Recently, I have been trying to cut down on diet soda, since the thought of filling my body with artificial sweeteners has started to trouble me. For more than 10 years, I have been choosing ‘diet’, ‘light’ and ‘zero’ options to avoid ‘drinking my calories’. However, with all the efforts that I make to eat clean and avoid preservatives, it seems stupid to be downing chemicals on a weekly basis.
If you are in the same boat as me, and you need the last push – read this article from Precision Nutrition: All about Diet Sodas. From the article:
If I told you to go to the store and pick out 3 of the healthiest beverages, would diet soda be one of them? Instead of thinking about how much a food or drink can harm our health, I like to consider how much a food or drink could actually improve our health. Thinking of diet soda in that regard can help clear things up. Now, while it hasn’t been “proven” that diet soda is the final blow to someone’s health status, we do know consuming diet soda regularly doesn’t do much to improve health. From a health perspective, diet soda probably isn’t the best idea.
A person who drinks just 2 cans of soda a day will pay $206 over the course of a year to keep the habit going. If there is more than one soda drinker in the household, that yearly total could quickly double (or even triple). The bad news is that Diet Coke isn’t tax deductible. The good news is that there are many non-profit organizations that are.
As a late (or early?) New Year resolution, I decided to avoid all artificial sweeteners for 1 month. This sound incredibly simple, but when you’re used to drinking something sweet almost everyday, and you don’t want to just substitute with ‘regular’ soda, it’s actually quite a challenge. So I have come up with some calorie-free or low-cal alternatives to diet soda:
Use 4-5 tea bags for 2 liters of water. Fill a glass bottle with cold water and tea bags – leave in the fridge for at least 4 hours. Use lemon/lime juice and wedges for extra taste.
So far I have had the best experiences with ‘refreshing teas’ containing mint, licorice, fennel, anis and similar herbs.
Also check this link for inspiration:
Melons are sweet, healthy and relatively low in calories (the same applies to berries). Cucumbers and other watery vegetables add a nice ‘fresh’ taste and more volume. Just blend all ingredients with ice and enjoy.
I have experimented with 2 versions so far:
#1: Galia melon, cucumber, lime, cardamom, ice
#2: Watermelon, frozen strawberries, lime
If you have any great recipes or tips, feel free to share in comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org