, the more I wanted to eat sugar. (and this is diet soda!)

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176 Christi March 22, 2011

I have actually been making some huge changes in how I eat. I deal with a lot of health problems, mainly allergies and asthma when it comes to what I eat. Last summer I decided to cut dairy from my diet completely, which for a cheese and ice cream lover has been very difficult. It was really hard at first, but I can tell a huge difference. I also have a mild allergy to soy, which is in EVERYTHING. I work my hardest to stay away from anything with even trace amounts of soy in it, but it’s very difficult. So that was big change number one.

At the beginning of this year I decided to change the rest of my diet completely. I’ve cut out all processed food and sugar. Also very hard to do. I’m learning a lot though about how to eat healthy food– whole grains, fruits, veggies, and lean meats. I’ve started following a few health blogs (yours was the big inspiration). I’ve already dropped 16 pounds since the beginning of the year and I’m feeling great! i’m really enjoying learning about foods and healthy alternatives. I always thought that eating healthy meant eating boring, but that is so very not true! I love experimenting and trying new flavors and I’m learning to be more creative with my food. I love it!

Thanks for the inspiration and flavorful food! And congrats to Eric!

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177 Adina March 22, 2011

Wow, I can’t believe it’s already been a year?! Congrats to him!!! (I wish I could get my dad to do the same)

I definitely made some healthy changes this year! I think I can safely say that I overcame anorexia.
-I made the change to eating enough!!
-I made the change from forcing myself to suffer and relearned how to feed and take care of myself
-I made the change from exercising out of pure addiction and learned how to exercise for the right reasons. I now do it for pleasure and to train as an athlete.
-I also changed from using food as a means to seek spiritual truth and put food back in its place. As fuel.

I did it with the support of a nutritionist and counselor and a loving family. I got sooo much opposition from others, everyone has their own idea of what people “should” do and tried to force their opinions on me. One of my friend’s parents was convinced that my problem was that I don’t eat red meat. (25lbs heavier and I still haven’t eaten any). Mostly it was God.
And I owe a great deal of these changes to blogs like yours. Thanks for being such a great example and a source of inspiration when my motivation is low.
<3

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178 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 23, 2011

Congrats on your changes!

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179 Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca) March 22, 2011

Wow – that seems like just yesterday that you wrote about Eric giving up pop!! Time flies!!

Congrats to him on one year clean :-) Hehe.

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180 Gail March 23, 2011

Congrats to Eric – that’s a really great accomplishment. I used to drink diet soda a lot a few years ago. I gave it up about 4 years ago, and never looked back. Since then I’ve gone to more organic food, homemade food, no processed food, no white sugar, no white flour, etc. I did it all in baby steps. Because of recent issues, I’ve slowly been incorporating white sugar and flour back in my diet (emotional eating), and I have to say I feel like crap. I need to get that stuff out of me! Anyway, I feel so much better after changing so much of my diet. I’m happy to say that my husband finally has given up soda. He still drinks a lot of juice spritzers, but at least he’s off the soda. There was some “retro” soda at the supermarket recently that he was tempted to drink, but I was able to stop him from drinking it.

I don’t understand why people are so negative when it comes to someone trying to do something healthy for themselves. I’ve experienced the same types of comments from co-workers that Eric experienced. It’s almost like deep down they know this stuff is bad for them, but they don’t want to admit it and instead give the person who is trying to change a lot of grief. I get it all the time. Good for him for standing up to those people and continuing to do what he wanted.

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181 Foxy March 23, 2011

Congrats Eric! So strange- I was also thinking over the weekend that I need to juice more again and plan on starting next week!

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182 Erika @ Health and Happiness in LA March 23, 2011

Way to go, Eric!! That is awesome!!

I have made lots of healthy changes throughout my life (like going vegan, giving up HFCS, etc) and I agree that cold turkey is the way to go!

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183 Kate @ the pseudovegan March 23, 2011

CONGRATS ERIC!! What a wonderful journey! I have been gluten free for 4 years and dairy free since August-ish 2010. Although my changes are from allergies, it has ‘given me the momentum’ to eliminate other toxics out of my diet, and the result is amazing! I just accepted a new job offer in Philadelphia. My co-workers in Pittsburgh told me I am not allowed to eat at my new job for a few months, because I have to “break my new co-workers into my food.” As if I am some kind of alien?! My food is delicious and nutritious, their food– usually easy-mac, cheeseburgers, etc etc. Some of the NURSES I work with bring a 2L of Mountain Dew to work for the day. They don’t drink ANY WATER. And tried to tell me that “actually, the body does not need water to hydrate itself” Hoping for some healthier co-workers in Philadelphia!!!

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184 Sabrina @ Radioactive Runner March 23, 2011

Good on your husband for making such a big change and sticking to it.. that’s so awesome!! That smoothy looks amazing.. I’ll be honest though, I think I may wait until summer, or at least until this snow storm is over, to make it. It looks so nice and thick… YUM!

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185 jillian m. {coffee, light and sweet} March 23, 2011

congratulations to eric! what an accomplishment.

i also gave up of soda. and to be honest, it wasn’t that hard for me. i feel like fruit juice is 10x tastier! the only time i really crave it is when i have pizza, but i’ve been very careful not to give in.

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186 Lana March 23, 2011

Wow! Send a huge congrats in his direction!! I too gave up soda’s my sophomore year of college and it was really hard because soda’s were included in our meal plans and it actually cost extra to get a bottle of water. I initially gave up soda’s for lent and decided to just keep rolling with it. That has been of of the many healthy changes I made.

Juicing sounds like a great spring change. I made a juice with carrots, tomatoes and parsley the other day, which is a combo I highly recommend!!

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187 Kelly @ Cocktails and Cardio March 23, 2011

Congrats to Eric! I know how addicting Coca Cola is. I used to swear by it. For headache relief, for the 2 PM slump, for breakfast instead of coffee. You name it I wanted Coca Cola to cure it. I used to say that I would probably never be an alcoholic, or a drug addict but if you took away my Coke I’d be a hot mess. Last year I decided to drop the habit. I used to drink it a ton when I was in HS but through college I used to drink maybe 1 a day, then maybe 2-3 a week TOPS. If it wasn’t around I wouldn’t drink it. When I was working full time I usually had one with lunch and that was it. I started noticing I’d get kidney infections due to too much coffee and coke. That is another reason I scaled back.

I stopped drinking regular coke last year. I switched instead to Diet Coke when I would have it or want a fix. Personally I hate diet soda so it did the job but didn’t make me want to finish the diet soda. I still don’t finish it. All in all I’d rather drink water. Once switching to diet soda – fast food didn’t taste the same, it didn’t work well with the diet vs. regular coke. I then just went with water if I went to a place like that and soon just gave up going to those places unless I was in a pinch on a lunch break which is rare since I’ve been planning out my meals.

I now only use diet drinks for mixers when having drinks and most times stick to wine or beer instead.

I feel better and never thought I’d be able to say good-bye to coca cola. So I feel you 100% Eric and I agree one change really does lead to other changes!

Thanks for sharing girl!

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188 Sarah March 23, 2011

My hubby is a huge Coke Zero drinker. He packs 2 for his lunch each day then drinks 2-3 more when he gets home at night. I’ve tried getting him to stop drinking it so much and he did agree to switch from regular Coke. He was diagnosed with T2 diabetes so he really needs to quit drinking it. He thinks there’s nothing wrong with it.

Recently, I’ve tried giving up my darned SBux grande 1 pump vanilla non-fat latte addiction! It’s been a really bad daily habit for the past year (since I got back from France). I’m not sure whether it’s the caffeine or sugar addiction. I was dumb and tried to cut it out cold turkey, but had such bad headaches I have to now phase it out slowly. I went from grande to tall size last week (1 less espresso shot) and it seems to not be causing a lot of withdrawal. Next, I’ll be giving up the shots. After that I’ll just trade for regular black coffee. I think my body (and wallet!) will thank me. We’ll see how it goes!

It’s just amazing to me how much our food addictions/habits take over our lives. So pleased the Eric was just able to make that decision and act on it so quickly. Good job!

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189 Suzanne March 23, 2011

Angela – I LOVE your sight – I am a bit older than you but so resonate with all that you say on here. I have quit the diet pepsi thing many times and realized the last time (over a year ago) that it had to be for good – it is like alcohol for an alcoholic – 1 sip and I am back on it! I love your balanced approach and healthy outlook – esp as someone who has had an eating disorder, works with people with ED and still struggles at times with all that goes along with body image/ food issues…You are an inspiration! I still struggle with some fake sugars and a big sweet tooth – but we eat 95% all natural whole foods. I know a big part of my growth is in kindness to myself when I do not live up to the perfection I want to live. Thanks for your wonderful encouragement in that area.
I love your recipes too – made the Peppermint Patty Green Monster for St Paddy’s day for my boys and they loved it (I did not tell them it had spinach in it -they assumed it must have been food coloring!

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190 Sam @ the neurotic yogini March 23, 2011

Congratulations Eric!!!! I quit drinking sodas at the age of 12 (around then at least). I am lucky it was so easy for me.. I did have a mild coffee addiction a few years ago.. though I broke that relatively quickly as well. I don’t like the idea of false energy, which is all that sugar, caffeine, and crap provide! I want real, healthy energy.. produced from fresh fruits/veggies/and other healthy yummies!! :)

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191 LauraJayne March 23, 2011

Congrats to Eric! I’ve tried (successfully, I thought) to cut diet coke out of my diet – the longest time was for 3 years – I thought I’d truly kicked the habit! However, I started drinking a bottle or two when I needed the boost, and it grew back into a daily habit! Since then, I’ve stopped for a month to three months at a time, but I always go back! I definitely need a new motivation to quit again!

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192 Michelle @ Turning Over a New Leaf March 23, 2011

Good for him! I still have a diet soda habit, but it has gotten better. I use it for the caffeine, mostly. Though this week I’m participating in a challenge which requires me to only drink all-natural beverages (coffee, tea, water, 100% juice, etc) for one week. I’m on day three and right now I could really use a caffeine boost. I’ve been drinking tea like nothing else, but there’s not enough caffeine concentrated in tea or coffee to help me. Ah well. Otherwise, I’m feeling quite a bit better! I wonder if my bloating had to do with all the diet sodas…

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193 Kathleen @ KatsHealthCorner March 23, 2011

Congrats Eric!!! :D Angela, your smoothies are so much better than any pop! :D

xoxo
Kathleen

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194 Veronica March 24, 2011

Angela, first of all I want to thank you for adding an email subscribe button to your page! I’m so glad you figured that out (I was the one who bugged you about it a while back and at that time, you weren’t sure how to get it). Now I get notified each time you post and don’t forget to check back like I used to. Second of all, this is a great story about your hubby’s success with kicking the pop habit. I forwarded it to my own hubby who has been addicted to coke since he was a child and has tried to quit several times without success. I can identify with your hubby, as I think many of us can, who have people in our lives that try to derail us when we make choices to be healthier. I tend to think these people, who generally do love and care for us, might be jealous or think that they should be making changes too and instead, do the easier thing and give us grief. Well, way to go for not letting them win, Eric!!

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195 thehealthyapron March 25, 2011

yay for ERic! My hubby would drink pop at least twice a day when we first started dating. It took me a few years but he doesn’t drink it anymore! He’ll opt for 100% homemade juices or water! I’ve never been prouder. While he’ll occcasionally still drink a pop, say at a cookout, he doesn’t even finish the can. So proud :)

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196 M March 26, 2011

Congrats to Eric- BRAVO!!

I gave up coffee a couple of years ago-I was really addicted to having wayyyy too much coffee every day ( and spent a lot of money on fancy coffees out).
Now coffee isn’t bad for you, but I didn’t like feeling so dependant on it and spending so much.

I quit by going cold turkey-and had HORRIBLE headaches for over a week but toughed it out.I still absolutely love the smell of good coffee,but haven’t had a drop since.
Switched to gunpowder green looseleaf tea instead(now I spend too much buying fancy tins of that-ha ha!)

I would like to reduce my eating portion sizes in half this spring and start doing some form of cardio(even walking) -I only do yoga now.

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197 Vegan Radhika Sarohia December 18, 2012

Great to see this follow-up post abt kicking the soda habit, congrats! (Over a year late haha)

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198 Fit Missy November 15, 2013

That smoothie looks delicious!!!!

Going to have to make it!

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