Monday June 4, 2007

Goodbye, Coke.

It’s been about a week since I last had a drink of Coke (or any carbonated beverage for that matter). I’m almost embarrassed to admit how hard it’s been. For reasons that can only be attributed to addiction, I’ve really been jonesing for that sweet carbonated rush. Curse you, Coke.

My parents never let me drink soda when I was a kid, and I often wonder if that contributed to my avid adoption of carbonated beverages later in life. It doesn’t help that many restaurants still don’t offer very many non-carbonated, non-caffeinated options. Almost all restaurants offer water, which is all good and fine, but it’s a dice roll — at least here in Plano — as to whether that water will be filtered or “au natural” (aka “it tastes like a dirty lake” — which, unsurprisingly, is where our local water comes from). Some places offer bottled water, which is nice but annoyingly more expensive than soft drinks (consider the cost of a second bottle of water versus free refills for soda). Not that I’m a big penny-pincher, but it does ruffle my feathers.

Should there be any question as to why I’m quitting soda, and Coke specifically, I believe this appetizing link (debunked) should paint the picture with HD clarity. Even if all of these creative applications of Coke apply only to the concetrated syrup, it’s still pretty disgusting. And I’m sure Coke is not the only soft drink that can eat a steak in a matter of days, thus influencing my decision to cut out all of Coke’s cousins and half-siblings as well.

So this is goodbye, Coke. You’re addictive, but I’m determined. If I ever see you on the street, please don’t take it personally when I punch you in the throat and run away. It’s how I cope.


Abel Rios » 5221 days ago #

Good luck, my friend. Water is water, and even if it tastes of dirty lake, it’s much better for you than Coke. It’s tough quitting cold-turkey style, so you should use Coke as a treat, after a week of swigging swamp water. Try for a month or so, and then drink one as well. You’ll notice that coke has a slightly different taste than what you’re used to.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Coke reads this and sends you a year’s supply to change your mind. In such a case, ‘u r doomd’. :D

Chris Merritt » 5221 days ago #

So this is a permanent thing? I quit carbonation for a summer one time, but I don’t think I could go the rest of my earthly life without it (to clarify, heaven will have Dr. Pepper on tap).

Richard » 5221 days ago #

Did you read the link to Snopes just after that article? Just so you know, that article has been linked to, emailed, sent in chain letters, etc., in one way or another for years. It’s a hoax, or at least parts of it are. The acids and carbonation in Coke are no more harmful than the acids in orange juice or the carbonation in club soda.

If anything, don’t drink as much Coke because it has something like the equivalent of ten teaspoons of sugar. But the other “harmful effects” are hearsay and a popular scare tactic.

Jared Christensen » 5221 days ago #

Abel – I thought about doing the slow weaning-off thing, but decided that was just prolonging the inevitable. Realistically, I may have a soft drink every so often, but I’d like it to be a rare occasion.

Chris – Join me!!!

Richard – My primary reason was just to be healthier and cut out harmful sugars, caffeine and carbonation. The article I linked just struck me as icing on the cake. It’s good to know if it’s not true, as I can be much less concerned about the scale of lasting damage done to my poor li’l internal organs.

Jack Keller » 5221 days ago #

I love that stuff, I quit the caffeine a few years back and went with Sprite, 7-up or Root Beer, I know your going no caffeine and no carbonation though so your options are more limited.

Remember Lemonade!!! Most restaurants will have lemonade (I just remembered that as I was writing).

NatalieMac » 5221 days ago #

I never became a Coke drinker because when I was little, my mom would go to the pharmacist and buy CocaCola syrup to give me whenever I had an upset stomach. Now that flavor just makes me feel nauseated.

Dr. Pepper is another story – there was a time in my life where nobody saw me without a Dr. Pepper in my hand. Then my body decided to mysteriously start having fits about caffeine, so I had to let go of caffeine, and in the interest of health, let go of sugar-drinks and carbonation too.

It was tough at first, but now I actually prefer water most of the time. I have a Dr. Pepper every couple of weeks for a treat. It’s still sooo good. Hang in there, it’s tough at first, but it gets easier. Get a slice of lemon with your water. It helps.

Keegan Jones » 5221 days ago #

Good call, man. I cut out carbonated beverages after reading the book Caffiene Blues.

josue salazar » 5221 days ago #

Rock on dude.

I’ve never liked Coke so it’s not an issue for me.

Guy » 5221 days ago #

I did it to, it was very hard. Headaches from the caffeine w/drawl were a pain (nyuck, nyuck). I recently started drinking coffee though so my addiction to the bean speed is back! But I still avoid Coke and my previous drug of choice – Dr. Pepper.

Wade Winningham » 5221 days ago #

Seems like I’m not alone in my Dr. Pepper worship. As many here, I’ve relegated my Dr. Pepper drinking to a treat once a week or so. Regardless of what you prefer, though, you really should drink a lot of water.

Abel Rios » 5221 days ago #

Abel – I thought about doing the slow weaning-off thing, but decided that was just prolonging the inevitable. Realistically, I may have a soft drink every so often, but I’d like it to be a rare occasion.

Rest assured, there will be no coke temptations at my house. So you’re free to come over any time. :D Either way man, coke will taste so much different if you decide to drink one later.

Ronny » 5221 days ago #

I feel you Jared. I know what it’s like to be a cocacolic. It’s hard to quit. But it’s so damn good!

Erik Sagen » 5220 days ago #

@Keegan: Thanks for the book recommendation. I’ll have to check that out.

@Jared: More power to you for quitting ‘cold turkey’. I’ve tried several times to stop drinking soda/coke/cola/caffeine sludge and just don’t have the willpower… yet.

The day will come however and I feel it will be sooner than later considering I’m developing a strong distaste for it, the more I ingest it.

There was a time (in high school) and my wife can attest, where I was drinking 1-2 liters a day! I’ve since cut that down to once a day or sometimes 2-3 16 oz. a week, roughly, which still isn’t good.

One nice side effect or just a result thereof is that you’ll feel healthier and lose a few pounds (not saying you need to). I managed to quit drinking a few years ago for about 6 months, a record for a “cocaholic” like me and I remember feeling a lot better off than I was.

Good luck man.

Nathan Smith » 5220 days ago #

I took a Food Science class in college, and on the first day, the professor said “If I convince you of nothing else this semester, let it be this: You should not be drinking carbonated beverages.” Apparently, the carbonation can affect bone density, among other bad things already listed.

Chris Harrison » 5220 days ago #

Heaven help me, I’m addicted to caffeine. I tried quitting once only to suffer from tremors… mood alteration… And as I type this, I’m sipping on a Jolt Cola. Ugh. Best of luck to you with this Jared. You’re a better man than I for quitting cold turkey. I sincerely hope it sticks.

Luis Garcia » 5220 days ago #

I heard that Diet Rite is pretty good. “0 carbs, 0 caffeine, 0 sodium, 0 calories, 0 compromise. “

Neill Harmer » 5219 days ago #

I feel your pain man, I just recently gave up the Dr Pepper. Wow, you’d think they put Meth and Crack in those damn sodas. It is not easy to give up.

It does get better after the first week.

Good luck!

Jared Christensen » 5219 days ago #

Thanks for the support! Rock on, y’all. Quitting has actually been smoother than I anticipated (thus far, at least). It is weird that I think about it all the time, though… :/

Travis Isaacs » 5219 days ago #

I’m with you Jared.

I’ve been coke/caffeine free since last Wednesday. Doctor’s orders, the caffeine isn’t good for my blood pressure.

Aaron Christensen » 5214 days ago #

I fully support this effort. I myself will likely not completely cut carbo bevies anytime soon, but I try to limit the intake, and drink more water than bubbly syrup. Dr. Pepper is also my drug of choice. Coke is not a temptation, though I’ll down one if nothing else is available.

I quit soda cold turkey for a couple of years once, so I know I could do it. I’m more concerned about the kidney stone an in-law passed (though it may or may not be related to his near 2-liter a day habit). Either way, saying “no” to a product of a huge corporation like Coca-Cola elicits an enthusiastic “rock on”

Tyler Lee » 5211 days ago #

Jare, I cut out the cokes a while ago, but only to improve on my amazing bod. Recently I have come back to the dark side in the form of Coke Zero. While it may still dissolve a nail in a week… its alot better for you and tastes the same, the commercials are true, pour it over some ice and its the same ol’ coke you grew up with.

Stephen » 5205 days ago #

They should try to offer some fruit juice and other drinking alternatives at places to eat, but I’m afraid they wouldn’t be very popular.

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