America, we have a problem.
The average American consumes 44.7 gallons of soda each year. Some families drink more soda than water. With such a large-scale of consumption, it is crucial to understand the effects of soda consumption. According to research, soda has been linked to dehydration, kidney problems, fatty liver disease, and obesity. Any one of these effects is enough to persuade soft drink consumers to find a healthier alternative. This is why we compiled a top 10 list of soda alternatives that can help you kick this unhealthy habit and lead a healthier life.
Take your green tea on the rocks
Research has shown that regular consumption of green tea can prevent various health ailments, such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity. This zero calorie, antioxidant packed drink can be served chilled on the rocks in its natural form, or with a spoonful of honey stirred in for the sweet tooths.
Spruce up your hydration with fruit flavored water
If plain water is too boring for you, try adding some refreshing fruit flavored water into your diet. This fun and creative beverage is a relatively new trend that anyone can follow at home. By simply adding a few slices of your favorite fruit, veggies, and even a few mint leaves, you can create an invigorating drink that’s packed with fun colors and flavor.
A glass of red wine is what the doctor prescribed
If you’re choice of drink is a Vodka Red-bull or a Jack and Coke, you might want to consider scaling back and unwinding with a simple glass of red wine. When consumed in moderation, studies show that red wine can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke. This is mostly due to the antioxidant content in red wine. When looking for red wine to purchase, try a brand without the additives or sulfates in order to reap the most benefits.
Chocolate and vanilla almond milk
If you’re looking for a light and creamy beverage to indulge in, try adding some flavored almond milk into your diet. Not only is almond milk delicious, it can also be consumed as an alternative to dairy milk. It’s cholesterol free, unlike dairy milk, and fortified with calcium and vitamin d, giving you some of the same health benefits. Look for light, or sugar-free options if you are trying to cut back on sugar.
Put your $300 juicer to good use.
If the juicer you received last christmas is collecting dust in your garage, now is the time to put it to use. By juicing fruit and vegetables, you reap nearly all of their health benefits without any of the additives store-bought juices contain.
Don’t skip out on the “immortal health elixir” (also known as Kombucha)
This ancient chinese beverage is currently in the media spotlight for its astounding health benefits. Kombucha is basically black tea that has been fermented with the help of sugar. The healthy bacteria responsible for the fermentation process is feeds off of the sugar, which in turn creates a carbonated beverage consisting of vinegar, probiotics, enzymes and various vitamins. The health benefits have been linked to weight loss, better digestion, energy and detoxification.
Keep your coffee clean and simple
Studies show that moderate coffee consumption can actually be good for you. One or more cups of coffee a day has been linked to a decreased risk of alzheimer’s, colon cancer and diabetes. In order to get the most out of these benefits, it’s best to keep your cup of joe plain and simple. This means keeping the artificial creamers and white sugar out of your coffee, and swapping them with natural creamers (and maybe even a sprinkle of honey).
Boost your probiotics with a yogurt drink
Forget the spoon, you can drink your yogurt. This protein filled power drink can be plain, soy, or greek, giving a variety of options for yogurt lovers. Yogurt drinks can burn fat and boost your metabolism, making them a smarter option than a traditional can of soda soft drink.
Feeling Tropical? Try some coconut water
Coconut water is the ultimate thirst quencher. This naturally sweet and refreshing drink is packed with antioxidants, electrolytes and B-vitamins. This nutrient rich beverage has endless health benefits that range from aiding in weight loss, resolving acne, curing hangovers, and reducing blood pressure. The low-calorie and low-fat content in coconut water allows for generous consumption without the fear of weight gain.
Get creative with homemade fruit smoothies
If you’re looking for a drink that can satisfy your sweet tooth without the artificial flavors, try a delicious and healthy fruit smoothie. A fruit smoothie can act as both a soda and dessert substitute. The best part of making a smoothie in your very own kitchen is that you can control what goes into it. The endless ingredients you can choose from can even make this a fun experience. Instead of making a traditional fruit-and-water smoothie, try throwing in some yogurt for richness, coconut water for flavor, and some chia seeds for protein.