Confessions of a Dr. Pepper Addict

Dublin Dr. Pepper six packHow many of you own an honest to goodness flag emblazoned with the logo of your favorite soft drink? (O.K. several of you.) But do you also have photographic evidence of a college dorm room wall decorated with sticky 12 ounce cans?

Satan’s syrup, white mambo,┬ácarob powder. However you pronounce it, there is an addictive chemical used in every can of Dr. Pepper which makes you crave it much more often than fortnightly. While this disastrous addiction is spreading like gangrene across the United States resulting in increased blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, irritable bowel and the sugar shakes, one tiny section of Texas still sucks down their juice pure–the forty square miles between Stephenville and Hico.

The original bottler of Dr. Pepper in Dublin, Texas still shoots their bottles up with pure Imperial Cane Sugar. The street value of this rare, high quality DP can run anywhere from .50 cents to $2.00 for an eight ounce bottle. (Although it can cost you your life if caught with a six-pack in a dark alley on the Texas State University Campus in San Marcos.)

While the dirty, white truth is that any form of Dr. Pepper can cost you your life, Dublin DP was how I learned to dance with the devil. And it’s time we wake up America. Rumors have run rampant for decades as to what Dr. Pepper’s secret ingredient really is. Some say prune juice. Some say motor oil. In reality its straight, hard, death. And at nearly 30% obesity, the state of Texas is clearly losing the battle.

Take it from a Texan who’s been clean for 15 years. There can be life after Dublin DP, but its no Dr. Pepper Pound Cake walk. It’ll get ugly, real ugly. If you can’t make the break cold turkey, try swapping out DP for Shiner Bock. Or try smoking instead. (Whatever you do, don’t switch over to Diet DP! It’s a trick, and the diet can be even more destructive than the original.)

When you find yourself on hands and knees licking up a sticky spot of Vicks VapoRub on the Piggly Wiggly floor, you’ll know it’s time to find help. Only you can save your life–twelve ounces at a time.

Click here or here for help breaking your DP habit.

34 thoughts on “Confessions of a Dr. Pepper Addict”

  1. I am at one 20 ouncer a day, and Dublin Dr. Pepper is not available up here in the Wiscsonsin territory, but I still feel addicted to Dr. Pepper. You know what’s even better and more addicting, but a little harder to find? Doc 360, the Pepsi “alternative”.

    I just saw something on Nightline last night about how food affects the reward center in the brain similarly to drugs. I do believe it, especially when I crave a Dr. P. I have no other addictions. I am a healthy person overall — granola myself, but with a strange hypocritic addiction to Dr. Pepper. Every day I say that I should stop drinking it. But it gets me through my work day and I look forward to rewarding myself at 11 am. Dang.

    • Hang in there, Sarah! There is hope! I’ve made the conversion to tea. I’ve even managed to reduce the sugar level to something manageable. But then again, I’ve also started drinking red wine. I feel like it is healthier for me than Dr. Pepper, but I suppose with its own set of risks!

  2. I frequently joke that I need a 12 Step program to quit Dr Pepper. I’ve been clean and sober for three days now. You’re right. Soda is death, or at least Type 2 Diabetes, in a can. Great article!

  3. I have a horrible addiction to dr. Pepper. I drink 8-10 cans a day and have for about 6 years. If I don’t have it, I get shaky and have terrible migraines. I’ve tried substituting it for tea or anything else but I still have the same symptoms. I cannot drink any other soda only Dr. Pepper. I have been told I will have kidney failure in the future if I don’t stop but I have no idea how.

    • Hello my name I mike , I am sitting here looking at 30 empty 20 pack boxes (0ne per day
      I woke up on November the first at 3:00 am dying , had my wife take me to er .
      My sides felt as if they had been hit by a truck , not on movement escaped notice to the ribs , the Dr Pepper had messed up my throat and spinkter the spinkter was staying dilated to the size of an apple . The fluids ( accidreflux) would drain directly to the lungs both of them , now I am healing slowly and as it will take time to correct this problem ( if the insurance allows the doctors to just do their jobs my life can be mine .
      I have completely quit all caffeine , nicotine ect in two weeks , you may say I dying to do so .
      I ended up with bi-lateral phemonia in both lungs and it almost killed me , I will deal with the other issues of this drinks for a while to come . It’s painfull and I must say every pain reminds me of one thing , I only need God as my everything not a tingle of Dr Pepper .

  4. Ok. I’ve been drinking D. P. for years and I’m up to about a 12-pack a day. Yeah, you read it right 12-pack. Sounds crazy but I can drink a can of it faster than anyone can drink a can of beer. Just trust me on that one. I don’t want to prove myself correct on that fact to anyone. Maybe I drink so many D. P. because I suffer Cluster Headaches. I don’t know. It’s becoming almost impossible to keep up with what my body wants to drink of them and I do go through a little bit of DT’s without a few a day at the least. Anyway, I just had to share this before I go through the challenge of trying to quit. No, I’m not fat or obese. I’m actually 5’8″ and about 150lbs at 44 years of age and in pretty good shape for a man my age. I don’t like tea or cool-aid and never have. Water, milk or soft drinks is all I can remember drinking. A V-8 every now and then and maybe a sports drink but rarely. As I said, I just had to share this fact before I try to quit just in case it kills me.

    • Wow, a 12-pack! James, that for sure is the most I’ve heard. Good luck with kicking the habit, and if you survive I would love to hear about it! I still jones for one every now and then, but I feel better now that I’ve been off for some years.

    • James I’m right there with you.. 8-12 a day here also. I found myself some days not even wanting to eat as long as I’ve got Dr Pepper. And I’ve been this way since I was around 18 and I’m now 47. My blood pressure has been high for years, medications don’t even help.. They make throw up every morning.. I finally just stopped the meds.. Last time I went in for a check up my blood pressure was so high that they made me go take an EKG instantly. But that came back fine, my cholesterol levels and bloodwork all good too… I keep saying I’m going to quit also, but the only time I ever did was when I was stuck in the hospital due to a car wreck busting my legs up. After a month I finally had a nurse start bringing me some. I often think that if I quit Dr Pepper, that will kill me.

  5. Alright. I’ve been drinking Dr.pepper for almost more than have my life.( I am 13) I have a picture of me as a baby, reaching for my sisters can of Dr.pepper in my mothers arms. I drink 6 12 fl oz cans a day at home and Restaurants I get up to 4 refiles or more depending on how much syrup is added in. I live in Texas and everybody at my school knows I love Dr.pepper. When I don’t have Dr.pepper for more than a couple hours I get horrible headaches. I often get Dublin Dr.pepper at the market and sometimes the 16 fl oz at the gas station. I’ve tried to stop but I can’t seem to. My teeth have been Scarred by it and my right side bottom teeth have lost almost all of they’re enamel. I have never liked any other drink not even water. I am not obese. I ride a bike every day. When my sister quit she lost about 30 lbs. I hope to stop.

    • David, I know your pain. The headaches are due to the caffeine addiction. If you can find a way to cut back gradually on the caffeine (or replace it with something less deadly, then you should be able to minimize the headache portion of your attempts to go clean from DP! Best of luck. I know your teeth and overall health will thank you when you succeed!

  6. I am drinking about 6 litres a day… It’s really scary because it’s all I’m having lately, I’m drinking so much that I don’t even eat food much. Maybe a packet of crisps some days or a sandwich or something but not much else… I pretty much refuse to drink much else, I’m dehydrated in school as they don’t allow fizzy drinks and all… Constant tummy aches and all… It’s addicting man…

  7. This is a real thing isn’t it.

    It all started with those cool and convenient 16oz cans. A little more than 12, not quite 20, and it wasn’t wrapped in plastic. I’d buy two or three a week, they were only a dollar each. After a few weeks, this darkness came over me. I may have been watching a movie or killing some time playing an amusing flash game online-I’m not sure. I had two of these tall-boy cans chilling in my fridge, and I drank one of them as usual..but when the can was empty, I found my soul was too.

    There it was, this empty pit inside of me, swallowing up all the light and joy that was my life. The only thing that could even temporarily satisfy this void with was another 16oz can of Dr. Pepper.

    Since then I’ve moved to the high desert of southern Utah, where the land is parched and barren. I tried to live with my addiction, though I hid it from close friends and family. The shame became too heavy to continue heaving around, the unquenchable black void inside kept asking for more, more.. Oh god..

    I’m only leaving this note in hopes that my story will help someone else. If you’re reading this, I beg you, never let a single drop of this terrible soda inside of your temple.

    Tonight I’m packing my bags and hiking out into the desert. Without a compass it will be weeks before I find another town or convenience store. It’ll be weeks before I have another opportunity to have a Dr. Pepper.

  8. I drink about 2 liters of DP a day and I am a full blown addict. I never enjoyed any other soda as much as my Dr Pepper. I am 33 yrs old and normal weight but I just found out my insulin levels are through the roof and I am pre diabetic. This stuff is killing me! I know better I am a nurse! But I am an addict and coming here to confess and read other people’s stories has given me some relief! For the past 2 weeks I have been trying to quit the DP. I reduced my intake drastically for the first week or so, but I slipped up these past few days. I feel like shit for getting the large today instead of the small I really do. That is why I’m here. I’m done! (:

    • Heather, I feel your pain. After developing an allergic reaction to DP, I had to stop. I still suffer the same rash whenever I drink dark colas and a few other food items as well. Best of luck with breaking the habit. You can do it!

  9. I’m 38 years old and have drank Dr pepper for 32 years I don’t drank nothin else I don’t drank milk water nothin else but Dr pepper I do have a REAL addiction to Dr pepper I would love to stop cause it has put me in the hospital a couple of times I’m not over weight I weigh 125 and I’m 5’2 I would really really like to stop drinkin it I drink up to 6 2 liters a day if there is real help I would love to find it

    • Heather, I can’t provide any professional help. I would suggest trying to find a wholistic health clinic, or a doctor that is willing to think outside the traditional box some. I had to start by actually drinking water. That alone helped me tons. I still drink tea quite a bit, but I’ve gradually reduced the amount of sugar in it. I drink over 40 ounces a water a day. It helps flush everything else out. I try to eat nothing but fruit and vegetable smoothies for lunch. Anyway, good luck. I’m 41 years old, and it was my late 30’s that I realized I had to make some serious changes or flush my health for good.

  10. Hi. I’ve been drinking Dr. Pepper since I was about 7 yrs old. I would sneak a drink of my uncle’s Dr. Pepper in the bottle then I started asking my mom to get them for me at the store. I really didn’t become “addicted” until about age 17 when I started my first job and could buy a 12 pack myself. Gradually I have built up to a 12 pack a day, now, I just turned 45 two days ago and I want to quit (or slack off at least!) on my Dr. Pepper intake. I’m about 128 lbs and 5’3″ and I will have to sub a few cans a day with a bottle of water or sweet tea or I’ll have bad headaches. My teeth are getting bad. I used to be a dental assistant so I know what these drinks do to your teeth! But I drink them anyway so I won’t have the headaches and the shakes. I want to also quit smoking (a pack a day) but I can’t do both or I’ll commit assault and/or battery on some idiot that makes me mad ha! Kidding! I’ll prob just cry. A lot. But I get sick (upset stomach) every morning now (not sure if its IBS or I’m developing some kind of reaction to drinking only Dr Peppers all day) and I’ve had pneumonia like symptoms for a month and tried 3 diff. antibiotics and none are helping. Gonna have to go back to doc. I’m looking for the best way to eventually quit Dr peppers and get healthier again. Any help is appreciated. Thanks! Staci

    • I feel your pain, staci. I was forced to quit DP in college when I started to have extreme reactions to the stuff. I started getting irregular and accelerated heartbeat and a rash that would eventually start to swell up my throat. I’ve used sweet tea to help make the long term lifestyle change. Then I started cutting back on the amount of sugar in the tea. I use about a quarter of what I used to and now am feeling pretty good. Of course, I’m not a doctor and can’t give medical advice, But more water was the other key for me. I drink around 60 ounces of water a day now. And the last thing you might try is more vitamins. I drink “energy food” (green vegetable stuff mixed with juice) and I also started adding chlorophyll to my water. It is really high in iron and other vitamins. I think I was getting nearly enough iron. My kidneys were working way to hard to filter toxins from my blood and still not doing a very good job. The iron helped me with this. Sometimes a “Wholistic” clinic is the best way to go on this sort of stuff since traditional medicine can’t always offer much. Good luck!

  11. I finally came to the conclusion after researching the internet that there is a
    addiction to Dr. Pepper. I thought I was just abusing it like a person that
    eats too much.
    I can drink sweet tea and don’t have an over whelming desire to drink more
    and more. It is beyond more than being thirsty…… you can drink DP till
    you are bloated and there is an emotional pull to have another one and
    if it isn’t readily available you are thinking about Dr. Pepper from morning
    till night. First thing in the morning , I want Dr. Pepper.
    I don’t believe it is the sugar content, something else has to triggering
    the addiction.
    I have never been addicted to anything until DP came along . The addiction
    started about a 2 years ago.

  12. Sadly I have never had Dr.Pepper, but I have had DR PEPPER. There is no period after DR

    And yes Dublin DP is good. Funny I am from Dublin, Ireland and went to Texas years ago and we stopped at the Dublin, TX pant. Great find!

  13. I inherited this addiction from my gf from Waco,,Texas. This and frito pie. I get the $1.00 cup from Mickey Ds. I get a large with extra ice so in some way it’s not as bad. But at least it’s not a heroin addiction

  14. I drink a minimum of two 2-liters everyday and sometimes three 2-liters. I know its bad for me but to be honest I cannot stop. I tried a couple years ago and had headaches from not having the sugar in my system. Like a nut I went back to it and it got worse. I am overweight and unhealthy. Pray for me to have the willingness to do something about pit because truth is right now I just don’t have the desire. 54 yrs old and I know better. but apparently try thats not enough

  15. I used to drink Coca Cola. Don’t remember when I got on DP.

    I’m definitely addicted. With my family history I’m screwed.

    Probably the only way to get off is either a self induced coma or a lengthy stay in a Turkish prison.

  16. I have been drinking a 44oz Dr Pepper every day for the past 6 years. I don’t mean to give a lot of information but without it I get horribly constipated and get horrible and painful and large hemorrhoids. I recently tried to quit and went 3 days without drinking it and ended up in pain with an enormous hemorrhoid that lasted for 3 weeks. I don’t know what else to do. I don’t get the headaches when I don’t drink it and regular stool softeners don’t help and increasing fiber just makes the constipation worse. I am getting tired of the way drinking it makes me feel but I don’t know what else to do.

    • sorry to here that! I’m no doctor, so I can’t give any medical advice. I know that personally, I had to start drinking much more water. At first I had to drink tons more water (like half a gallon a day). Now I make sure I drink at lease 64 to 80 ounces. And I make sure to take 2-3 magnesium capsules. I think the headaches are from cutting out all the sugar and caffeine cold turkey. You could try drinking some black tea or a 5-hour energy or something just to try to cut back more gradually on the caffeine. Sugar can be a killer to quit! Hang in there, and I hope you figure out a healthy pattern!


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