chug-a-lug…

The July/August 2008 issue of Men’s Health listed America’s 10 worst drinks. Looking at this at face value, one would think these were alcohol-related beverages. Not quite.

Not surprisingly, all ten drinks contained mostly sugar. Basically, empty calories.

Couple of years ago when I decided to get back in shape, one of the things I removed from my diet was soda or pop, as most Washingtonians call it. I also retrained myself to carefully read the nutritional label and make better food/drink choices.

Based on the FDA’s recommended daily caloric intake of 2000 calories for adults and children aged 4 and over, just one or two servings of these drinks use up nealry a quarter of our allowance. Plus, they do nothing for us nutrionally. For me, I would rather trade these sugar-bombs for a nice piece of steak or a burger. At least either will keep me full and my belly happy.

So, here’s the list according to Men’s Health. Read it and learn from it. And don’t say I didn’t warn you…

10. Worst Milk Beverage: Hershey’s Chocolate Drink

Per 8 oz. carton: 130 calories, 26 grams (g) sugar; contains more water than milk

9. Worst Soda: Sunkist Orange

Per 12 oz. can: 190 calories, 52 g sugar; more sugar per ounce than any other soda

8. Worst Spritzer: R.W. Knudsen Family Tangerine

Per 12 oz. bottle: 200 calories, 46 g sugar; “no sugar added”

► 7. Worst Bottled Green Tea: SoBe Green Tea

Per 20 oz. bottle: 250 calories, 63 g sugar; to make regular iced tea this sweet, you’ll need 16 sugar packets

► 6. Worst Juice Drink: Arizona Kiwi Strawberry

Per 23.5 oz. can: 352 calories, 82 g sugar; you’ll have to eat 11 cups of fresh strawberries to get this much sugar from the whole fruit

► 5. Worst Fountain Drink: 7-Eleven Double Gulp (filled with cola)

Per serving: 534 calories, 130 g sugar; equals 2 liters of soda

4. Worst Hot Coffee Drink: Starbuck’s Venti 2% Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha

Per serving: 660 calories, 95 g sugar; more added sugar than average person consumes per day

3. Worst Frozen Coffee Drink: Dairy Queen Caramel MooLatté

Per 24 oz. large: 880 calories, 115 g sugar; a large DQ chocolate only has 580 calories

2. Worst Smoothie: Jamba Juice Peanut Butter Moo’d Power Smoothie

Per 30 oz. serving: 1170 calories, 169 g sugar; as much sugar as 12 bowls of Froot Loops!

1. Worst Drink In America: Cold Stone Creamery Oh Fudge! Shake

Per 20 oz. Love It: 1660 calories, 160 g sugar; has almost ¾ cups of sugar AND more calories than six McDonald’s hamburgers.

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