Okay, so here is my health rant. I wake up every morning and one of the first thoughts on my mind is "When can I have a Dr. Pepper?" I try to drink only one a day, so I try to plan the perfect time to enjoy it. I usually don't make it to lunch before I have to drink a Dr. Pepper. Since I drink it so early, usually by the evening I'm ready for another, so lately I've been having one then, also. And I wonder why my baby weight has stopped coming off! So today, after I had my morning DP, I decided I needed a reality check. I think I have an addiction, and I'm not okay with that. So I looked up the health effects of drinking soda, because I knew that if I could read the info on it, that would help me not drink Dr. Pepper. I'm sure we all know that there are no health benefits to drinking soda, though my mind makes me think it makes me relax and feel good. We are also all aware of the outrageous amount of sugar in these drinks and how that leads to weight gain, diabetes, lack of energy, etc. What you may not know is how much calcium soda robs from your body...very bad for children (affects their bone growth and makes them more susceptible to bone fractures) and people with a family history of osteoporosis or other bone problems (that would be me!). So why would anyone drink something that is so bad for you? Well, it tastes good and I like it! But no more. I want Ava to grow up thinking that water is what you drink, and other things, like sodas and caffeinated sweet teas (they're worse than soda!) are unhealthy. I'm sure I've offended some, because just about everyone I know drinks soda and tea, including my husband. But this is my blog and this is what I think! Also, don't think that drinking diet drinks or using saccharin in your tea is a way to get by. Artificial sweeteners are not good for you at all. I have never heard or read anything good about using artificial sweeteners. Even splenda, which many people think is okay, is not. It is a derivative of sugar with chlorine added to it (do you think it's healthy to drink pool water?) and it was discovered when some chemists were trying to create a new pesticide. Doesn't sound like a healthy alternative to me. Anyway, below are a few sites that list some of the health effects of soda and artificial sweeteners. Check them out if you want, there are plenty more out there. I had to finally make myself look at this stuff, because I have known how bad Dr. Pepper is for me, I just haven't wanted to admit it. Now that I know, I have no excuse for continuing to drink it. I'll still decorate with it, though, and I will always remember my love for Dr. Pepper.