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Breaking up with sugary soda pop

Dec. 10, 2012 @ 12:00 AM

Drinking one 20-ounce bottle of soda daily for a year can pack on 25 extra pounds! But when the NYC Board of Health banned sugary drinks in containers larger than 16 ounces, special-interest groups insisted that sugar in soda isn't to blame for the country's obesity woes. Now, a super-size serving of three studies should quiet that debate once and for all.

The first proves that for folks with a predisposition to obesity, drinking sweet soda ramps up the body's already heightened inclination to gain weight. The other two showed that if you help kids and teens break their soda habit by giving them water or no-cal drinks instead, they gain less weight than soda chuggers. Ready to say so long to sodas? Here's how.

Get hip to your habit.

1. Where do you drink sodas? In front of some digital screen? With your meals? Write down every time you have one.

2. What makes you want a soda? The sugar and caffeine boost? Feeling parched? Realize that sugar isn't a good way to energize yourself or quench your thirst.

Now break up with soda.

1. Try our 30/10 routine. After every 30 minutes at your desk or a digital screen, walk for 10 (around the house, in the yard, in place.) And always drink water after your walk.

2. Stock the fridge with water flavored with a squeeze of lemon, crushed basil or mint. Serve that (or coffee and tea) with your meals. And carry some water with you when you're on the go.

Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Medical Officer at the Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute. For more information go to www.RealAge.com.

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