When people looking to lean out ask me what changes they should make nutrition wise there is one thing that I will always tell them:
Consuming your calories in liquid form often doesn’t add anything nutrient wise and these calories are often overlooked when totalling up your count for the day. Now obviously there are exceptions to the liquid calorie rule such as protein shakes, tea/coffee and of course water.
Some people will eat extremely clean and healthy and throw it all away for a full sugar soda or a coffee with tons of cream and sugar. A small iced cappuccino from Tim Hortons boasts 250 calories and 33g of sugar! And that’s without the whipped cream or chocolate sauce. Heck even a small coffee with one cream and one sugar is 55 calories and 6g of sugar, if you’re having two or three of these in a day it really adds up.
Starbucks is another place where the calories really add up in your drinks. Their white hot chocolate is a whopping 410 calories for 16oz. Even their flavored lattes are 250 calories for 16oz. Here the smart thing to do is have it made with skim milk and a sugar free flavoring which will make the drink 130 calories and save you half the sugar (Most people don’t realize that fat free/skim milk has about 12g of sugar per cup, which is why I prefer almond milk).
The worst part is your body is not benefiting at all from these beverages. You need to stop and take a close look at the label the next time you think about buying that drink; energy drinks and fruit ‘juice’ are often laced with loads of added sugar, you’d be better off having a black coffee (or coffee with almond milk and sweetener) and an actual piece of fruit.
Liquor and mixed drinks are another source of sugar and carbs that need to be monitored when you have fitness goals. An average martini will run you about 150 calories while a Piña Colada is around 450.
The easiest thing to do when you’re trying to watch your weight is to not consume liquid calories at all, just stick to plain old water. Mother nature doesn’t screw things up. You can also drink unlimited amounts of green tea and have black/herbal tea and coffee. If you do add to your hot beverages keep that in mind when you’re thinking about where all of calories are coming from.
It may take a bit of getting used to but the calories you’ll save can really add up, especially if you’re consuming around 500 calories a day from what you drink. Skip the sugary soda, grab some water and you’ll look and feel better.