It’s turning out to be the eternal struggle for those living in developed nations: the battle of the bulge. Trying to keep the spare tire deflated. Not changing clothes sizes from year to year.
In short, avoiding gaining weight is just about everyone’s battle to fight.
That being the case, all kinds of diet plans are sold every year, as well as books on how to lose weight and feel great, and the argument on types of calories eaten as opposed to the amount.
The difference is important. Empty calories – those that come with little or no nutritional value – are completely avoidable, and one way we consume them can be eliminated.
That way is drinking them.
A national Beverage Guidance Panel made up of six leading nutrition experts came together recently to decide on beverage guidelines for the U.S.
The panel made a list of recommendations, but the item that impressed me most was their ranking of beverages to fulfill our daily liquid needs. Water was ranked as the preferred beverage (big surprise); followed by tea and coffee; and low-fat (1% or 1.5%) and skim milk and soy beverages. Ranked after that were artificially sweetened beverages, then fruit juices and alcoholic beverages (which have calories but some nutritional benefits), then whole milk, and then sugar-sweetened drinks.
Someday “expert” panels on nutrition most likely will revise such a list to switch around low fat and soy given current research, however, the point is taken that too many of these drinks can and do add calories that have zero value to the human body to a daily total. It is somewhat of a hidden source and one that can be eliminated fairly easily. Naturally flavored teas and sparkling water can be just as refreshing.
Coffee with cream, on the other hand…nothing wrong with a daily indulgence.