According to this Time article, the average American household spends $850 per year on soft drinks. That is huge! Cutting back or even eliminating this expense could seriously pad your wallet.
It is now February. As mentioned in my Whittle Your Waist & Fatten Your Wallet post, that means it is time to give up soda! I know it’s not as easy as it sounds, so hear me out.
First, I know for many people, giving up soda is kind of the “I know I should, and someday I may, but not now” of their priority list. This post is about why it’s worth revisiting letting the carbonation go.
As summer approaches, we’ll spend more time in the sun; we will want to do our best to hydrate to avoid the sluggish feelings associated with dehydration. Soda, however, is the opposite of hydration. Replacing soda with water can lead to more energy, less fatigue, better skin, and more.
2. RELOCATION OF CASH
Saving $850 a year (or about $71 a month) frees up nearly $1k in cash flow for most families. Think of where else could that go?
You could put that money toward an incredible vacation (we went on a 10 day dream vacation for only $1,200). You could pay off your house quicker, (yes, I know, less fun than a vacation and I still recommend taking those now and then, but this win is much more of a long term game plan).
You can even take up an awesome hobby. As most will agree, $850 can go a long way; the possibilities are endless! But only when you HAVE $850 to pull from your budget.
3. HEALTH (2 TYPES OF SIX PACKS)
If the savings isn’t enough to sway you, consider this (yes, the “mom” speech) ; according to The United States Department of Agriculture, the average american consumes 150-170 pounds of sugar per year. That’s almost a 1/2 pound per day! While that may seem impossible, consider that 4 cans of 12 oz soda contains 1/4 pound of sugar! Yikes! The truth is, saving that money (or putting that money into something like non-fat milk) could help your fitness AND budget goals!
20 oz Cola contains 65 grams of sugar (Mountain Dew clocking in at 77 g).
Your average 20 oz non-fat milk is only 28.8 g, and has the benefit of protein!
COLA: $1.79 for 20 oz
MILK: $3.00 for a Gallon (128 oz)
Meaning at $3 a gallon, Milk costs about 2 cents an oz while cola costs almost 9 cents.
You may be saying to yourself, “I drink sugar-free soda, so I am fine”. Unfortunately, sugar alternatives come with their own set of problems. More and more studies are linking artificial sweeteners to the development of Metabolic Syndrome, whose symptoms include:
- Abdominal obesity (belly fat… meaning each can you drink, you make a decision of which kind of six pack you want to ‘wear’)
- High fasting glucose
- High triglycerides
- Low HDL cholesterol
- Elevated blood pressure
All around it is best just to give it up! If that really does seem impossible, gradually change it and save the difference: cut out 1 per day. This change may be the biggest difference in whittling your waist and fattening your wallet.
What do you think? What would you do with the extra $850-1k a year? Sound off in the comments!