If you’re like most Americans, you probably consume your fair share of added calories without even realizing it’ in the form of sugary drinks. Whether it’s the soda you have with your lunch or the vanilla latte you have on your way to work everyday, chances are you’re consuming way too much sugar in the form of beverages.
This is a dangerous phenomenon for many reasons. For one thing, while many people closely monitor the calories and sugar in the foods they eat, they very often tend to overlook beverages because they’re not food and they’re not filling. Drinks are easy to consume quickly because while you may not be able to eat while doing everything, you can do almost everything with a beverage at your side. So drinking three cans of soda without even realizing it is not that unheard of.
Also alarming: Our kids are drinking more of these drinks too. They’re learning these bad habits really young, and it’s not good for the future of our health.
And if you think drinking bottled fruit juice or diet drinks is a better choice, think again. Fruit juice that you buy in the store is almost always loaded with sugar; even if the label says it’s one hundred percent fruit juice. Anyone who’s ever put a whole apple in juicer and then compared it to the yellowish liquid you get in jugs at the store can immediately tell the difference. It doesn’t matter what the labels say; unless your juice comes from a piece of fruit that you saw being juiced through a juicer, you’re not getting anything but sugar.
Diet drinks, while not filled with real sugar and have no calories can be just as bad, as they contain artificial sweeteners and chemicals that can make you feel hungry when you’re not, and some studies have linked these drinks to cancer.
A good rule of thumb when you’re thirsty: drink water, or unsweetened tea that has been brewed with a tea bag. Stay away from soda, fancy coffee drinks, bottled fruit juice, juice drinks such as Kool Aid or fruit punch, sweetened and bottled teas, energy drinks, sports drinks, and anything labeled ‘diet’. Watch out for new flavored waters as well, as the flavor probably comes from, you guessed it: sugar. You should also think twice about alcoholic beverages made with sugar; this includes mixed drinks made with any of the above, or pre-made mixes you bought at the store.
Yes that’s a long list, and probably includes everything you drink on a regular basis. That’s the problem with these beverages. You can avoid all the cookies, candies and ice cream you want, but if you’re drinking the equivalent amount of calories and sugar every day, you’re wasting your time.
After a few days of drinking water, your body will actually start to crave it. Try it, and get on board. Cheers to you’re health!