Health Challenge Tip #1

Can you guess what it is? I bet if you're a soda drinker you can.

#1: Say bye bye to coke!

Soda, pop, coke, diet coke. Whatever you call it. Put it down and step away from it. I'm from the southwest and down there we call it coke, but in Iowa they call it something else (I can never remember which, soda? or pop?).
I understand that coke can become an addiction. But I don't really care. Stop drinking it! It's empty calories, it makes you crave more sugar AND your brain depends on it...You'll find that out once you stop drinking it. It's hard. It's really hard, but guess why? Yep,'re addicted! You'll have headaches when you stop, you're going through withdrawal!

Now. Don't think I forgot about you diet coke drinkers (mom, that's you!). Just because it's "diet" doesn't mean it's good for you. And really and truly, do you know anyone, ANYONE, who switched to "diet" coke and lost weight? Mmmhmm. I didn't think so. It's because fake sugar still makes you crave sugar and it still has caffeine which is what is happening when you get headaches. And boy howdy, don't even get me started on aspartame, splenda or other fake sugars.

While we're on the subject of caffeine, how about we throw coffee under the bus, too. Because to be honest, coke isn't a problem for me. I might have a Sprite here or there, but can't remember the last time I sat down and had a Dr Pepper or a Diet Coke. So, really this tip is just for you readers.

But coffee. Oh, dear, sweet coffee. How I will miss you. Frappes, frappachinos, lattes, coffee with cream and raw sugar. I love coffee in most forms: frozen, hot, name it. But I made a decision that July would be Health "CHALLENGE" month (it may extend into August since July is a 1/3 over already!) and this is my challenge and what a challenge it will be.

Harsh as it may sound, let's start slowly. If you're a pack a day (that's 6-pack...smoking's another story) kinda gal (or guy), start by knocking off one at a time. Going cold turkey might be tough if you have one periodically throughout the day. Take a look at which one you could toss and go from there. And replace it with, gasp! Water. Remember that? Drink it. Lots of it. Your body needs it and I promise you that coke you're drinking isn't giving your body the water it needs. It's actually making you need MORE water. Same with things like coffee and tea, so drink it up. Put a lime, a lemon or an orange in it if you just can't drink it alone.

If you're a morning coffee drinker like me, cold turkey might not be so hard. But trust me, it'll still be hard. I drive by Starbuck's or Fredrich's and get a tear in my eye (kidding, but only sorta).

So coke coke drinkers...are you with me? Let's do it. I can do it. And I know you can, too.