Autumn is just around the corner and the coffee shops are starting to sell their Pumpkin Spice Lattes, Pecan Lattes and Salted Caramel Cappuccinos.
On those cold, wintery days there’s nothing more satisfying than a hot cup of coffee to lift your mood.
But, be careful!
While they are very tasty, they are also super high in calories and packed full of sugar.
If you’re trying to lose weight, they can easily tip your calorie and sugar intake over your limit and bring your weight loss efforts to a halt.
Check out the nutritional content of the popular coffee drinks below:
Note: the recommended daily sugar intake for adults is 6 teaspoons per day, and too much sugar results in storing body fat.
- A grande Pumpkin Spiced Latte made with semi-skimmed milk contains 424 calories and 49.7 grams (12.5 teaspoons) of sugar. DOUBLE the recommended daily amount for adults.
- A grande Caramelised Pecan Latte made with semi-skimmed milk contains 275 calories and 36.8 grams (9 teaspoons) of sugar. That’s one and a half times the daily recommended amount for an adult.
- A Massimo Speciality Gingerbread Latte made with semi-skimmed milk contains 194 calories and 33.8 grams (8.5 teaspoons) of sugar. That’s nearly one and a half times the daily recommended amount for adults.
So, if you’re a bit of a coffee junkie and you have 3 Pumpkin Spiced Lattes per week, that’s your recommended sugar intake taken up with just 3 coffees! That’s without all of the other food and drinks that your consuming that week too. You see how easy it is to go over your sugar and calorie allowance?
What can you have instead?
Espressos and Americanos are great because they are low in calories and don’t contain and sugary syrups or milk. Meaning you can enjoy a nice hot cup of coffee without tipping you over your calorie allowance.
If you really can’t resist a flavoured latte, then you can ask for it to be made with soya milk (which has less calories that cows milk) and half the amount of syrup, so that it lowers the number of calories that you are consuming.
Can coffee help you lose weight?
A coffee can actually be very helpful with weight loss if you use it in the right way.
Caffeine is a stimulant and can help improve your focus. It makes you feel more alert and can spur you on to be more active. So, if you time your coffee right, it can help you have a more energetic workout meaning you will burn more calories and body fat.
On the other hand, too much coffee has the opposite effect. It will make you feel sluggish and tired.
My advice is:
If you’re having more than one per day then try to cut down so that you avoid sugar cravings.
Avoid coffees with milk or cream, lattes full of syrups and don’t use sugar or sweeteners as this will bump up your calorie intake and prevent you from losing weight.
The best time to have a coffee is about half an hour before your workout to make you more alert and focused. You’re more likely to push yourself harder during the workout if you’re alert. On days that you don’t have a workout scheduled, mid-morning is the best time to get a caffeine hit as this is usually when most people have a dip in concentration.
Personally, I don’t drink coffee after 4pm because I’m wide awake come bed time. If you find it hard to get to sleep on a night try reducing your caffeine intake, especially in the afternoon.