Happy National Coffee Day! Before ordering your beverage this morning, do a little research into how many pumps of what goes into your drink. You may not realize how much sugar and calories hide inside your favorite coffee drink. Brace yourself. It’s not always pretty. Start with your morning cup of coffee and consider the following three tips to help you achieve a better overall health and weight.
1. Choose Your Milk Wisely
Your coffee should still taste like coffee when the barista is done doctoring it up. While black coffee can be too strong or acidic for you, you can ask the barista to only add a splash of milk or one pump of sweetener instead of the usual four. The little something may be just the thing that transforms your drink into a cheaper, lower calorie version of the latte.
If you are going to order a dairy-free milk alternative, ask about the sugar and calorie count before agreeing. Many of the dairy-free milks contain shocking amounts of both. You can usually check out the coffee shop’s website for the milks’ nutrition facts if you do not want to confront the barista. Also, if you do decide to continue with the sweetened milk, let the milk be the sole sweetener for the coffee drink and decide against the additional syrups or drizzles. Especially the whipped cream. I know, it’s good. But this is a coffee order — not a dessert.
2. Fix Up the Coffee Yourself
Instead of asking the barista to add the milks, sugars, syrups, and mix-ins, head to the self-serve station. You can better control how much of each add-on goes into your cup and better manage how many calories and sugar you are consuming. You can also add a couple shakes of cinnamon, vanilla, or nutmeg powder to amp up your drink’s flavor and tone down the unneeded calories.
3. Keep It Small
Do not trick yourself into thinking you need a trenta-sized coffee. No one needs a trenta-sized coffee. It might be time to evaluate your life and sleep schedule if you are opting for the biggest and baddest of coffee drinks. Some large-sized coffee drinks can end up containing more calories than your breakfast and lunch.
If you think you need the extra caffeine, opt for a smaller-sized cup and ask for an extra shot of espresso. You can still enjoy the extra morning jolt without the bulk of empty calories.