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Low-Calorie Summer Sippers

Let's drink to summer -- the healthy way

Coffee House Hints continued...

2. Nonfat milk is the milk of choice. Asking for nonfat milk in your coffee drinks helps bring down the calories and fat while boosting the protein and calcium. Example: A "tall" Iced Caffe Mocha from Starbucks with nonfat milk has 130 calories and 1.5 grams of fat. The same drink made with whole milk has 170 calories and 6 grams fat.

3. When choosing a coffee with calories, order the smallest size available. Example: A "tall" Starbucks Caramel Frappuccino (no whip and with nonfat milk) has 210 calories and 2.5 grams of fat. A "Venti" size of the same drink totals 390 calories and 4.5 grams of fat.

Fruit Juice Fun

If a no-calorie beverage just won't do, 100% fruit juice is a good choice because it contains some nutrients, such as vitamin C, phytochemicals, fiber, and folic acid. But the calories can still add up if you have a tall glass of juice.

Cut the calories in your fruit juice in half by blending it with some zero-calorie seltzer water, club soda, or mineral water. One of my favorite juice spritzers is 1/2 cup of mango or passion fruit juice/nectar blended with 1/2 cup of seltzer water.

Warning: Make sure when you are buying flavored mineral waters and seltzers that they have zero calories. Some of the brands are sweetened as well as flavored.

Here are some recipes for more cool and low-cal summer beverages.

Lemon Cucumber Seltzer

Journal as: No need to journal because it contributes 0 calories.

8 cups seltzer water (or substitute club soda or mineral water)
24 slices cucumber, with or without peel (about 1/2 of a large cucumber)
16 slices lemon (about two lemons)

  • Pour 8 cups seltzer water into a clear pitcher. Add the cucumber and lemon slices and two trays of ice cubes. Stirring occasionally, let the ingredients chill together for about 10 minutes before serving.
  • When you pour into glasses, make sure each serving gets some ice cubes, several slices of cucumber, and a couple of slices of lemon.

Yield: 1 pitcher (about 8 servings)

Per serving: 0 calories, 0 g protein, 0 g carbohydrate, 0 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 g fiber, 40 mg sodium. Calories from fat: 0%.

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