TOVI's Science Communicator, Ashley Miller-Dykeman, M.A.
Swaps for Cutting Back on Soda and Sugary Drinks
Soda, fruit juice, sugary coffees, and other sugary drinks are all over the place, making it tricky to cut back. In this article, we’ll give you a few tasty swaps you can make when you’re cutting back on your sugar.
If you get bored with water...
Try infused water.
Swap sugar-filled beverages for water lightly flavored with your favorite tastes, like cucumber, strawberry, or lemon. A few slices of these fruits and vegetables can add enough flavor to quench your thirst and help satiate your craving for something different.
If you need an energy boost...
Try tea or coffee.
Sometimes all you need to really wake yourself up is a mug of something hot and refreshing! Tea and coffee are sugar-free and will help when you need a boost - just skip the creamer and sweeteners.
TOVI Tip: For the sake of your sleep, we recommend avoiding caffeine after 2 or 3 in the afternoon. Luckily, coffee and tea both have decaffeinated options!
Try sparkling water.
The bubbles in sparkling water can help you wake up and feel refreshed without any sugar! You can even buy sugar-free, flavored options to really change things up.
If you like juice in the mornings...
Try a homemade smoothie.
Juice is high in sugar, but subbing out part of your breakfast for a smoothie can help you avoid taking in lots of added sugar. While whole fruit is preferable over smoothies or juice, a freshly made smoothie still has fiber (juice doesn’t!).
TOVI Tip: Unfortunately, smoothies can also be high in sugar if they’re made from juice or have sweeteners added. We recommend sticking with a smoothie that’s made from fresh fruit and vegetables and free from common smoothie sweeteners, like honey, sweetened yogurt, and sherbet.
If you’re at a restaurant or grabbing drinks...
Try unsweetened iced tea or club soda with lime.
Something about going out to a restaurant screams “soda” and “sugary mixed drinks”. Instead, opt for unsweetened tea or a club soda with lime.
If you’re drinking alcohol, try a drink that uses a low-sugar mixer (or no mixer at all!). Tequila on the rocks with a few lime wedges, club soda with vodka and a splash of cranberry juice, dirty martinis, or an old-school gin and tonic are just a few tasty low-sugar cocktails.
You can do it!
You can make meaningful swaps to cut back on your sugar intake, we know it! If you need support while cutting back on sugar, the TOVI app is here to help. Download the TOVI app today. It's free!
Reviewed by: Dr. Tara Coletta, Ph.D. in Nutritional Biochemistry