My brother-in-law and his wife just announced that they have been soda free for over six weeks now. I think my brother-in-law may like Dr. Pepper more than he likes me. He was a fan is to put it lightly. I'm so impressed with him and his wife for giving it up. Giving up soda is as tough any other addictive substance. Sugar consumption begets more sugar consumption. It just does. So, what about diet? It seems like it should be a safe alternative because it is not made from sugar. Not quite so. Diet soda is addictive as well, and maybe even more so.
Just because you aren't consuming calories according to the nutrition label, doesn't mean you aren't having something. You are and it is nothing good. Soda leaves you without anything substantive to burn as fuel and you will be craving something more and usually something else that won't provide the nutrients and vitamins you need.
I know soda is a can of worms and it even gets trickier in LDS culture when you get into the whole caffeine discussion. Here's my two cents: soda, not just caffeine is addictive and something we should limit consumption of; but that doesn't mean you have to get rid of it entirely. See it as a special occasion thing. Growing up, we pretty much only had soda for "b" occasions: birthdays and barbecues. I think that was about right.
I don't think that drinking caffeinated sodas paves your path to hell; I think too much soda, no matter what kind, it just makes it harder to eat well and take care of my body.
Some links for more info and such:
Health.com Can You Get Hooked on Diet Soda? (The article that had me saying, "duh")
Experience Life Why I Do Not Dig Diet Soda (I really liked this one)
Summer Tomato Tips To Break a Soda Addiction
What about you?
What are your thoughts on soda and diet soda?