People are becoming more aware of the health issues related to drinking soda, but are they aware of the serious nature of soda addiction? Right now, a child finds his or her drug fix at school, at home, at parties, and at every store. Fortunately, schools have now started to make moves towards removing soda machines. However, health risks that occur while consuming this carbonated drink are occurring at alarming rates. Childhood obesity has reached all time highs in the United States by tripling in the past few decades. Unfortunately, soda does not appear in society’s mind as a serious drug.
Soda addiction is a bit different from other addictions. For one, it is introduced at a young age. Children link soda to a treat. Another issue is that unlike other drugs, there is hardly enough information on quitting the habit. In addition, the majority of people accept caffeine as a daily ingredient in their diets. Then there is of course the damage that continuous soda drinking can do the body. Weight gain, tooth decay, and dehydration are just a few of the obvious health risks. Still Americans spend around sixty-six billion dollars every year on these frizzy drinks. It is one of the most marketable products all over the world. Some switch to diet soda to avoid weight gain, but this is not addressing the core issue of dependence.
So what about soda has led so many people to dependence? Soda contains many ingredients such as carbonated water, fructose corn syrup, phosphoric acid, and of course caffeine. Soda is empty calories that only add large amounts of sugar to the body. The sugary taste satisfies a person’s sweet tooth while the drink refreshes the body. Most importantly, caffeine is an addictive drug. It creates a high in the body that rejuvenates the mind and creates momentary energy. This temporary energy will past and causes a person to “crash.” In turn, the person will drink more soda to gain another dose of energy.
Other areas that make quitting soda difficult are tolerance and gratification. Since soda consumption occurs at least once a day for the average person, tolerance for the drug builds up rapidly. For an example, tolerance builds for alcohol therefore an alcoholic will need more to feel the “high.” Another reason why soda is so hard to quit is the instant gratification. There are two types of gratification. One is instant and one is delayed gratification. Since drugs run through people’s bloodstreams quickly, its effects are immediate. However, good people hardly see the effects on their health right after quitting their first cigarette. This delayed gratification causes many people to relapse.
As far as overcoming this addiction, the soda drinker must have a strong will and patience. Some helpful tips include slowly cutting back on the number of drinks consumed each day. Another tip is going cold turkey and cutting out caffeine all at once from diets. Finally, make it rewarding to quit soda rather than punishing. People willing to quit must be aware of the withdrawals that will occur. These symptoms include but are not limited to headaches, stomach aches, anxiety, and drowsiness. These effects occur within hours after quitting the drug and can last for days. To relieve these symptoms, people often turn to drinking soda again. To help with this seek someone to share the experience. This will only strengthen motivation. Becoming more aware of the reasons why millions drink soda everyday will help to prevent occurring health risks. It is important that others realize soda as a drug dependence to make it less accessible.