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Put Down Your Sugary Fizzy Drinks And Get Seltzer Water Instead!

Put Down Your Sugary Fizzy Drinks And Get Seltzer Water Instead!

Seltzer Water. You either love it or you hate it. But is it actually good for you? After all, it is water. It just happens to be fizzy. This is the result of carbonation, or the process of pressurizing carbon dioxide gas. It turns out, Seltzer Water does have its pros, but it also has cons; some fizzy water contains carbonic acid (this is what creates the bubbles) that has been rumored to eat away your tooth enamel. But do not misunderstand: if you are choosing between Seltzer and Soda, that acidic water is still going to be a better choice.

How much do Americans spend on soft drinks?

While we all know how expensive our coffee habits can be, it is just as important to monitor what we spend on other things, such as soft drinks. The average American household spends about $850 a year for soft drinks. This adds up to an unbelievable $65 billion on soft drinks alone! Now remember that, on average, a can of soda (12 oz) contains about 39 grams of sugar. Spending billions and billions on soft drinks equates to spending billions and billions on our own poor health and deteriorating teeth.

Why Seltzer is a better choice than Soda?

First, let’s start with sugar. While 12 fluid ounces of soda has nearly 40 grams of sugar, the same amount of Seltzer has 0. There are also zero calories, while soda cannot say the same. It’s also a more economical option. With Americans spending almost $900 a year on soda, Seltzer can help save some of that money for more important things. In fact, Seltzer was first introduced specifically as a cheap alternative to mineral water (more on this later) and is still chosen for its price tag, time after time.

Even if you love regular, non bubbly water, you may find yourself craving the little bubbles found in soft drinks and carbonated water. Some people crave carbonated drinks and immediately grab one without questioning where that craving came from. It turns out, when our bodies want food and our blood sugar is low, our brain signals to us that we want something carbonated because we know it has lots of sugar. However, we would be better off eating something with natural sugar and some fiber , like an orange or even an apple, because it would gradually increase our blood sugar rather than a dangerous spike, and it would fill us up more successfully than all those empty calories. Regardless, if you just can’t shake the craving for a fizzy drink, a clear, bubbly, zero calorie Seltzer would be a better choice than a dark, unhealthy, syrupy soda.

So What Seltzer Water actually is?

When it comes to the label, Seltzer Water looks exactly like regular bottled water, showing zeros across the board. But if you’re looking for a fizzy water with vitamins, you want to find mineral water.

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Sparkling Mineral Water also comes from a natural spring, so it automatically contains various minerals like salts. The bubbles are naturally occurring (unless the specific bottler adds more, such as San Pellegrino). While Seltzer Water can be added to alcohol, think Vodka Soda, Mineral Water would be enjoyed on its own.

Additionally, Mineral Water will give you a little more nutritional bang for your buck . A 6.5 oz of Sparkling Mineral Water has 0 calories and sugars, but contains 2mg of sodium and 26.9 mg of calcium [1].

Why Seltzer Water can be considered as healthy?

While regular water is still a healthier choice than fizzy water, Seltzer does boat a few impressive benefits.

It helps to ease Indigestion

Along with hydrating more successfully than a sugar soda, Seltzer can also calm an upset stomach. The carbonation (and sugar free element) assist in settling nausea and indigestion. A study published in the “European Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology” showed that drinking one glass of carbonated water after a meal helped participants avoid or ease symptoms of an upset stomach.

Alleviate Contipation and Lower High Blood Pressure

Seltzer has also been shown to alleviate constipation and lower blood pressure thanks to its magnesium content. A study done in 2002 showed that fluids such as carbonated water assisted the absorption of fiber in the body. Be advised though, if you are looking for magnesium in your bubbles, not all fizzy waters are created equal; be sure to check the label. Alternatively, if you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), sparkling water can actually make your symptoms worse. If you’re on a low-sodium diet, check the sodium content on the bottle before indulging. And of course, it should not take the place of regular water [2].

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It can help you lose weight

Perhaps one of the best health benefits of Seltzer Water, weight loss can be a result of intake. Substituting sugary drinks such as sodas with Seltzer can reduce calorie intake. More so, the bubbles help you feel fuller faster, possibly aiding in eating less [3].

it helps with hangover

When it comes to drinking, most all of us know that the more sugary the alcoholic beverage, the worse we will feel the next morning. Instead of choosing a sugary soda as a mixer, opt for Seltzer. A group of researchers in Guangzhou found that hangovers aren’t caused by the ethanol itself, but rather its metabolite, acetaldehyde. So stick with Seltzer! Not only will it potentially prevent a hangover, it also lessens the calorie intake! Double win [4]!

Avoid the feeling of cheating yourself out of something you want

I don’t know about you, but if I’m on a diet, the only thing I want is the sugary food I can’t have! Trying to avoid soda or substitute it for still water can feel the same way. Opting for Seltzer can feel like an indulgence since you get that satisfying fizz, but you don’t have to feel guilty about it! Laureen Smith, PhD, RN and associate professor at the Ohio State University College of Nursing found that kids had a better chance of dropping those sugary sodas if they opted for Seltzer. It provided the carbonation they craved without the sugar they didn’t need [5].

Helps you stay hydrated while getting the fizzy feeling

I love water. But I understand that some people have to force themselves to drink it. Thankfully, Seltzer can hydrate your body as well as regular water does! Drinking about 64 ounces of fizzy water can meet your hydration needs, but it’s still important to enjoy anything in moderation. Sara Bleich, PhD and assocaite professor in health policy and management at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health says “Seltzer water is like drinking regular water. It’s harmless.”

Can it be bad for you?

In the very beginning of this article, I mentioned Seltzer Water could be stripping away your tooth enamel. This is no small thing! But with all the positive aspects of bubbly water, should one cautionary warning prevent us from reaching for our favorite fizzy brand? Maybe not.

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Soda is full of sugar and acid, leading to an acidic playground in your mouth once it mixes with all that oral bacteria. Though tooth enamel is strong, it’s also porous. Therefore, when the bacteria in your mouth grabs all the sugar from the soda you’re drinking, it stores some acid that ultimately erodes your enamel. And unfortunately, once it’s gone, it’s gone. But if the Seltzer water you’re craving doesn’t have sugar, it may be a fine alternative and completely safe for your teeth [6]. The explanation is simple: sparkling water is just water that’s undergone a carbonation process. Unless it’s got added sugar, sodium, etc., it’s just water! Therefore, it’s not going to hurt your teeth at all [7].

Some Fun Recipes For You To Enjoy:

Sure, you can tell your bartender you want a vodka, soda and lime, but there are other delicious ways to enjoy Seltzer.

Hibiscus Iced Tea Sparkler

Ingredients:

  • 4 C boiling water
  • 8 hibiscus tea bags
  • 1/2 C honey
  • Ice
  • 2 C sparkling water or seltzer
  • 1/4 C mint leaves, for garnish
  • Strawberries, for garnish

Instructions:

  1. In a large pitcher, combine tea bags, honey, and boiling water; let steep 30 minutes to 1 hour depending on how strong you like your tea.
  2. Remove tea bags.
  3. Add ice to pitcher and stir in sparkling water.
  4. Add mint.
  5. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.
  6. Garnish with strawberries.
  7. Serve.

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    Seltzer Summary

    Seltzer water can be enjoyed by children and adults alike, and is proven to be not only nutritionally beneficial, but also completely safe for your teeth, as long as there are no unsafe additives. Seltzer is super versatile and can be enjoyed on its own or with alcohol and more. Though anything and everything should be enjoyed in moderation, using Seltzer to get your daily recommended intake of water seems to be completely fine unless you suffer form IBS, in which case you may want to avoid it.

    So raise a glass and enjoy, knowing you are only helping yourself!

    Featured photo credit: Aidan Meyer via stocksnap.io

    Reference

    [1] http://www.calorieking.com/foods/calories-in-water-bottled-mineral-water_f-ZmlkPTgzMjcw.html
    [2] http://www.livestrong.com/article/165682-what-are-the-benefits-of-carbonated-water/
    [3] http://www.india.com/health/5-important-benefits-of-seltzer-water-you-need-to-know-1049488/
    [4] https://www.yahoo.com/news/blogs/sideshow/seeking-a-cure-for-the-hangover–scienists-say—sprite–181644088.html
    [5] http://time.com/3689687/seltzer-water-carbonated-water/
    [6] https://www.ashevillefamilydentist.com/the-top-6-worst-drinks-for-your-teeth/
    [7] http://blog.justanswer.com/true-or-false-sparkling-water-strips-your-teeth-enamel

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    Heather Poole

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    Last Updated on August 20, 2019

    How to Control Your Thoughts and Be the Master of Your Mind

    How to Control Your Thoughts and Be the Master of Your Mind

    Your mind is the most powerful tool you have for the creation of good in your life, but if not used correctly, can also be the most destructive force in your life.

    Your mind, more specifically, your thoughts, affect your perception and therefore, your interpretation of reality. (And here’s Why Your Perception Is Your Reality.)

    I have heard that the average person thinks around 70,000 thoughts a day. That’s a lot, especially if they are unproductive, self-abusive and just a general waste of energy.

    You can let your thoughts run amok, but why would you? It is your mind, your thoughts; isn’t it time to take your power back? Isn’t it time to take control?

    Choose to be the person who is actively, consciously thinking your thoughts. Become the master of your mind.

    When you change your thoughts, you will change your feelings as well, and you will also eliminate the triggers that set off those feelings. Both of these outcomes provide you with a greater level of peace in your mind.

    I currently have few thoughts that are not of my own choosing or a response from my reprogramming. I am the master of my mind, so now my mind is quite peaceful. Yours can be too!

    Who Is Thinking My Thoughts?

    Before you can become the master of your mind, you must recognize that you are currently at the mercy of several unwanted “squatters” living in your mind, and they are in charge of your thoughts. If you want to be the boss of them, you must know who they are and what their motivation is, and then you can take charge and evict them.

    Here are four of the “squatters” in your head that create the most unhealthy and unproductive thoughts:

    1. The Inner Critic

    This is your constant abuser who is often a conglomeration of:

    • Other people’s words; many times your parents.
    • Thoughts you have created based on your own or other peoples expectations.
    • Comparing yourself to other people, including those in the media.
    • The things you told yourself as a result of painful experiences such as betrayal and rejection. Your interpretation creates your self-doubt and self-blame, which are most likely undeserved in cases of rejection and betrayal.

    The Inner Critic is motivated by pain, low self-esteem, lack of self-acceptance and lack of self-love.

    Why else would this person abuse you? And since this person is actually you– why else would you abuse yourself? Why would you let anyone treat you this badly?

    2. The Worrier

    This person lives in the future; in the world of “what ifs.”

    The Worrier is motivated by fear which is often irrational and with no basis for it. Occasionally, this person is motivated by fear that what happened in the past will happen again.

    3. The Reactor or Trouble-Maker

    This is the one that triggers anger, frustration and pain. These triggers stem from unhealed wounds of the past. Any experience that is even closely related to a past wound will set him off.

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    This person can be set off by words or feelings, and can even be set off by sounds and smells.

    The Reactor has no real motivation and has poor impulse control and is run by past programming that no longer serves you, if it ever did.

    4. The Sleep Depriver

    This can be a combination of any number of different squatters including the inner planner, the rehasher, and the ruminator, along with the inner critic and the worrier.

    The Sleep Depriver’s motivation can be:

    • As a reaction to silence, which he fights against
    • Taking care of the business you neglected during the day
    • Self-doubt, low self-esteem, insecurity and generalized anxiety
    • As listed above for the inner critic and worrier

    How can you control these squatters?

    How to Master Your Mind

    You are the thinker and the observer of your thoughts. You must pay attention to your thoughts so you can identify “who” is running the show; this will determine which technique you will want to use.

    Begin each day with the intention of paying attention to your thoughts and catching yourself when you are thinking undesirable thoughts.

    There are two ways to control your thoughts:

    • Technique A – Interrupt and replace them
    • Technique B – Eliminate them altogether

    This second option is what is known as peace of mind!

    The technique of interrupting and replacing is a means of reprogramming your subconscious mind. Eventually, the replacement thoughts will become the “go to” thoughts in the applicable situations.

    Use Technique A with the Inner Critic and Worrier; and Technique B with the Reactor and Sleep Depriver.

    For the Inner Critic

    When you catch yourself thinking something negative about yourself (calling yourself names, disrespecting yourself, or berating yourself), interrupt it.

    You can yell (in your mind), “Stop! No!” or, “Enough! I’m in control now.” Then, whatever your negative thought was about yourself, replace it with an opposite or counter thought or an affirmation that begins with “I am.”

    For example, if your thought is, “I’m such a loser,” you can replace it with, “I am a Divine Creation of the Universal Spirit. I am a perfect spiritual being learning to master the human experience. I am a being of energy, light, and matter. I am magnificent, brilliant, and beautiful. I love and approve of myself just as I am.”

    You can also have a dialogue with yourself with the intention of discrediting the ‘voice’ that created the thought, if you know whose voice it is:

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    “Just because so-and-so said I was a loser doesn’t make it true. It was his or her opinion, not a statement of fact. Or maybe they were joking and I took it seriously because I’m insecure.”

    If you recognize that you have recurring self-critical thoughts, you can write out or pre-plan your counter thoughts or affirmation so you can be ready. This is the first squatter you should evict, forcefully, if necessary:

    • They rile up the Worrier.
    • The names you call yourself become triggers when called those names by others, so he also maintains the presence of the Reactor.
    • They are often present when you try to fall asleep so he perpetuates the Sleep Depriver.
    • They are a bully and is verbally and emotionally abusive.
    • They are the destroyer of self-esteem. They convince you that you’re not worthy. They’re a liar! In the interest of your self-worth, get them out!

    Eliminate your worst critic and you will also diminish the presence of the other three squatters.

    Replace them with your new best friends who support, encourage, and enhance your life. This is a presence you want in your mind.

    For the Worrier

    Prolonged anxiety is mentally, emotionally and physically unhealthy. It can have long-term health implications.

    Fear initiates the fight or flight response, creates worry in the mind and creates anxiety in the body.

    You should be able to recognize a “worry thought” immediately by how you feel. The physiological signs that the fight or flight response of fear has kicked in are:

    • Increased heart rate, blood pressure, or surge of adrenaline
    • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
    • Muscles tense

    Use the above stated method to interrupt any thought of worry and then replace it. But this time you will replace your thoughts of worry with thoughts of gratitude for the outcome you wish for.

    If you believe in a higher power, this is the time to engage with it. Here is an example:

    Instead of worrying about my loved ones traveling in bad weather, I say the following (I call it a prayer):

    “Thank you great spirit for watching over _______. Thank you for watching over his/her car and keeping it safe, road-worthy, and free of maintenance issues without warning. Thank you for surrounding him/her with only safe, conscientious, and alert drivers. And thank you for keeping him/her safe, conscientious, and alert.”

    Smile when you think about it or say it aloud, and phrase it in the present tense; both of these will help you feel it and possibly even start to believe it.

    If you can visualize what you are praying for, the visualization will enhance the feeling so you will increase the impact in your vibrational field.

    Now take a calming breath, slowly in through your nose, and slowly out through the mouth. Take as many as you like!

    Replacing fearful thoughts with gratitude will decrease reactionary behavior, taking the steam out of the Reactor.

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    For example:

    If your child gets lost in the mall, the typical parental reaction that follows the fearful thoughts when finding them is to yell at them.

    “I told you never to leave my sight.” This reaction just adds to the child’s fear level from being lost in the first place. Plus, it also teaches them that mom and/or dad will get mad when he or she makes a mistake, which may make them lie to you or not tell you things in the future.

    Change those fearful thoughts when they happen:

    “Thank You (your choice of Higher Power) for watching over my child and keeping him safe. Thank you for helping me find him soon.”

    Then, when you see your child after this thought process, your only reaction will be gratitude, and that seems like a better alternative for all people involved.

    For the Trouble-Maker, Reactor or Over-Reactor

    Permanently eliminating this squatter will take a bit more attention and reflection after the fact to identify and heal the causes of the triggers; but until then, you can prevent the Reactor from getting out of control by initiating conscious breathing as soon as you recognize his presence.

    The Reactor’s thoughts or feelings activate the fight or flight response just like with the Worrier. The physiological signs of his presence will be the same. With a little attention, you should be able to tell the difference between anxiety, anger, frustration, or pain:

    • Increased heart rate and blood pressure; surge of adrenaline
    • Shallow breathing or breathlessness
    • Muscles tension

    I’m sure you’ve heard the suggestion to count to ten when you get angry—well, you can make those ten seconds much more productive if you are breathing consciously during that time.

    Conscious breathing is as simple as it sounds; just be conscious of your breathing. Pay attention to the air going in and coming out.

    Breathe in through your nose:

    • Feel the air entering your nostrils.
    • Feel your lungs filling and expanding.
    • Focus on your belly rising.

    Breathe out through your nose:

    • Feel your lungs emptying.
    • Focus on your belly falling.
    • Feel the air exiting your nostrils.

    Do this for as long as you like. Leave the situation if you want. This gives the adrenaline time to normalize.

    Now you can address the situation with a calmer, more rational perspective and avoid damaging behavior.

    One of the troubles this squatter causes is that it adds to the sleep depriver’s issues. By evicting, or at least controlling the Reactor, you will decrease reactionary behavior, which will decrease the need for the rehashing and ruminating that may keep you from falling asleep.

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    Master your mind and stop the Reactor from bringing stress to you and your relationships!

    For the Sleep Depriver

    (They’re made up of the Inner Planner, the Rehasher and the Ruminator, along with the Inner Critic and the Worrier.)

    I was plagued with a very common problem: not being able to turn off my mind at bedtime. This inability prevented me from falling asleep and thus, getting a restful and restorative night’s sleep.

    Here’s how I mastered my mind and evicted the Sleep Depriver and all his cronies.

    1. I started by focusing on my breathing—paying attention to the rise and fall of my belly—but that didn’t keep the thoughts out for long. (Actually, I now start with checking my at-rest mouth position to keep me from clenching.)
    2. Then I came up with replacement strategy that eliminated uncontrolled thinking—imagining the word in while breathing in and thinking the word out when breathing out. I would (and do) elongate the word to match the length of my breath.

    When I catch myself thinking, I shift back to in, out. With this technique, I am still thinking, sort of, but the wheels are no longer spinning out of control. I am in control of my mind and I choose quiet.

    From the first time I tried this method I started to yawn after only a few cycles and am usually asleep within ten minutes.

    For really difficult nights, I add an increase of attention by holding my eyes in a looking-up position (Closed, of course!). Sometimes I try to look toward my third eye but that really hurts my eyes.

    If you have trouble falling asleep because you can’t shut off your mind, I strongly recommend you try this technique. I still use it every night. You can start sleeping better tonight!

    You can also use this technique any time you want to:

    • Fall back to sleep if you wake up too soon.
    • Shut down your thinking.
    • Calm your feelings.
    • Simply focus on the present moment. 

    The Bottom Line

    Your mind is a tool, and like any other tool, it can be used for constructive purposes or for destructive purposes.

    You can allow your mind to be occupied by unwanted, undesirable and destructive tenants, or you can choose desirable tenants like peace, gratitude, compassion, love, and joy.

    Your mind can become your best friend, your biggest supporter, and someone you can count on to be there and encourage you. The choice is yours!

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    Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

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