Several people wanted to know after reading yesterday's "Power to Overcome" devotion what drink I switched to when I decided to stop drinking diet soda. Evidently I'm not the only one that finds that stuff addictive and wants free of its merciless, sweet, bubbly grip!
I switched to tea, yall. All kinds of tea. Green tea, rooibos tea, herbal tea, and black tea (only if decaf). Tea has health benefits that soda does not - it is made from a natural plant and water after all.
This also helped me transition off caffeine. Did you know decaf black tea has about 3 mg of caffeine per cup whereas soda has about 37 per cup? Herbal teas have none. I was tired (sorry for the pun) of my energy level being tied to caffeine.
Honestly, I didn't feel real great for several days during my diet cola/caffeine detox but it wasn't that bad. (Just pray for help and take Tylenol or naps as needed.) I'm really glad I did it.
How this started for me was I saw a book at the start of the year called "The Ultimate Tea Diet." I flipped through it for an hour or so. I learned a lot about tea there and decided to make the switch from cola (I didn't do the tea diet plan). I bought a pretty glass pitcher at World Market and started keeping it in the fridge filled with decaf cold-brewed Lipton tea, lightly sweetened. I got diet cola out of the house.
At restaurants I ordered water with lemon or iced tea instead of cola. I asked for decaf tea if possible and unsweetened if possible. Here in the south they put lots of sugar in tea!! It tastes yum but I knew all that sugar would make me want more sugar. And I wanted to get use to drinking something less sweet than my diet cola.
From there I branched out and tried different teas and sweeteners. Some I've liked, others I didn't - I send those boxes to work with my husband to put in the break room for anyone who wants them. Since you asked, here are some that I like:
If I want a healthy tasting brew, I make Celestial Seasoning's Decaf Green Tea. I like it best with no sweetener, which is a fact that still amazes me.
When I want a more dessert-tasting cup, I brew Celestial Seasoning's Bengal Spice. It's cinnamony good. I put the natural sweeter stevia in it.
Else I make Harvest Herb Company's Chocolate Chai rooibos or Caramel Apple rooibos. By the way, my husband makes caramel apple pancakes using some of this tea and thinly sliced apples.
If I need help unwinding at night, I brew Celestial Seasoning's Sleepy Time herbal tea. I put the natural sweetener Xylitol in it.
At our local tea room I discovered I love organic Kyoto Rose Cherry Festival green tea, and I can buy it there or order it online. It smells terrific and tastes a bit fruity. Meanwhile, I discovered I do not like blueberry or blackberry flavored teas.
Most Sundays at the coffee bar at my church I get a cup of hot water and brew China Mist's Simply Mint tea they have there, which I adore. It's good iced too. Fresh tasting, like gum.
Now I carry a tea bag packet and a sweetener packet in my purse - but not because tea rules me the way diet cola did. :) And when I want a change from teas, I opt for lemonade (I make it fresh with Splenda). I tried making fresh limeade but didn't care for that much.
I've since made additional changes in my diet for the better but I started with breaking my addiction to Diet Coke earlier this year. Oh, and I didn't gain weight as I'd feared. I actually lost a couple lbs. I now pretty much avoid colas and stuff with aspartame. The other day at a picnic I picked up a filled glass with what I thought was water and took a sip. It was actually Sprite and I couldn't believe how (overly) sweet it tasted. After a second sip I didn't want any more.
You might not like any of these tea flavors at all. I assure you, none of them taste like diet soda! But for me it was worth it to keep trying things until I found some I liked. And the best part is I no longer crave cola. Let me know if you try ditching the fizzy stuff and we can encourage each other in the comment section here. Also let me know if you've got any good tea recs for me!