Drinking for Weight Loss
You could be sabotaging your diet by what you drink. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports that 37 percent of the average American's daily liquid calories come from sugar-laden drinks. It's common for people to waste 400 or more calories a day on liquid with no or little nutritional content. The good news is that with only minimal effort, you could kick-start your weight loss and instantly remove hundreds of calories daily from your diet. The key to drinking for weight loss to help you reach your ideal weight is to choose your beverages carefully.
What Not to Drink
As you've probably already guessed, you should pop from your diet. But did you know that zero calorie diet soda is just as bad? You won't be consuming extra calories with each sip, but you could be confusing your brain's ability to measure calorie intake, according to research done by Purdue University in Indiana. The university, well-respected for producing multiple Nobel Prize and Pulitzer Prize winners, says in the diet soda study that drinking too much diet pop could cause you to crave sweets more. If the appeal of diet pop is the carbonization, try adding a zero-calorie seltzer to your glass of water instead.
Fruit juices are also packed with sugars making it easy to drink half your needed calories daily. It's better to eat the fruit instead and enjoy some of the other nutrients like fiber. A medium orange, for example, has three grams of fiber and 12 grams of sugar and 59 calories. An eight-ounce glass of juice has no fiber, close to 24 grams of sugar and 110 calories.
Cut out the alcohol if you're trying to lose weight. The average glass of wine is 100 to 120 calories a glass. Alcohol has also been known to stimulate your appetite and make you eat more.
And That Leaves....?
Water, of course. It's a healthy drink that has no calories. But there are other options for those who don't like the taste of water. Modest amounts of milk can help you lose weight as long as you drink skim. Researchers at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville report that a weight loss of 10 percent or more can be reached by having three low-fat dairy servings daily.
Coffee is okay as long as you avoid those sugar-and-cream-rich gourmet coffees from fancy coffee shops. Coffee has very few calories if you drink it black and with no sugar. Tea, especially some types of herbal teas like green tea, can stimulate your metabolism for up to 24 hours and help you lose weight. It's a great option as long as you don't use sugar or heavy creams. If you need flavor, use a small amount of honey and/or skim milk in either your coffee or tea.