Want To Improve Your Health? Avoid These 4 Drinks

This tip is courtesy of Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging: Your Online Guide to the Anti-Inflammatory Diet. For more nutrition and health guidance, start your 14-day free trial now!

Last week we discussed four healthy drinks that you shouldn’t feel guilty about reaching for. Whether you are watching your weight or just want to eat healthier, taking a look at what you drink is key. Empty calories can lurk in all types of beverages – especially these:

  1. Coffee drinks with extras such as sugar, sweetened creamers or flavored syrup. These deliver a concentrated dose of quick-digesting carbohydrates and processed inflammatory fats that can lead to weight gain. A better option is a plain coffee with a little organic half-and-half, or, better yet, enjoy antioxidant-rich green tea instead of coffee.
  2. Frothy summer cocktails. Whether it’s a margarita or a piña colada, sugary drinks pack a double dose of calories due to alcohol and sugar – some can top 800 calories in one drink! A better option is a glass of red wine (60-100 calories) or a light beer (about 100 calories).
  3. Non-juice “juice drinks.” Before buying bottled juice, read the label and make sure it is 100% juice (not just “made with” real juice) and check for added sweeteners and calories. Many of these products are no better than drinking sugared water. The best juices are fresh, not bottled, and made partially or wholly from vegetables rather than fruits. If you consume fruit juice, I recommend diluting it with purified or sparkling water to reduce the sugar content.  Over time keep lowering the amount of juice to gradually cut back on unnecessary calories.
  4. Soda. There just isn’t anything nutritious about soda, whether it’s diet or regular. If you’re a soda addict, breaking the habit is among the best moves you can make for your weight and your health. Consider switching to sparkling water with a slice of citrus.

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