• Beware the Sugary Beverage

    Beverage companies are spending billions of dollars on marketing every year to get your to drink your calories. There are hundreds of ads for sodas, energy drinks, sports drinks, and juices each year. So it should come as no surprise to hear that on any given day, half of the United States is consuming a sugary drink.

    Think about your typical day. Perhaps you wake up and have a large glass of orange juice with your breakfast. Then, on your way to work, you stop and get yourself a large latte to help get you through the early morning slump. Lunchtime comes around and you get a large fountain soda to accompany your turkey sandwich. Mid-afternoon shows up and to fight off any unwanted yawning, you drink an energy drink. After work, you head to the gym and hydrate with a sports drink. For dinner, maybe you have another soda or perhaps a glass of wine. This scenario isn’t completely out of the questions for most Americans, wouldn’t you agree?

    This typical scenario described just added about 960 calories to your day in liquid form. That’s almost 5000 calories in your typical 5-day work week - all from sugary beverages. It’s no wonder that Harvard’s School of Public Health has numerous articles on how sugary beverages are a direct link and major contributor to the rising obesity epidemic.

    Enforcing slight alterations to your daily “liquid routine” can be one of the best gifts you give your body and your health, not to mention your waistline. Following these simple tips can save yourself from gaining several pounds a year:

    • Orange juice isn’t “bad” for you, but it does have high sugar content. Substituting a few glasses a week with a sugar-free drink  or flavored water can reduce the sugar you’re consuming significantly.

    • Switch your sodas to diet and eliminate hundreds of calories throughout the day. Coke Zero not only has zero calories, but it’s also been made to imitate the “real taste” of a regular Coke.

    • Exchange your Venti Latte’s (with whole milk) to drip coffee with half and half and low-calorie sweeteners.

    • Swapping a regular energy drink for its sugar-free cousin can save you at least 100 calories per regular serving.

    • Sports drinks have honed in on producing more drinks that have less sugar but the same amount of electrolytes that you’re looking for when putting in a hard workout. Reach for the low-calorie versions.

    • Make sure you drink at least 8 cups of water a day. This can help to quench your thirst throughout the day and keep you from automatically reaching for a sugary, high calorie drink. In fact, drinking soda water or sparkling water provides the same benefits as regular water but “tricks” you into thinking it’s a more appealing drink.

    The Bottom Line

    Choosing healthier drink options does not mean sacrificing your taste buds. You can make slight changes to the drinks you already enjoy that will in turn decrease your sugar and calorie intake significantly. Taking a few seconds throughout your day to weigh your options when choosing a beverage can truly go a long way.

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