Don’t drink your calories

Many people are working out and eating healthy, yet aren’t losing weight. Why? While they are watching what they eat, they fail to take into account the calories in what they are drinking or they are drinking things that they think are healthy which really aren’t.

While some drinks are obviously bad for your waist like soda and other sugary drinks, others aren’t so easy to spot. Take for instance tea. Tea is generally good for you. That is until you bottle it with a bunch of sugar or corn syrup. Instead of bottled tea, brew your own then add a teaspoon sugar or honey and put it in a sipper in the fridge overnight.

Another diet buster is juice. That’s right, juice. While it may be packed with vitamins and natural, it definitely is not low calorie. For an 8 ounce serving, orange juice has an average of 115 calories, apple juice has 120 calories, and grape juice has over 150. This is because while whole fruit is mostly juice and fiber, it takes several pieces of fruit to make one serving of juice. Most bottled juices have more than 8 ounces in them so they are even higher in calories if you drink the entire bottle. Plus juice it is very low in fiber since most of the fiber is lost in the juicing process. Instead of juice, have the real thing. A piece of fruit is just as healthy but lower in calories and high in fiber. Another thing to be careful of, especially with kid’s drinks, is to be sure you’re getting 100% juice. Some “juice” drinks are just 10% juice and the rest is sugar water and chemicals. Read the label and stay away from these juice imposters.

“Health” waters include vitamin water or those purporting to give you extra benefits over plain water. Don’t be fooled. They are mostly sugar water with a little flavoring. Take a good multivitamin/mineral supplement with a glass of plain water instead.

Energy drinks traditionally have a lot of calories. While they may have caffeine in them, they also get their energy from sugar. Calorie content varies though so check labels or just have a strong cup of coffee instead. I also have concerns about constantly subjecting your body (especially kids and young adults) to all those chemicals. It’s easy to become addicted to them. Plus they are expensive.

Coffee, like tea, itself isn’t bad. It’s what you put in it that will get you in trouble. Coffee stand and bottled coffee drinks like mocha, lattes, espressos, and flavored creamers may taste good, but pack in the calories while draining your wallet. The money spent on such drinks really adds up over a year. If you figure $4/drink and you have one every working morning, that’s around a thousand dollars spent every year just on coffee!

Finally, don’t forget about alcohol. It has a lot of calories, ranging from 80 to 200 calories per serving. Compare this to sodas, which have around 100 calories per serving. Now you can see why your scale went up after a night of drinking, even before you consider anything extra you ate.

A good chart for comparing the average calories in what we drink is put out by the Beverage Institute for Health & Wellness. Drink This, Not That posted an online article listing the 20 worst drinks in America for 2010. I hope your favorite drink isn’t on the list.


One Response

  1. Awesome website. Thank you! I put your feed on my RSS reader!

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