As an alternative to soda - have you ever tried an Izze? These sparkling juice drinks are a healthier choice than the chemicals added to many soft drinks. Even though they are high in sugar, the sugar comes from natural fruit juices rather than high fructose corn syrup or cane sugar, so it is not the most evil kind of sugar. Obviously the ideal would be to just drink water, but if you need a little splash of flavor - definitely try an Izze.
My favorite is the Sparkling Apple. It has a light and refreshing taste of apple, without being too sweet. How cute is the little green can???