Do you know how much sugar and fat are being added to your daily coffee?
Tactful marketing can often mislead consumers into making decisions that can have alarming affects on blood sugar and cholesterol. Many of our patients go to Tim Hortons daily and order a double double, believing that their coffee contains 2 teaspoons of sugar. In reality they’re often getting much more than just 2 teaspoons of sugar:

  • A large Tim Hortons double double contains 7.5 teaspoons of sugar, 8 grams of saturated fat, and 264 calories
  • A medium Tim Hortons french vanilla contains 10 teaspoons of sugar, 9 grams of saturated fat, and 310 calories
  • A large Starbucks pumpkin spice latte contains 15.5 teaspoons of sugar, 12 grams of saturated fat, and 510 calories
  • A medium Starbucks cafe mocha contains 8.75 teaspoons of sugar, 11 grams of saturated fat, and 400 calories

It can be easy to forget about the sugar and fat content of beverages. However, if you’re trying to manage your weight, blood sugar, or cholesterol, it’s important to not only consider what is in your food, but also your beverages. A person who may need 1800 calories per day could get almost 30% of their daily calories, half their daily saturated fat and much more sugar than their body needs from one specialty coffee.

Small changes can make large differences. For example, ordering a Tim Hortons coffee with 2 milks instead of a double double decreases the sugar to 1.5 teaspoons (from 7.5 teaspoons), saturated fat down to 2 grams (from 8 grams), and calories down to 60 (instead of 264 calories). Check out our strategies below to help you enjoy your favorite coffee while making it a little more healthy!

  • Why not try skim or 1% milk instead of cream?
  • Is it time for coffee or dessert? Consider skipping the whipped cream next time
  • Try soy milk when on hunt for a creamy texture
  • What about asking for sugar packets on the side? This way you’re in control of how much sugar is added to your beverage
  • Ask for half the amount of flavor shots to help cut down on excess sugar
  • Add a teaspoon of honey instead of multiple flavor shots
  • Mix in cinnamon and nutmeg to add flavor without sugar
  • Try a flavorful full leaf tea for a change
  • Consider downsizing. Order a small specialty coffee instead of the large

References
http://www.timhortons.com/ca/en/menu/nutrition-and-wellness.php
http://www.starbucks.com/menu/drinks/espresso/pumpkin-spice-latte
http://www.starbucks.com/menu/drinks/espresso/caffe-mocha
Image from http://starbucks.com

What’s In Your Cup?
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