You’ve probably heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It starts your metabolism, helps energize you, and gets you ready for the day. Many of us stop to grab a coffee or some other fast food drink for breakfast in the morning. However, there are some that you should avoid if you’re trying to be healthy; ordering one of the drinks below means consuming an entire meal’s worth of calories, and as much sugar as a can of pop. Don’t worry – we also have tips on ordering healthier alternatives so you don’t have to completely skip your morning coffee!
• Cappuccino Blended Coffee Many items like this are high in calories, but did you know they could be loaded with 470 calories or more for a 16-ounce cup? That’s a whole meal! All it’s missing is the nutritional value.
• Frozen Coffee You might want to choose this as an alternative to your normal hot coffee, but these drinks are a sugar overload. A 16-ounce cup can have 400 calories and 65 grams of sugar.
• Iced Flavored Latte Many people like sugar in their coffee, but if you’re a fan of lattes in the morning, it might be better to ditch drinks like this. Adding flavored syrup to an already creamy latte can amount to over 400 calories, 17 grams of fat, and 48 grams of sugar.
• Frappe Chocolate Chip/Caramel With caramel, chocolate chips, and coffee, this drink might sound tasty, but you might have already guessed it isn’t the healthiest choice. Containing 500 calories and 21 grams of fat (or more), this is definitely one to avoid, and that’s before options like whipped cream, topped with even more chocolate and caramel.
• Frozen Vanilla Latte By now, you probably don’t expect this to be healthy, but this drink is a no-go, especially if you’re watching your waistline. Starting at around 420 calories, they also manage to cram in 75 grams of sugar.
Seeing all this, it’s easy to think that there are no good options from your favorite coffee places. Actually, there are a number of things you can do to opt for healthier choices. First, many restaurants have calories for their beverages available online. Checking ahead of time to compare can let you get something tasty without feeling the sugar overload. It can also be as simple as skipping whipped cream, or only asking for one pump of flavor syrup. Some places even have sugar in their cream, so if you ask before ordering, you might be able to have your coffee be sweet enough without added sugar. If you have time, you can also look up how to make some of these for yourself in the morning, so you can control how much sugar and extras go into them. Of course, plain coffee is a much better choice, but a little extra thought can let you still enjoy your favorites without the heaping helping of guilt.D.J. Martino is a Grant Writing Assistant at Primary Health Network; he joined PHN in November 2012. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English from Thiel College and a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from Southern New Hampshire University. Outside of work, D.J. enjoys gaming (video, tabletop, and cards) and hanging out with friends, and he is currently trying to publish his first fantasy fiction novel!