The Shocking Amount of Calories Hidden in Everyday Beverages
Looking at the chart above, it’s easy to see how you can drink almost half of your recommended daily calorie allowance just through typical everyday beverages. In a study released by the National Center for Health Statistics, it was found that half of the U.S. population over the age of 2 consumes sugary drinks daily. Consuming too many sugary drinks has been linked to weight gain, obesity, and type 2 diabetes. The calories found in many of our favorite beverages are usually empty calories, calories that don’t provide our bodies with any nutrition.
So What Can You Do?
Of course it’s best to drink plenty of water, but water can be boring. It’s important to have a varied diet, even when it comes to the beverages you consume, as a varied and interesting diet is one that we are more likely to stick to.
A typical 8fl oz. glass of orange juice contains 110 calories and approximately 20 grams of sugar. Processed juice is usually packed full of sugar; you are better off making fresh juice at home using a mixture of fruits and vegetables, or eating a piece of fruit, this way you don’t miss out on any fiber.
It’s mid-morning and you need your caffeine-fix so you decide to head to your nearest coffee shop for a latte. A typical medium latte with flavored syrup is around 250 calories. Opt for non-fat milk, skip the syrup, and you’ll save yourself 120 calories and a lot of sugar.
A can or medium sized glass of cola will give you 140 empty calories that could be better spent on yummy and nutritious food. Try one of our healthy soda alternatives instead. They taste just as good, without the added sugar and empty calories.
It’s fine to have coffee in moderation, but try to alternate between coffee and antioxidant rich green tea. 58 calories for a cup of coffee is pretty good, but opt for milk instead of trans-fat laden coffee creamer, and add stevia instead of sugar if you find it too bitter without.
A typical glass of lemonade contains 110 calories and around 25 grams of sugar! When eating dinner, try to stick to water. Jazz it up by making infused water, or if you are in a rush, add a couple of slices of lemon and lime to the glass.
A large glass of white wine contains 180 calories. It’s fine to consume alcohol in moderation, but try to limit your intake to once or twice a week. If you enjoy wine in the evening, opt for red wine. You won’t save calories, but it’s packed full of polyphenols, which may help to protect the lining of your heart’s blood vessels.
Simple beverage swaps can save you a significant number of calories, if you follow the options above, you would save approximately 400 calories in just one day! That number adds up significantly over the course of a week, and incorporating more water into your diet can help you to reduce daily calories even further.