Goodbye, bad habit!

It’s officially the beginning of summer, which means I’m starting my “get back in shape and stop being a fatty routine.” I’m already off to a rough start, since I skipped going to the gym with my work out buddy this morning because I had a cold (I promise!). But I’ve already made an important step:

Eliminating pop* from my diet. Well, mostly.

I’m going back to my rule that I had freshman and sophomore year – I’m only allowed to drink pop on the weekends. This is the best compromise I can come up with for myself – I’m of the mindset that a complete ban on any type of food is doomed for misery and failure. Drinking pop is a horrible habit of mine, and I will easily drink multiple cans a day if it’s in my apartment. If I never buy it and limit myself to the drink only if I go out on the weekend, it helps so much. When I did this last time, I lost weight without exercising at all. Of course, now I’m over 21, so to counteract a new vice I’ll be working out a little (I really only have alcohol once or twice a week, though).

Hopefully by the end of the summer I’ll be a little healthier, and shed my Oh My God Winter Is Depressing Eat Lots of Junk Food pounds.

What are your bad food habits? Are you attempting to change them, or just relishing their deliciousness?

*Also known as soda, for you weird people who use the wrong slang.


  1. says

    I’m doing something similar over the summer. I’m replacing one meal a deal that normally be fried with fruits, and commiting to work out in some way every morning.Also, pop is definitely the wrong slang. Down here in Texas we call it soda, ya’ll.

  2. says

    Mine is coffee… I will literally drink it any time of the day. To show how addicted I am to it – I will drink decaf if I have to. Which is completely useless. I use to be addicted to pop – soda to us west coasters. I started drinking blue sky cola instead of Coke, and now I only drink it maybe twice a week. Coffee though, has me by the female nads and will not let go.

  3. says

    I used to drink a lot of coke and eat a lot of foods. In my 20’s, I started to learn to avoid sugary drinks and drink only water and eat healthily. It turns out to be great for me because I weight the same as I was in college and have more physical strengths and am free of diseases, such as hypertension, diabetes, heart diseases, etc.

  4. says

    Pop?Pop?What an odd-sounding word :pYeah, I keep trying to cut back on soda. Mostly because HFCS is said to settle around your gut specifically and that’s the only part of my body I really care about trimming down.Plus the other things like the number of calories in each can/bottle and the fact that it’s so easy to drink a ton of it each day (sometimes without realizing it).I also eat too much fast food and pizza, but I’m not giving up those. Maybe I’ll try to cut back for the financial benefit, but I’m comfortable enough with my body. Which is kind of funny because one of the things I hoped to get out of the army was to get in shape, but instead I’ve just accepted that I’m not athletic and don’t have the genes to get ripped or to stay skinny, and it no longer bothers me.

  5. Hugin says

    No, we don’t. What are you, a damnyankee in disguise or something? The word is coke, with the most popular type being Dr Pepper.

  6. says

    I used to drink 24-48 ounces of soda a day and then a few years ago I started to limit myself to 1. I lost a decent amount of weight. I was down to 1 every few days/once a week and then in January I started logging calories using a site called MyFitnessPal. Actually haven’t had any since then. Course, I don’t drink alcohol either. Water, water, water. The occasion iced tea or 100% fruit juice.

  7. says

    I wish I had the soda vice to cut out, but I really rarely drink it. Once or twice a week. I love carbonation, so I’ll drink plain selzter (yes, I’m weird) or seltzer + a little fruit juice, but soda is too sweet for me most of the time.My only real food problem is desserts— ice cream + baked goods. Sad thing is, I’m damn good at making both, and after it’s made SOMEONE has to eat it. And baking cheers me up. Cooking in general sometimes does, but not usually. There is something about the specific experience of putting together a bunch of things that are unexciting on their own (flour, sugar, egg) and making something chewy and rich and delicious. It feels like magic, or alchemy. Turning something of little value into something amazing. And yes, I know it’s ACTUALLY just chemistry (and biology, when yeast is in the picture!), but that really just makes it cooler.But yea, baking isn’t so much about the EATING for me, its about the MAKING. That rush, which helps keep me happy, which tends to make me eat better….Sigh.What it comes down to for me is that I’m always going to need to work out regularly to feel happy and comfortable in my body. Junior year kicked ass with the mini-marathon training, but since getting sick killed that, I haven’t seemed to keep up exercise for more than about 6 weeks at a time. Anyhow, summer means a fresh start for me too. Have to set myself a running schedule and get started…

  8. rbray18 says

    my bad food habits are pop,candy,and fast food when i can afford,but since i’m on the poor side of poor that’s usually round the last of the month and 1st of the month.though i dislike fat/fatty foods and grease. which can be fun cause i do like pizza so not all greasy foods of course.being poor doesn’t help either since i tend to eat nothing but hamburger and chicken for at least 20 days out of a month.i also tend to eat like 6 times a day when not working which i’m sure doesn’t help.

  9. javamann says

    Beer and Fresca diet worked for me. If you’re hungry drink Fresca. Tastes so bad it kills your appetite. Beer is just for fun.

  10. says

    Pop is a big one for me too, I find that forbidding myself from buying any while I’m at work and drinking water instead helps me a lot. If it weren’t for this little cold snap right now I’d be riding my bike in the mornings after I get off of work, a form of exercise I find rather enjoyable.

  11. says

    Clearly it’s not “pop”, it’s “carbonated HFCS with artificial flavour and colour added”. Actually I call it pop too, being from Western Canada. The terms people use for “sugary carbonated beverages” are actually a great way to determine what side of an <a href="” rel=”nofollow”> isogloss they live/grow up on.

  12. says

    I always thought pop was a Canadianism. I must say I don’t like drinks that tickle my nose and make me burp, I just don’t see the appeal. My bad habit is eating what I want and never really bothering to exercise. Any extra weight goes straight to my breasts anyway. Getting ready for Boobquake 2011.

  13. Lindsay says

    I just drink 0 calorie soda… I had a bad addiction to soda, too… I bet the ingredients aren’t so great for my health, buuuuuttt…. at least there’s no calories.I’ve replaced my lunches with smoothies, too – that’s helped a lot, and it’s friggin delicious. I got one of those personal blenders, where the blender is also a cup – that way it’s easy to clean ^^

  14. unclexbob says

    My method of dealing with pop is this: it must have alcohol in it, otherwise I’m not drinking it.It seems to work. Its how I keep my svelte 32″ waist…..

  15. VanillaMilla says

    Good, so this means when I buy it, you won’t be drinkin my pop, right?

  16. says

    For useless statistics on the distribution of soda vs pop vs coke, there’s a nice little map here: http://strangemaps.wordpress.c…I find it hilarious to think that in the carolinas that soda is referred to as “dope”. They must be so confused when they go to a major city…

  17. says

    I eat far too much candy — the sugary fruity stuff. Don’t do chocolate. Drink a lot of Diet Coke (like the term “Coke” this refers to all diet soft drinks).My real vice is that I’d sooner do anything than exercise.

  18. bethsdad says

    The trick with soda is to develop a taste for diet soda. Yes, it tasted awful but you can develop a taste for it. I am so used to it that I can’t drink regular soda anymore. As far as losing weight, I don’t do anything. When my wife goes on a diet I lose weight.

  19. skepticalmedia says

    I eliminated pop a few years back and I was amazed at how much weight I lost from that alone! But there was a secondary benefit; I would usually go out for lunch, the cost of a pop really adds to the overall cost of a meal. Having water saves both money and calories. And a funny thing happened… my taste for sweet things was reduced; cakes and candy and other things no longer looked as appetizing… which further helped me to reduce my weight. I no longer crave sweets as much as I previously did. Try cutting out pop completely for a month or two. It gets easier over time. Essentially visualize pop as a “liquid candy bar”.

  20. Rhino_of_Steel says

    If you really want to cut back the kilograms, go on what I’m calling the “Too Poor to Eat” diet. Simply get to the point where $20/week is your food budget and I guarantee the pounds will melt away no matter what your level of activity. I’ve gone from a 42 waist to a 30 using this method.My bad habit is being on that and the goal is to stop that terrible thing and actually remember what feeling full is like.

  21. FrankT says

    Goodbye, bad habit indeed! Especially, since you are moving to the West Coast. We don’t drink “pop” or “soda” all day out here. Just coffee booze and air. :-)

  22. says

    After a fun experience with kidney stones, I cut out soda, fast food, and caffeine almost completely. It’s amazing what some pain can do for your dieting habits. Besides the fear of kidney stones, experimentation with different kinds of juice, vitamin water, etcetera helped fill the void soda left in my drinking habits. Who knew peach and mango tasted so good together? Lindsay has a point with the smoothies too, delicious and nutritious. Also, I call it soda here in Greenwood, IN.

  23. says

    Nothing deep-fried for me and helluva careful when it comes to chocolate. Mhm … sweet, luscious chocolate with hazelnuts. *drool*Also, they’re called softdrinks here. Get with the times, old people. ;-)

  24. says

    Over here in the Untied Kingdom we were calling it pop long before it came in cans, and judging by old movies it was called soda pop in Uncle Sam’s backyard. And for the record, soda waters preceded pop when it was found that the minerals contained within were beneficial to health.…As to eating vices, I’ve never smoked, but I can find myself chain eating without realising, especially if I’m surfing or watching the tellybox. That packet of salty snacks I was going to make last all week mysteriously disappears before an evenings TV viewing has elapsed…… it’s a miracle!

  25. oc says

    /agree. This is all probably stuff people already know, but I’ll just recite what I do…It’s not surprising how much you can stretch rice and oats to get by on a budget. Oats, being high in soluble and insoluble fiber, will provide long lasting energy. Great thing to help start the day. Do a tiny omelette to go with that: 1 egg, 1 mushroom, 1 pearl onion, garnish with cheddar. (Check the ingredient list. Stay away from “modified milk ingredients”.) The fat and protein in the egg will go a long way, and the high selenium content in the egg and chromium content in the onion are supposed to help with your metabolism. Finish that with a piece of fruit. Bananas, for example, are a very cheap source of potassium. Try to eat as soon as you wake up to get that metabolism kickstarted.If your profession revolves around your PC, try this:- schedule a task to pop up a command prompt echoing a reminder to eat something. That “something” is a portion-controlled quantity of some healthy choice food, like almonds, dates, grape tomatos, etc. Aim for smaller clusters of portions, and have it remind you every 2 hours. Try not to go more than 4 hours without a tiny snack. Before long you’ll find you don’t have much stomach capacity (so you couldn’t overeat even if you wanted to), and you never feel like you have to have a real meal unless you go without a snack for too long.Use the rice as a base for a moderate mid-day meal, again with some protein and complex carbs/fiber. Curried rice is great, because the tumeric in curry powder is supposed to boost metabolism and act as an antioxidant.Late in the day, go with a small serving of protein, fat, and a small amount of complex carbs and fiber. A chicken salad with olive oil vinegarette and a half glass of red wine works great to get you through the night and sleep well. The olive oil and red wine are supposed to be super helpful in promoting HDL cholesterol and fat-burning.Stay away from refined sugars and starches. If you want a treat, try to make it small, and have it following a protein. The protein is supposed to slow the absorbtion of the sugars. The main point is to avoid blood sugar spikes.Then for exercise. Try to only hit each muscle once a week, and absolutely always take each set to to point of muscle failure… where no matter how much you may command it, you can’t get another rep out. Repeat that for at least 3 sets of at least 6 reps (adjust weight accordingly), and try to split all muscle groups into 3 different workouts distributed across the week. A good round of circuit training can generate comparable heart rates as any conventional cardio.I think that’s about it… Hope this helps people meet their goals.

  26. says

    I have the horrible habit of eating right before bed, which tends to result in poor sleep. I NEED to stop it, but dangit, it’s hard. ;-;

  27. haleyk says

    The only thing I drink is water, and lots of it. Like two liters a day. I’m otherwise a terrible eater; today I had a yogurt for breakfast and a mini bag of chips for a late dinner. I usually only eat a small breakfast so that I can take my medicine, and then a snack around dinnertime. The secret to having no appetite and a 24 inch waist? ADHD medications and chronic illness. Could be worse, I’m a college student allergic to caffeine. (I can handle milk chocolate, thank dog)

  28. olifantje says

    Cigarettes… oh how I love them, but to keep it under control: only when I drink coffee or alcohol, which means I usually smoke less than 20 cigarettes p/week.I don’t drink pop/soda. I eat meat twice a week max. I generally don’t buy ready made stuff. I am always amazed with the amount of sugar and salt added to ready made pasta sauce. It’s so much tastier, healthier and even cheaper to prepare it yourself.

  29. Frank says

    I must say I would recommend giving up pop/soda/soft drink* completely – it’s not just the sugar, etc, but too much carbonated water can cause kidney problems. I find I drink mostly water with the occasional coffee and wine. *the generic term in Australia

  30. broggly says

    Yeah, we Australians only use the term Soda for unflavoured carbonated water.

  31. Equinox says

    I found I could cut down my pop drinking by getting it part diet. At McDonalds or whatever I would get (even by asking for it) a mixuture of 75% pop with 25% diet pop. That tasted about the same, and after a while I asked for 50/50. Now I just drink diet pop – the regular kind tastes too much like syrup. Plus, I calculated out the volume of dry sugar in each can of pop, and compared it to eating a bowl of lifesavers candy each day. Ouch! that’s a lot of sugar!Love your blog! P.S. Have you seen:

  32. says

    The big problem with fizzy drinks in the US is all the HFCS. They taste so much nicer when they’re just made with plain old refined sugar! Of course, that means that a lot of Europeans (at least ones I know) drink far less of such concoctions when they’re in North America.

  33. A-M says

    I am lucky that I don’t like pop! That’s what we call it in northern England too, how odd. The two occaisions I was in the States, it tasted even grosser than it does here. Nor do I have a taste for coffee, tea or alcohol so when it comes to drinks I have no worries. I’m a boring water kinda girl.Chocolate is my downfall though. I can’t remember the last day I didn’t have any at all. How depressing!

  34. says

    The last few months have brought about significant changes to my diet. I’m not terribly happy with said changes, but they are for the benefit of my personal health.I’ve more or less removed all “pop” as you call it ;p (It’s soda or ‘coke’ in the south) from my diet. I slipped up when we went to see Iron Man 2 and had a root beer. Mostly I’m trying to limit anything with corn syrup in it, which is incredibly difficult. I’ve also cut out all unhealthy snacking, trading the potato chips and candy for smaller portions of crackers, peanuts, cheese, and fruit.And a few months ago I also took up Kung Fu, which, while I believe is slowly killing me is also helping me lose weight. :D

  35. says

    And if you visit Australia you will drink ‘Soft Drink’ on the weekends on the East coast but ‘Cool Drink’ on the West coast. Both are, of course, pop.

  36. says

    I thought pop was a Canadian term. Apparently not. I just started changing my eating habits in February with immense success. I cut back my portion sizes and critiqued what I ate. I used a website,, and input everything I ingested for 3 weeks. Once I saw where the calories were going, it was far easier for my logical brain to cut them back (eg. bagel and cream cheese – love ’em, easy, but 300 calories!). And because of a permanent injury, I am only able to walk, and even then not for long and not fast. But cutting back portion sizes and walking on average 30 min/day, I’ve lost 25 pounds in 3 months. Granted, I put on about 60 with horrible eating habits through undergrad, but I’ve changed my lifestyle.

  37. Toad says

    An easy way for me to avoid foods I don’t want to consume is to think about their ingredients and/or creation.Imagine your soda as first a glass of water. Then someone takes a heaping glob of high-fructose corn syrup and plops it in the glass. Next, someone else takes a hose and pumps some carbonation into the syrup-water. After that, another hose adds the artificial colors and a trace amount of flavoring.Would you stir that up and drink it?When I think about milk, I imagine some stainless steel machine suckling the bloody, infected teat of some overweight, over-milked heifer. Haven’t touched milk in years.This sort of thought process has led me to absolutely treasure fruits and veggies.

  38. says

    Beer is my vice. Not only is it bad for me but its very expensive! I can’t just drink the cheap stuff either, its gotta be the good stuff!

  39. says

    I used to live near a weird soda / pop hybrid zone. To the west and north of me, it’s pop, and the south and east it’s soda. But there is a line where it is ‘soda pop.’ And damn it’s a bubbler, not a water fountain or drinking fountain. Recommended beers. Spotted Cow – New Glarus BreweryBlonde DoppelBock – Capital BreweryDelirium Tremens#9 from magic hat.Usual rule of thumb- If you can’t see through it, it’s probably good. Remember, in heaven there is no beer and that is why we drink it here.

  40. oc says

    You can tweak this habit to your benefit. Instead of baked goods, branch out into cooking healthy. Experiment with stirfry’s, etc.

  41. ValH587 says

    You might try finding places around town that wouldn’t mind a plate of baked goods as a ‘Thank you’ for their service. I’m thinking of a youth shelter, animal shelter, homeless shelter, women’s center, or something of the like. That way you could get the rush of cooking, and feel great about brightening someone else’s day too.

  42. ValH587 says

    Just be careful with this, a lot of the really cheap foods are also really terrible for you because they’re so processed with who-knows-what in them. Stick to foods that are decently natural. (not pork, chicken, beef mash-ups. ew.)

  43. oc says

    The problem with soda/pop/etc is that you’re basically paying for either empty calories, or a bit of watered-down sweetened acid. Either way it’s bad for you, and eats a hole in the budget. There are so many good ways to spruce up just plain water. Add a spoonful of applecider vinegar to water or tea to give it a refreshing kick. The vinegar actually helps with digestion too. Another easy one is to pre-prep iced tea, toss in sliced lemons and some honey or maple syrup to sweeten. These are all things that you can keep easily at a desk at work too.

  44. oc says

    Aye. Processed foods are so ubiquitous because the actual cost of all the crap they throw in is negligible, but they charge just enough to undercut the “real” foods. Sugar for instance is monumentally cheap and makes foods popular because we’re genetically programmed to like the taste of high-energy foods. However, if you stick to the border of the store and avoid the central aisles, you’ll do pretty well with getting high quality nutrients without the crazy refined-sugar energy spikes. Another trick is to know which fresh produce is in season at each time of year. At the right time of year, you can get peppers for <$1/lbs, but at the wrong time of the year, it’ll cost upwards $5/lbs because those peppers were either hydroponically grown in greenhouses, or imported from mexico. Which reminds me.. certain central-american countries have a reputation for using excessive chemical pesticides to control those giant super-tropic bugs, and human-waste fertilizers because they’re cheap and readily available (and full of the junk people eat.. like drugs/etc).

  45. Tara says

    My bad “food” habit is alcohol. Not in the unhealthy drinking-to-forget alcoholic sort of way, but in the having a love affair with delicious local microbrews sort of way. But, they’re delicious, so I have no plans to cut back. :PI might consider cutting back on my red meat consumption though. I got a grill for christmas and have been practicing grilling a few times a week since then. Mmmm…

  46. John Sherman says

    Dear Jen:What is this? “Happy Days”? Who calls it pop any more? Well, live and let live I always say. My bad food habit is food. Period. I love it. I eat it. I over indulge at every turn. Here’s the problem. If you over indulge in alcohol or drugs or tobacco, you STOP. And then you get better. If you over indulge in food and STOP, then you wither away and die. This is Life being ironic.

  47. Lori says

    That’s what my family has always done. Coke, Dr. Pepper, Pepsi, etc. Unless you need a blanket term, then it’s soft drink. I’m in TN, btw. ;)

  48. hippiefemme says

    I don’t think I could handle giving up soda completely, at least not any time soon. Maybe I’ll start drinking Jones Soda again so that I won’t be able to afford loads of it; a four-pack of Jones Soda bottles is nearly the same price as a twenty-four-can-case of the local knockoff brand.

  49. L.Long says

    Here is your main problem….and shed my Oh My God Winter Is Depressing Eat Lots of Junk Food pounds. …Winter is depressing???!!!! Blasphemy!!!! No wonder you gain during this time your KEI is unbalanced by the evil thought.SNOW!!! white covering the forest smothering sounds for quit walks thru the forest with my 3yr-old G’Daughter. Snowmen marching thru the yard. Skiing down gentle slopes(mostly on my face or butt but who cares.) Sliding from side to side on the highway, what thrills!!! Pull a 50lb 3yr-old behind you for an hour and watch the pounds melt away. Chopping wood for the fireplace’s lovely roasting flames…That will get a few pounds under control.With the right frame of mind your KEI(CHI???) will be balanced and your body will rejoice with less gain!!!

  50. says

    “The two occaisions I was in the States, it tasted even grosser than it does here.” – that’d be the High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). I swear the American manufacturers put it in pretty much all processed foods.

  51. Pablo says

    Alternatively, you DON’T develop a taste for it, and basically wean yourself off.That’s what I did to quit drinking Mountain Dew. I was a 4-can a day MD drinker, so switched to Diet MD. Since I can’t stand it, it only took about a month of that for me to quit altogether.Now I drink Crystal Lite packets in my water (10 Cal/bottle). Ultimately, I have ended up going with the high-caffeine version, but if they actually made the Wild Strawberry without that, I would do it instead, because that’s the flavor I like best.I lost 30 lbs by switching to Diet MD, gained a little of it back for a steady state, and have been losing weight slowly for the last couple of months due to having an 18 mo old son who distracts me a lot during mealtimes, so I end up not eating as much.To get off soda, I recommend switching to a diet version that you don’t like very much, and then weaning off it.

  52. Quatguy says

    In all of Canada it is called “Pop”. You can always tell the Americans in the crowd when they as for a “soda”. It is a dead give-away.

  53. Allison says

    Good luck with the no-pop program. Pop (I call it soda) no matter what it’s called, is TERRIBLE for you and turns DIRECTLY TO BELLY FAT. It’s nasty stuff and messes with your brain, too. I know you know all this because you’re working to cut it out, but I just have to add that when I was quitting, it helped me to read about all the lab experiments having to do with pop and how crazy bad for you it is. So go you! And take it from one who knows – once you cut it out, you don’t miss it.

  54. Eric Dutton says

    A couple of my friends did the same thing and they both lost an astonishing amount of weight. They were both quite overweight and obsessed with . . . soft drinks, though. But, yeah, that was the only change they made.

  55. IHP says

    Since graduating and having disposable income (awesome!) I have gained 10 pounds a year mostly due to the evil of fast food. I can afford to just order a number, it’s so efficient. No more dollar menu or taking minutes to order. This also means I can afford soda with my meal. I keep telling myself how unhealthy eating fast food 7 times a week is and that I have to change. But then I am lazy/rushed in the morning and when it becomes lunch time at work I want to escape…which sends me to the various fast food establishments.The worst part is I know I can lose weight. 2 weeks in China (eating less, eating more vegetables, and not having fast food) equals losing 5-10 for me. And yet I fall back into my evil fast food habit when I return.

  56. oc says

    The modern western lifestyle is killing us slowly. We have to rush rush rush to be competitive, but in doing so we end up reaching for convenience foods and sacrifice sleep and happiness in order to keep up. We’d be healthier and happier if we didn’t have to compete so much, but keeping people busy and unhappy keeps them needing some distraction (sports/games/etc) to help them relax, and keeps them too preoccupied to cause any trouble.

  57. Pablo says

    The number 1 cause of death is birth. While everyone’s milage may vary, apparently a lot of people enjoy their “modern western lifestyle.” What is the alternative? The good old days of struggling to find enough food to eat? The “modern western lifestyle” has lots of good in it, and compared to alternatives, is very luxurious. Yes, some things we enjoy doing may cause us to die earlier than we would if we weren’t doing them, but then again, is it worth it to not enjoy yourselves as much? I don’t judge people in that regard. A lot of things people enjoy doing are detrimental to their health. There’s a tradeoff, and everyone has their own threshold for what is acceptable.

  58. says

    Your dentist will appreciate your decision. Even diet soda (“pop” is your father) causes accelerated jaw bone loss and pockets of decay beneath your gum line.Besides, Coke and Pepsi are Evil Empires.

  59. oc says

    While birth may be a prerequisite for death, I wouldn’t call it a cause of death. I may have errored in describing it in such generic terms as “modern western lifestyle”, but I don’t feel the sentiment is in any way incorrect. The advances we’ve made in every facet of life allow us to live better and enjoy more things, but the costs imposed on people are sub-optimal compared to what we could achieve if “the system” were better managed. I’m referring in specific to the factors driving us towards unhealthy convenience foods vs. healthy foods (convenient or otherwise).As population and technology increase, it gets incrementally more difficult to find a need to employ more people when efficiencies of scale are so much more worthwhile to a company’s finances. Things such as this drive people to rush through life and enduring stress so that they can justify being selected to fill a role, and oftentimes people find themselves putting in extra hours to complete tasks for which they receive no direct benefit.Speaking for myself, I firmly believe it doesn’t have to be this way. Consider a hypothetical situation: 5 companies all have some division of globla marketshare for a particular product, but given their ability to implement solutions, all their products are essentially identical. The only time it matters is when one comes up with something new, but before long that gets replicated as well. In some cases, the knockoffs are better than the official product (I’m thinking in specific of reports of handbag and microchip factories in China.) So, in effect the global potential revenue is divided across 5 companies all doing the same thing, and likely employing their own sets of people to reinvent the same wheel. In an ideal system, this replication of labour could be eliminated, while still yielding the same product and the same total revenue to be divided the same way amongst the employees, yet each employee would only have to put in about 1/5 of the effort. Granted, this presents a simplified view of the problem. Issues like freemarket competition and price controls would need to be addressed.Certainly I would expect that achieving the same results in a smarter, more efficient way which affords people the same personal income at a fraction of the personal effort would lead to a more luxurious lifestyle. However, capitalism doesn’t care about that, and anyone in control of a system would likely prefer to maintain a state of affairs that prevents people from posing a threat to the benefits they enjoy by being on top.

  60. Steve says

    Jen, I have different metabolism than you as I am male and nearing 60. But, several years ago I started drinking Sam’s choice clear water, sold at WalMart. I think it tastes great, and it has no sugar, no sodium, no calories. My wasteline and the rest of my body improved soon after. I had been drinking multiple pops/sodas per day until that.

  61. says

    Pop is what weasels do. Just this Californian’s 2 cents. :-)Seriously, though, my worst food habit is making exceptions. “Oh, I’m on vacation, so I’ll live it up.” “Oh, I’m not feeling well, so I don’t have to work out.” Even when I’m out of town, I need to still eat healthily. And when I’m sick I can still do yoga or something else low-impact. It’s better to keep the routine no matter what!

  62. says

    I often attribute my lack of pop drinking to my “thinness” – however I could still work on alcohol drinking. *Notice my correct usage of the word pop?

  63. Frank says

    Why buy bottled water? what’s wrong with water from the tap (faucet)? You can always buy a filter if it’s too hard.We’re very fortunate in Melbourne (Australia) that our drinking water is superb, but I’ve drunk water all around the world – it’s cheap too.

  64. gelf says

    I used to drink pop, then I started drinking Coke – now I’m onto diet soda. But only before noon – trying to cut out the caffeine altogether, but diet Sunkist is evil. It sucks you in with a low level of caffeine and no calories. Pretty soon you’re slurping down 6 cans a day and not sleeping.

  65. noelleyb says

    You know, a lot of %100 juice beverages have more calories than soda. It’s just fructose.

  66. noelleyb says

    I’m lactose intolerant, but only found out as an adult, so pretty much any dairy product is a no-no. I actually prefer the taste of fake milk, (oat, hemp, rice, almond, hazelnut, there are tons to try) and WholesSoy makes a darn good yogurt, but there is no believable fake cheese that I can find. My sister makes the best mac and cheese ever, and it’s torture to smell it and know that if I partake, I can look forward to a world of pain!One thing my sister and I do for our junk food cravings is to make big batches of our own junk food with more wholesome ingredients and freeze them for later. This is a great summer project for college kids too. We’ve made pizza rolls from scratch, with whole wheat crust and quality stuff inside, gyoza, hot pocket things with various veggie-centric fillings, and so on off days, we can just microwave something from the freezer without any guilt!Oh, and as you’re moving to Seattle, Jen, you should try locally made Dry Soda. It’s flavorful and very slightly sweet, but not sugary at all the way every other soda out there is.

  67. St.PaulChica says

    I’m setting myself up for an almost everyday running routine and trying to run a 5k or something for the summer. Hopefully I can drop the 3-4 lbs I gained this winter and maybe a couple more. Worked for me before. Funny thing about the pop is that when I tried to lose weight last summer I actually turned to Coke zero (which i normally hate) to satisfy my ridiculous sugar cravings. I can identify with whoever posted about making baked goods. I love it, but I can only do it when I can give them away. Otherwise I tend to eat every delicious morsel before seeing them go bad.

  68. says

    As an aside, there’s a Third Way in the great pop vs. soda debate. In the northeast they call it tonic. Though with some Boston accents it comes out as “tawnk.”

  69. says

    Same (in my experience) in the UK, except soda only means soda water, not just any old carbonated water, and even then only usually when talking about it as a mixer, eg ‘whisky and soda’. I think you’d get a confusing array of interpretations and confusion if you ever just asked for soda, including some people a USian interpretation because of all the US cultural influences.

  70. Denice says

    I had to quit soda. I was drinking WAY too much of it. I quit both soda and caffeine at the same time, though, and for a few weeks I was a zombie. Now I can’t drink any form of caffeine without a severe, almost dangerous, rush. My tolerance for caffeine has gotten so low that decaf coffee (which still has a small amount of caffeine in it, despite the name) will keep me up til about 4am if I have it in the afternoon. I’m still a slave to pizza, though. Food addictions are both plentiful and all-consuming, no pun intended.

  71. says

    I don’t know where you are, but that sounds like what I’ve usually heard in most parts of the UK. That said, I’ve heard ‘pop’ from older people in several bits or northern England.

  72. salbro1 says

    Born and raised in Oregon, and I never regularly heard “soda” till I moved East.

  73. Sal Bro says

    Uck, for me it was easier to develop a taste for unsweetened carbonated water. La Croix comes in a can and has a few different flavors–it’s very refreshing, and it doesn’t stimulate appetite or contain calories.

  74. Terabytes says

    Soda is slang? Everyone knows what soda is, only Canadians and mid-westerners are familiar with ‘pop’. That makes ‘pop’ the slang. Come to New Jersey and ask for for your pop in a sack and see what it gets you. (<;

  75. Jo says

    The full term is “soda-pop”.Therefore pop and soda are both slang words. But pop is the correct one ;)

  76. Thomas Cox says

    Decided to jump in on this after I read your post last week. So far, it kind of sucks. Of course, I also have a lot of soda in this house. But I really should kick the habit again.

  77. moxicity says

    Bah… I don’t get the soft drink thing. I live in Eastern Europe, so my eating habits are somewhat different because of that, but also: sodas are pretty nasty.Seriously, I KNOW that they’re a mess of “fake” components and I can *taste* the disgusting aspartame and artificial colouring, which is probably a psychological thing more. STILL. It’s completely gnarly! I drink real juice or water – it’s much more satisfying taste-wise and probably hydrates you WAY better. I’m not sure how legitimate it was, but I read a study or some conclusion that it’s “okay”, or rather the acceptable amount, to consume about 6 spoonfuls of processed sugar a day for women. I vaguely recall that article stressing that sugars are actually really bad for your heart health, but I may be remembering wrong.So what the hell – why should I drink something that, in my totally subjective experience, only tastes okay with junk food, and which is so completely bad for me? About the junk food – I occasionally don’t eat it for months, and maybe once or twice a month get a hamburger and fries. Not because I’m a control-freaky health nut, mind you – I simply live in a place where fast food places are not exactly common, and also because the food tastes incredibly fake, though momentarily satisfying when I’ve not had it for a while.Anyway… that was my rant for the day! Oh, and I’m completely not attacking people who prefer soda – no, please don’t take it that way. I’m kind of just… flail-splaining personal preferences. I get the appeal, on some level. Sodas CAN taste good, but my knowledge of what goes in there makes it untasty and vile for me.

  78. Jess says

    I started putting on weight when I got my first desk job and thus decided to try to change things. I tried cutting back on calories and eating healthier but didn’t lose any weight after 6 months of careful eating. I then tried excersize with moderate reduction in calories since I wanted to eat enough to make it through workouts but 6 months later I was at the same place I started (although now with a slightly more toned belly). So now I figure my body is going to do whatever it wants so I’m going to enjoy eating for awhile and see what happens.

  79. says

    I gave up my soda habit years ago, with no regrets. We have some in the fridge for guests at all times, but I only very rarely have any, and it’s usually root beer (which I hated as a kid – go figure). Anyway, my addiction has been Smucker’s Natural Peanut Butter. It started innocently enough, but turned into a daily gorge. Besides my dessert-whore food attitude and love of craft beers, I can’t do much exercising because I have Fibromyalgia. My muscles don’t operate properly and I fatigue and flare up with very little activity. My fat pants are tight and I’m feeling like a whale. I wrote a blog post about it yesterday:…Anyway, I’m hoping that counting calories using Calorie Count will help me make wiser food decisions and remind me to move around a little more if I can. I will try to walk more and squeeze in little things like stairs and mall-walks at lunchtime to help me burn a calorie or two here and there.

  80. LS says

    Soda is the appropriate term damnit!Dr. Pepper is my one vice. Given that I don’t indulge in…basically anything else, I let myself drink Dr. Pepper until diabetes sets in.

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