I adore visiting coffee shops, as I’m sure you do, but I’m also sure I avoid the worst things to order at coffee shops so I don’t get myself in trouble! Many coffee shop drinks contain well over 500 calories, even if you don’t order the largest size available. Fun toppings like syrup, whipped cream, or sauces also increase the calorie count. Don’t fall prey to racking up a day’s worth of calories by choosing the worst things to order at coffee shops. I think you’ll find that with all the other healthy options out there, you have plenty of other items to choose from that you can still enjoy, and that won’t ruin your waistline at the same time.
Let’s start with one of my favorite things, but one of the worst things to order at coffee shops of all. I’m such a stickler for mocha flavors, but regular mocha frappes contain well over, or close to, 40 grams of sugar- in a small! Your best best is to stick with a “Skinny” mocha at Starbucks or other coffee shops, which is made with sugar-free mocha syrup. Sure, it has artificial sweeteners, but if you’re dying for a mocha, it’s pretty good, and consider it a splurge for only 11 grams of sugar from the milk in the drink.
Those bran muffins at coffee shops not only look healthy, but look pretty tasty too. But let me warn you, they’re anything but healthy. Most all are made with oils, eggs, and lots of sugar, plus most have refined flour. This can cause the muffins to contain well up to 350 calories in just one muffin, or possibly more. Your best bet is to order a plain oatmeal, and have them sprinkle on some cinnamon, add a splash of skim milk, add in some stevia if you want, and order some fruit on the side. Oh, and if you're wondering about other muffin options, the blueberry and banana nut, pumpkin spice, and all other varieties are just as unhealthy as those supposedly healthy bran muffins too.
Another item that appears to be healthy at coffee shops, but is far from it, is the yogurt parfait. Yogurt parfaits, no matter how tasty, are incredibly high in sugar. Most all contain at least 35 grams of sugar or higher. They’re also made with non-organic milk, which is a whole other issue when it comes to hormones in dairy, GMOs, and pesticides in regular dairy. Your best bet is to buy a plain Greek yogurt and order some fruit on the side. Granola is also usually added to yogurt parfaits and is very high in sugar and fat, all on its own.
I used to love having a blueberry bagel in the morning. I also loved carrying the cinnamon raisin bagels with me to school. Bagels look healthy, but the carbohydrate content in them proves otherwise. Add on some cream cheese and you’ve got a pretty fattening meal, just in a few measly bites. Bagels contain almost 50 carbs if you eat both of them, and cream cheese added to them just brings the calorie count higher. Your better bet is to order oatmeal, or even an English muffin, preferably whole grain. While English muffins are still high in carbs, they’re a better choice than starchy bagels. Be sure to eat some lean protein like eggs or egg whites with your meal to reduce the insulin spike too.
From the white chocolate mocha, to the salted caramel frappe, to the peppermint mocha, there are so many unhealthy holiday drinks to tempt us at coffee shops. Be sure you avoid the regular versions if you don’t want to consume well over 400 calories in one sitting. Instead, order the skinny versions of these, or just opt for plain old coffee with some sugar-free syrup and milk added.
Coffee milkshakes used to be my go-to thing to order, and they were pretty delicious, I’ll admit. Yet milkshakes are obviously one of the worst things to order at a coffee shop. They’re high in fat, sugar, tons of processed ingredients, and will leave you hungry just a couple hours later.
Smoothies at coffee shops are just like muffins: they appear healthy, but are far from it. Smoothies are one of the worst things to order at coffee shops for a few reasons. First, they’re full of added sugar, contain well over 50 grams of sugar just from the fruit alone, and they’re also low in protein. This means you’re setting yourself up for an insulin spike, bloated belly, and weight gain in no time. While fruit is healthy, fruit smoothies are a different story. Better yet, order a piece of fruit and a cup of regular coffee. No guilt needed there!
My personal favorite healthy choices at coffee shops are simple regular coffee with a splash of milk, and I carry stevia to sweeten it. If I want a treat, I order a skinny mocha and try to forget about the artificial sweeteners for a day. I don’t drink them regularly enough for it to matter. Green tea is also a great option, but order plain, not the green tea blends with sugar added. If I’m hungry, I’ll opt for plain oatmeal with cinnamon and milk, or an egg white and spinach wrap without cheese. Simple, filling, and no guilt needed! What’s your favorite thing to order at a coffee shop?
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