DIET SODA AND GUM- Let me first say that I am in no way against either of these things. I will not preach about the evils that artificial sweetners do to us, or about how these are not "real" things, but fake franken-food stuffs. That is soooo not the point of this post.
What is the point, you ask?
Well. It's just another post about my newfound status as an non-emotional eater.
Since I stopped eating for reasons other than hunger a few weeks ago, I've noticed something else that felt blog-worthy.
I used to almost constantly be drinking a diet soda or chewing a piece of sugar free gum. Seriously. Almost constantly. Some days actually constantly.
I would wake up, drink diet coke until I could get breakfast, then immediately pop a piece of gum in my mouth after my meal was gone. After the gum went bad, I would either pop in a new piece, eat a snack, or drink another diet soda. Seriously. From the time that I woke up in the morning until right before bedtime, my mouth was either chewing or swallowing.
Last week I chewed only 4 pieces of gum and drank about 4 diet sodas a day. For me, this is a huge decrease.
This was not a consious move. It was just an observation that I didn't have to buy my usual three pack of gum and three 12-packs of diet soda for the week. Because I still have plenty left from the week before.
And it hit me: I was not just an emotional eater. I was an emotional drinker and chewer, too. I was using diet soda and sugar free gum as tools to get me through those non-eating hours. I wanted to constantly be eating. But because that caused weight gain, I was contantly chewing gum or drinking diet soda between meals and snacks.
I also think that this was leftover EDNOS behavior. Back in my severe ED days (about 8 years ago), I was all about the diet soda and sugar free gum. Even though I "recovered" (I put that word in quotes because my food obsession didn't actually end until recently), I kept the diet soda and sugar free gum addictions as a safety net.
Why I drank diet soda before:
(1) to fill me up between meals
(2) to enjoy as a beverage between with my food
(3) to wake up!
Why I drink diet soda now:
(1) to enjoy as a beverage with my food
(2) to wake up...
Why I chewed sugar free gum before:
(1) to keep my mouth busy between meals
Why I chew sugar free gum now:
(1) when my mouth tastes bad and I suspect bad breath.
I'm not planning to give either up. I enjoy my diet sodas and gum a lot. And now that I'm consuming them in moderation (hey - four cans a day is low for some of us!) I see no reason to be concerned about it. If I naturally continue to consume less and less of each over time until they are just occassional treats or I just no longer want them, then fine. Otherwise, they are in my life to stay. :-)
|Mom with her token Diet Coke in hand|
Plus, Mom was a Diet Coke fan and I will always think of her when I drink that specific diet soda.
What are your thoughts on diet soda and sugar free gum? Do you consume them more than you would like; are you anti- or pro-? Let me know! :-)