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Reduce Your Daily Calories By Changing Your Bevarages

Updated on January 27, 2011
The best choice of beverage.
The best choice of beverage.

Think back to your childhood - what did you drink most often? My guess is water or milk, with the occasional Kool-aid as a treat. Growing up in the south, we also drank iced tea a lot. Think about what you drink each day now. Think about what kids these days drink each day. It is certainly not water, rarely milk and Kool-aid is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to sugary options. What do you drink in an average day?

The average American gets 21% of his daily calories from beverages. Think about it: Juice at breakfast, specialty coffee drink on the way to work, soda for lunch, energy drink in the afternoon, wine/beer in the evening to unwind and you have easily consumed 500-1000 calories in just what you are drinking alone. If you are like me these drinks don't fill you up, so we eat our regular meals on top of all these drinkable calories. No wonder so many Americans are obese. Let's take a look at some of your average drinks and figure out the calorie counts. I looked on individual company websites when I could find the information and also referred to Calorie Count as well to gather what I needed.

Coke - 100 calories per 8 oz serving, a can is 12 oz or 150 calories, a 20 oz bottle is 250 calories

Diet Coke - 1 calorie per serving

Mountain Dew - 110 calories per 8 oz serving

Starbucks Cafe Mocha (my favorite) - 174 calories in a tall that contains non-fat milk and no whipped cream

Dunkin Donuts Coffee With Cream - 70 calories

Minute Maid Orange Juice - 110 calorie per 8 oz serving

Cranberry Juice Cocktail - 137 calories per 8 oz serving

Iced Tea - bottled ready-to-drink Nestea is 86 calories per 8 oz serving, Lipton 100% Green Tea - 0 calories per serving, Chick-fil-A Sweet Iced Tea - 230 calories per large

Skim Milk - 90 calories per 8 oz serving

Carnation Instant Breakfast (chocolate flavor) - 130 calories per packet

Red Bull Energy Drink - 110 calories per 8 oz serving

Sports Drink - Powerade - 120 calories per bottle, Gatorade - 50 calories per 8 oz serving

Wine - 85 calories per 3.5 oz serving

Beer - Michelob Ultra - 95 calories per serving, Sam Adams - 210 calories per 16 oz bottle

Swiss Miss Hot Chocolate - 138 calories per 8 oz serving, Swiss Miss Fat-Free Hot Chocolate - 50 calories per 8 oz serving

Water - none

Tropical Punch Kool-Aid - 64 calories per serving

Crystal Light Raspberry On The Go Drink - 5 calories per serving

Emergen-C Immune Defense - 25 calories per serving

I have by no means listed all the different drink options out there, but you can easily look at the nutrition label on the beverage you are drinking to see how many calories, and more importantly how many servings, are in the bottle, cup or can. I know when I drink a glass of milk it is more than eight ounces, in fact I believe the cup I use is twelve ounces. This means that when I have a glass of milk I am drinking 135 calories.

Do you see how it can add up quickly? Not all beverages are bad for you; in fact some on the list are very good for you. But you have to be aware of exactly how many calories you drink each day and think about making some changes. For instance coffee with cream has more than 100 fewer calories than a Cafe Mocha. Choose skim milk over whole milk. Have green tea instead of sweetened tea. Have a glass of wine every now and then, but maybe not every single night.   If you want to lose weight the first place I would recommend to cut calories is in the beverage category. You might be surprised at how many calories you drink each day.


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    • Hashirraja profile image

      Hashirraja 6 years ago from Dhaka, Bangladesh.

      Food Science Chef provides high quality and cost-effective new food product and beverage development services and qualified experience for the food and beverage development industry.

    • Ingenira profile image

      Ingenira 7 years ago

      Drinks are the normal overlooked calories added into our diet, affecting our weight management program. Even the homemade and nutritious juice can bring added calories to the diet, and reducing it can make significant difference in one's diet program.

      This hub serves well as a good reminders.

    • RicardoE profile image

      Ricardo Enrique 7 years ago from Guatemala City

      I drink LOTS of coke... is just that is so delicious :(

    • DiamondRN profile image

      Bob Diamond RPh 7 years ago from Charlotte, NC USA

      I took off 14 pounds in one year by switching to water during the day. I drink coffee and juice in the morning, water all day and whatever I want after 6 PM.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

      I have been doing this for a couple years and although my weight hasn't come down but it stopped increasing.

    • BennyTheWriter profile image

      BennyTheWriter 7 years ago from Northeastern U.S.A.

      Great hub, Jennifer! I'm trying to watch my calorie intake and it's mind-boggling how easy it is to go overboard. Fortunately, I've been drinking a lot more water and green tea lately. Thanks for the useful reminder to always check the label!