Starbuck Coffees & Weight Loss
By: Nutritionist S. Keith Klein IV CN CCN
Relapse Prevention: Beverages
Drinking coffee in America has become a new American pastime. Coffee shops have become popular places to meet friends and colleagues, and many Americans start their day with a cup of coffee. The rise of specialty coffee shops has made it easier to access high-quality coffee, and the abundance of coffee shops has contributed to the popularity of coffee drinking in America. It’s hard to know the exact number of coffee shops in America because it’s constantly changing, but estimates are about 30,000 coffee shops in the United States.
Drinking black coffee while trying to lose weight has certain benefits. The first one is that black coffee, or more accurately, the caffeine in coffee, boosts your metabolism. Caffeine stimulates your central nervous system, which in turn increases your metabolism and helps your body burn more calories throughout the day. Secondly, caffeine increases energy because it’s a stimulant that can help you exercise longer and harder, thus leading to more calories burned and weight loss. That’s why having a cup of coffee before a workout can be beneficial.
Caffeine is also an appetite suppressant and can help to reduce hunger by blocking certain hormones that stimulate hunger. This can help you to eat less and lose more weight. Essentially black coffee is calorie-free and allows you to drink something that adds to your energy levels but doesn’t do it by adding more calories. And believe it or not, black coffee contains essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can be good for you when consumed in the right quantities.
Things go seriously wrong when people move from drinking black coffee to these specialty exotic coffees, which end up more like ingesting a dessert than something helpful. And when someone trying to lose weight also loses track of what they are putting into their body, their calorie, fat, and sugar intake can soar through the roof. For example, Starbucks coffees can be incredibly high in calories and a hidden source of excess sugar and fat for those trying to lose weight. Starbucks drinks like the Frappuccinos can contain upwards of 300-400 calories and over 50 grams of sugar, making them a less-than-ideal choice for those trying to watch their waistline. Therefore, it is essential for those trying to lose weight to be aware of what’s in their Starbucks drinks and choose lower calories, sugar, and fat.
Once again, since Starbucks has more than 15,000 locations in America, by law, they have to publish the nutrient content of everything they serve so the public can access it if they want to. Here are a few pointers to help you interpret the information. To convert grams of sugar into packets of sugar, divide it by four. So when you see 58 grams of sugar in your coffee, it also contains fourteen and a half packets of sugar! Remember that a low-sugar diet is 40 grams daily or less. So if your coffee has 30 grams of sugar, which is almost your entire day’s requirement, you have little wiggle room to meet that requirement by the end of your day.
And remember to do the fat formula we teach you in Lean Body Coaching. So when you see that your coffee has 8 grams of fat and 260 calories, that means your coffee is almost 30% fat, which is the same calories and fat in one slice of Domino’s cheese pizza!
However, where the real math comes in is to think about how many times a week you drink that specific coffee. For example, let’s say you have one White Chocolate Mocha, without whipped cream, Grande, with 2% milk, Monday thru Friday on your way to work each week. By multiplying the single numbers by five, you can accurately see that you are drinking 2,000 calories and seventy-two and a half packets of sugar every week. Remember, as a reference, when you buy a box of sugar packets, there are exactly 100 of those packets within each box. Another way to look at it might be by the month. This would mean that you ingest 8,000 calories and two hundred and ninety packets of sugar every month just by drinking one of those coffees daily!
Here’s the nutrient content of some popular coffees from Starbucks.
Black coffee, 3-5 calories depending on size, zero fat, zero sugars.
Caffe Latte, Grande, 2% milk, 190 calories, seven gms of fat, 17 gms of sugar.
Caffe Mocha, without whipped cream, Grande, 2% milk, 260 calories, 8 gms of fat, 34 gms of sugar.
Flavored Latte, Grande, 2% milk, 250 calories, 6 gms of fat, 35 gms of sugar.
Caramel Macchiato, Grande, 2% milk, 240 calories, 7 gms of fat, 32 gms of sugar.
White Chocolate Mocha, without whipped cream, Grande, 2% milk, 400 calories, 11 gms fat, 58 gms of sugar. (Which is about the same as drinking a Sweet Potato Latte at these popular Korean tea shops).