Let’s start the new year off right by making smarter choices in our beverages. Whether you’re looking for a ‘feel good’, a pick me up or making wiser choices, here’s what you need to know. The Center for Science in the Public Interest has stated that most beverages, including the ones we think are healthy, make up almost half of all added sugar in the average American’s diet. So, before you start sipping away…take a look at this.
1. Fruit juice
Most people are lulled into believing that fruit juice is a healthy beverage. It’s made from fruit, after all. Although fruit is a healthy snack (when eaten in moderation), when you extract the juice, all the fiber is removed. This leaves behind a ton of sugar that gets dumped into your blood stream like a broken water pipe.
One cup of unsweetened orange juice or apple juice contains 22 grams of sugar. By comparison, 8 ounces of your favorite Cola contains 24 grams of sugar.
This doesn’t mean it’s OK to drink soft drinks. It does mean you should ditch both the soft drinks and bottled juices.
2. Juice Smoothies (in a bottle)
When you’re short on time but, still want to make a healthy selection, a bottled smoothie may seem like a smart choice. In actuality, these smoothies are often loaded with sugar.
A 15.2 oz bottle of Naked Berry Blast has 29 grams of sugar. That’s like eating 8 Chips-A-Hoy chocolate chip cookies.
3. Infused / Flavored Waters
Vitaminwater: This is a great name isn’t it? Makes me want to go out, buy a bottle and start getting healthy.
Here’s the shocking reality. A 20 oz. bottle of Vitaminwater contains 32 grams of sugar. That’s the equivalent of eating 6 ½ Oreo cookies. (By the way, The ‘Coca-Cola’ company makes Vitaminwater.)
A 20 oz bottle of Snapple Agave Melon Antioxidant water has 33 grams of sugar in it. This is the equivalent of eating 1 ½ slices of apple pie.
Need some flavor without all the sugar in your water? Take a pitcher of water and throw a handful of berries in it and let it sit overnight in your fridge.
4. Sweet Tea / Bottled Tea
The health benefits of tea is becoming well known. Tea is loaded with powerful antioxidants that assist in fighting diseases like cancer. But, did you know that ‘Sweet Tea’ (pre-sweetened iced teas) contain a ‘boat load’ of sugar?
A 23-ounce can of Arizona Green Tea with Ginseng & Honey contains 51 grams of sugar, while a 20-ounce bottle of Lipton Lemon Iced Tea contains 32 grams of sugar.
A 20 oz bottle of SoBe Green Tea has 61 grams of sugar in it. That’s the equivalent of 2 slices of plain cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory.
5. Energy Drinks
None of the energy produced by these drinks can justify the horrific sugar load.
Red Bull (16 oz) has 52 grams of sugar, while…
Monster Energy (16 oz) contains 54 grams of sugar and,… (equivalent of eating 8 oz – ½ pint - of Baskin Robbins Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream)
Rockstar Energy Drink (16 oz) has a whopping 62 grams of sugar. (equivalent of 3 Krispy Kreme Glazed Chocolate Cake Doughnuts)
6. Sports Drinks (Electrolyte drinks)
A 16 oz Gatorade Thirst Quencher Blue or Powerade Mountain Berry Blast contain 28 grams of sugar. This is the equivalent of eating 5 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
7. Hot/Cold Latte’s and Frapuccinos
A Grande (16oz serving) White Chocolate Mocha has 430 calories – if you use 2% milk. The white chocolate flavored syrups, whipped cream and dark chocolate make up 53 grams of sugar. That’s a total of 13 teaspoons of sugar in 1 drink and the equivalent of eating 3 Brownies.
Starbuck’s Iced Flavored Latte (grande) contains 28 grams of sugar, while…
Dunkin Donuts Iced Caramel Latte (16 oz) has 37 grams of sugar. That’s the equivalent of eating 3 of D&D’s glazed donuts.
8. Chocolate Milk
Think this is the best way to encourage your kids to drink more milk? Think again. Horizon chocolate milk contains 22 grams of sugar in a single 8 oz serving. This is the same amount of sugar as eating ¾ of a regular bag of M&M’s (plain).
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