Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Coffee: Small Changes Big Rewards

One of the most frustrating things about being a dietitian is helping people. One of the most rewarding things about being a dietitian is helping people.

The majority of the US has a weight problem or has had a weight problem at one point in times. Data on "overweight" and "obesity" shows us this. The "obesity epidemic" also points to this fact.

The frustrating thing about weight management for me is how weight gain seems to happen so rapidly usually without us noticing. But when we try to control our weight and make healthy choices, it seems to take forever! Or maybe that was just my journey with the "freshman 15."

I am a big proponent of moderation - in food choices and exercise. I like the idea of small changes and big results. I like small, maintainable changes that turn into a lifestyle of better choices.

If you are like many Americans, you choose a caffeinated beverage every day or almost every day. Since this is an everyday choice, small changes can result in big results . . . over time of course. Here are a few suggestions for ordering your favorite coffee drink or making it at home.

1. Adjust the Size
Say "tall" instead of "venti." Or, say "small" instead of "large." On the average specialty drink, you can cut approximately 200 calories by ordering a 12 ounce or tall instead of a venti or 20 ounce coffee.

2. No Whip
If you are watching your saturated fat or calorie intake, two words can help "no whip." Say it with me "no whip." By cutting the whipped cream, you save between 60-70 calories with a tall or venti respectively.

3. Try It Skinny
Saying "skinny" tells your favorite barista, aka the one who is making your coffee today, that you want skim milk instead of the standard 2% milk. This saves you 60-70 calories with a tall or vent respectively.

Three simple solutions that take less than 30 seconds can make a big difference over time.

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