An Eye-Opener on Liquid Calories

15 04 2013

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One of my readers contacted me last week and brought my attention to an article that was recently published over in the UK. Before going any further, let’s remember 2 key points that I’ve mentioned in the past:

  1. If you are trying to lose weight and/or burn fat, you should avoid consuming liquid calories
  2. Sugar is killing us, and is largely responsible for most of the chronic health problems in our society (moreso than saturated fat and other scapegoats)

I’ve touched on these points many times, but in case the message hasn’t hit home, please take a look at the article on The 15 WORST sugary drinks in Britain. The pictures (courtesy of www.dred.com) say far more than writing ever could. Here are some of most shocking findings of the article, and some of the most impressive (read: disgusting) pictures:

  • Single serving of white grape juice (1 cup/250 mL) contains the same amount of sugar as four Crispy Cream doughnuts

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  • Starbucks venti white chocolate mocha with whipped cream as much sugar as ten bowls of Golden Grahams (and as I mentioned a few days ago, many breakfast cereals contain a crazy amount of sugar)
  • Not a coffee drinker? Starbucks venti soy vanilla spice hot chocolate has as much sugar as five Kellogg’s strawberry Pop Tarts

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  • Burger King large chocolate milkshake has over 100 g of sugar, equivalent to an entire strawberry cream pie

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  • Bottle of Pret freshly squeezed orange juice (500 mL) has as much sugar as thirteen oatmeal cookies

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  • Rockstar punched energy & guava (500 mL) has the same amount of sugar as twenty chocolate chip cookies

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I’ll stop there, but I think you get the point. It’s hard enough to try to calculate the number of calories we get from our meals when we eat out; sticking to water at least ensures that we aren’t taking in a gratuitous amount of one of the most harmful “nutrients” on the planet.

Before signing off, I’d just like to take a parting shot at fruit juices. As I pointed out above, both grape juice and orange juice have a crazy amount of sugar (even the “no sugar added” types). Apple juice, grapefruit juice, and almost any other fruit juice will have the same problem.  “Fruit juice” should really be relabeled as “Liquid fruit sugar”, because that is exactly what it is. Whole fruits are extremely healthy and nutritious and should be included in almost all diets. Fruit is indeed full of sugar (which is why even fruit should be limited for those of us looking to lose fat), but it is also full of valuable fibre and nutrients. Fruit juice is sugar, with a few nutrients, but leaves most of the awesomeness behind. Again, and as I’ve been preaching- stick to consuming foods in their natural state. Fruit juice isn’t necessarily a processed food, but it the worst part of fruit and is packaged in a more convenient and easy-to-consume medium (liquid); sounds like a processed food to me! The sooner we all start viewing fruit juice as being equal to soda (it is), the sooner we can get away from the myth that fruit juice is “part of a healthy breakfast” and “a great way to start the day”. False. Morning insulin spikes will ruin your day. And make you fat. And sick. Stick to water, coffee, and tea and you’ll but much better off!

That’s all for now, hope everyone had a great weekend! Happy Monday!

DW