MAKING LIFE BETTER: Rethink your drink for 2019!
One of the most common New Year’s resolutions is to lose weight, unfortunately by the middle of January many people have given up on their efforts. This happens for many reasons, but often because we “bite off more than we can chew” so to speak when it comes to making changes.
The best way to change is to pick one simple thing to concentrate on for a good six to eight weeks until it becomes a part of your everyday habits.
When it comes to healthier eating you may be surprised to know that a lot of the extra calories we consume during the day come from beverages. Drinking eight ounces of orange juice, one medium mocha coffee, 20 ounces of soda and 16 ounces of sweet tea provide approximately 1,000 extra calories in addition to the foods we eat.
Research indicates that our bodies do not respond to “liquid” calories the same as calories from food. In other words, these extra calories do not make us feel full, thus our body does not receive signals to stop eating.
The first step to rethink your drink is to take an inventory of all the beverages you consume during the day.
How much juice do you have for breakfast? Most juice size glasses we have in our homes hold at least eight ounces and that glass of soda you pour for dinner is probably close to 16 ounces. So, actually measure how much you are pouring if you can.
If you are like me you enjoy the special coffees at the local coffee shop or convenience store but they are loaded with calories from the “special ingredients” that make them taste so good. Even if you consume regular coffee or tea if you are adding sugar and cream, multiply that by the number of cups you drink per day and the calories quickly add up.
Once you have a list you can begin to see how many extra calories you may be consuming and begin to make a plan to change.
Obviously the best beverage choice is water; it has no calories, quenches thirst and is readily available. But let’s face it not everyone likes to drink water and even if they do they still like to consume other beverages as well.
Replacing all beverages with the “diet” version is not a good idea either. There is some recent research to suggest that increased consumption of these drinks promotes increase caloric intake as well. They do provide an alternative choice but should be used on a limited basis.
Below are some suggestions you can use to make healthy changes to your beverage intake without totally giving up some of your favorite drinks.
r Reduce portion size and/or the number of servings per day.
r If you don’t like plain water think about keeping a gallon of water in your refrigerator that contains slices of lemons, oranges, limes, strawberries, melon, cucumber, mint or ginger. Adding these ingredients provides a light flavor to the water that may make it more appealing. You can do the same to water added to a water bottle that you take to work.
r Order coffee shop coffees and teas with skim milk, no whipped cream and order the small size.
r Try reducing the amount of sugar and cream added to coffee and teas over time or try other flavored coffee and tea.
r Unless you are involved in high intensity aerobic exercise for at least 60 continuous minutes forgo the sports drink and replenish with water.
So if you rethink your drink choices to eight ounces of orange juice, one non-fat medium latte, 20 ounces of diet cola and a 16 ounce glass of water infused with lemon and lime the calories drop from 1000 to about 270 for a savings of 730 calories!
Rethinking your drink is an easy way to kick start your New Year’s.