Healthy Living

This Crazy Thing Happened When I Quit Diet Coke

01/15/2017 12:31pm ET | Updated January 16, 2017

My name is Erica, and I’m a Diet Coke addict.

I used to be literally obsessive about Diet Coke. Fountain soda was my favorite. If that wasn’t available, I would choose a bottle, than a can, and if all else failed, a 2-liter. Why did the 2-liter come in last place? It would lose fizz too easily. Yes, I was that specific.

I know I’m not alone in my addiction. I once knew a girl who drank a case a day. To those who don’t understand, the allure isn’t just about Diet Coke’s lack of calories. It just has SOMETHING.

So what happened when I cut it out cold turkey? I went from drinking it every day to zip, zero... nada! Well, something crazy, surprising happened.

First of all, women started looking at me funny as I stared longingly at their Diet Cokes. And my hand felt a little empty with just a glass of water. And I became frustrated that something so wrong felt so right.

But after a month of going cold turkey, something even CRAZIER happened.

I stopped wanting it completely.

All of a sudden the fog lifted. And my incessant cravings went away. And one day when I just out of curiosity decided to have a sip, it tasted weird. I remembered the taste as magical. But now it just tasted like... chemicals.

I had reduced sugar cravings.

So I wasn’t just a Diet Coke addict. I was a bonafide sugar addict. And I’d struggled for years to reduce my sugar consumption. But without the constant sweetness of my soda, my sweet tooth started to subside. And while I of course still liked sugar, I didn’t crave it with the same intensity

I went down a clothes size and looked less puffy.

So I wasn’t dieting at the time, but I surely felt like I had a few more pounds to lose. And somehow, without doing anything else different, my stubborn last few pounds melted off. And maybe this also was a side effect of my reduced need for sugar. But these pounds didn’t come back... ever.

The last of my skin problems cleared.

I had struggled with skin problems since my teen years. And while my skin had calmed considerably, I still would get breakouts on my chin. But without Diet Coke, my skin was calm. And a problem that had plagued me so much of my life was completely gone.

So what do I drink besides Diet Coke?

Seltzer water with a little bit of flavoring. I realized I just love bubbles, even without all the chemicals. Who knew?

Coffee. Hey, when you give up Diet Coke, all the fun isn’t gone. There’s still coffee. And you can have lots of fun with coffee.

Iced tea mixed with some soda water. Because sometimes I wanted bubbles with some extra flavor.

Had I realized that giving up Diet Coke was going to be so amazing, I would have done it much earlier.

I always felt entitled to having a vice. After all, I didn’t drink or smoke. What could be so bad about drinking some soda? But once I stopped drinking it, I realized my vice wasn’t so innocent.

I haven’t had a soda in about five years, and I don’t miss it at all. Totally crazy! So if you’ve been wanting to cut back on Diet Coke, give it a try. And I dare you to come back here in a month and tell me that you feel anything but amazing!

Learn more about Erica Mesirov at www.ericamesirov.com.

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