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Don't Let Coffee Break Your Diet

Fancy flavorings can turn normally low-calorie coffee into a diet buster. Here's how to keep your latte lean.
WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Medical News

Feb. 21, 2003 -- How do you take your java -- cream, flavored, whipped, topped? All those add-ons are piling up the calories. Coffee black may be boring. But it could save you up to 600 calories your waistline doesn't need.

"Depending on the kind of milk and ingredients used, a large latte can contain from 250 calories to as many as 570 calories," according to information from the February issue of the Mayo Clinic Women's HealthSource. "And those delicious chocolate or blended coffee drinks you love also can add up to 500 calories or more."

Coffee in its "purest" form has no fat and no calories whatsoever. But here come the shockers:

  • Two tablespoons of flavored nondairy creamer (liquid) adds 80 calories and four grams of fat (as much as a pat of butter).
  • Two tablespoons of flavored syrup adds 80 calories, but no fat.
  • One tablespoon of cream adds 50 calories and six grams of fat.
  • One tablespoon of liquid plain nondairy creamer has 25 calories and two grams of fat.
  • One tablespoon of half-and-half has 20 calories and two grams of fat.
  • Cappuccino (espresso, steamed milk, foamed milk) has seven grams of fat and 137 calories when whole milk is used; four grams of fat and 109 calories with low-fat milk; just under a half gram of fat and 80 calories with fat-free milk.
  • Coffee latte (espresso and steamed milk) has 212 calories and nine grams of fat when whole milk is used; 167 calories and six grams of fat with low-fat milk; 123 calories and 0.6 grams fat with fat-free milk.
  • Coffee mocha with whole milk (espresso, cocoa, steamed milk) has 340 calories and 20 grams of fat with whipped cream; 260 calories with six grams of fat without whipped cream.
  • Coffee mocha with low-fat milk has 302 calories and 16 grams of fat with whipped cream; 220 calories and six grams of fat minus whipped cream.
  • Coffee mocha with fat-free milk has 264 calories and 11 grams of fat with whipped cream and 182 calories; two grams of fat without whipped cream.

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Choose the smallest size cup, either eight or 12 ounces. This can save you up to 110 calories.
  • Ask that your beverage be made with fat-free milk instead of whole milk. This saves you about 80 calories and up to eight grams of fat.
  • Use a sugar substitute instead of real sugar. One tablespoon of sugar is 15 calories.
  • Order coffee without whipped cream, flavored syrup, chocolate or candy pieces.

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