Avoid These Drinks For Your Health & Wellness

Avoid These Drinks For Your Health & Wellness

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You Are What You Drink

Sometimes quenching your thirst comes at a high price, in fact, what you drink matters as much and sometimes more than what eat. So many drinks are unhealthy and if you are choosing to live, a healthy life and follow a healthy diet, then you need to choose drinks that are healthy as well.

There are many drink choices for you to choose from, and some of them are worse than others, in fact you maybe surprised by some of those that made this list of the worst drinks for your health.

Oftentimes the drinks you think are okay or may even love are actually filled with sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and lots of calories. Keep in mind that when it comes to calories it does not matter whether they are from food or something as seemingly harmless as a liquid, they all add to your waistline contributing to obesity and related serious health problems. Worse yet is that these high sugar drinks are typically devoid of any nutritional value, making them even more unhealthy.

Let’s look at the most unhealthy drinks and how they are harmful to your health.


22 Worst Drinks For Your Health

Soda

Soda includes fruit flavors and colas. Arguably, the absolute worst, most unhealthy drink ever made, soda is a concoction of chemicals and sugar, that’s it. Nothing else. No nutrients, nothing good, and actually all that is bad.

8 Ounce Can Of Soda

  • 150 EMPTY Calories
  • 39 grams of sugar

Ingredients:

  • High fructose corn syrup
  • Caramel color
  • Phosphoric acid (artificial coloring and chemical preservative)
  • Caffeine

Better Option: Club soda

Diet Soda

Think diet soda is okay? Think again.

There are the artificial colors that may cause cancer, flame-retardants, lots of nasty chemicals and fake sugars that actually contribute to weight gain.

While the artificial sweetener, aspartame that is often found in diet soda is supposed to be a sugar substitute that supports weight loss, it may have the exact opposite effect.

Your body is smart, and so when you ingest artificial sweeteners it registers it as something sweet coming in, which makes it anticipate calories, but since there are no calories in diet sodas the body reacts in confusion by stimulating the release of hunger hormones causing cravings for high-carb disasters, such as cookies, chips and other unhealthy junk food.

Better Option: Club soda

Energy Drinks and Shots

When you turn over an energy drink, the nutrition label is missing and replaced with a supplement facts panel. These two labels look very similar, and to consumers, there may seem like there is no difference at all. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case.

U.S. News points out that while nutrition labels are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the supplement industry isn’t. They have little oversight as to what they must disclose about their products. Many energy drinks don’t disclose all the stimulants that go into the product and will often list a “proprietary blend.”

This means that you can be drinking dangerous amounts of stimulants, or even stimulants that interact with your current medications and not even know it.

These drinks contain, among other ingredients, lots of caffeine, guarana, ginseng, taurine, ginkgo biloba, glucuronolactone, and sugar.

The Substance Abuse And Mental Health Services Administration reports that emergency room visits connected to energy drinks doubled in numbers from 10,068 visits in 2007 to 20,783 visits in 2011.

Adverse Effects Related To Energy Drinks:

  • Individuals may experience abnormal heart rhythms or other cardiac problems after consuming only two energy beverages according to a study done by the American Heart Association. The amount of caffeine in most energy drinks can cause heart problems like atrial fibrillation and increased blood pressure. There are warnings on most energy drinks not to consume more than one energy drink a day, and those warnings stem from the increased number of cardiac cases seen due to the consumption of energy drinks. According to Medicaldaily.com when people consume energy drinks in excess physicians who see unexplained altered cardiac patterns should look to energy drinks as the source of the problem.
  • One unfortunate effect of the increase of energy drink consumption is the increased rates of late miscarriages, stillbirths, and low birth-weight babies.
  • Energy drinks alter perception of fatigue and pain, which means that a person might push themselves past their natural limits.
  • Marked hypocalcaemia (low calcium levels in the blood serum)
  • An increased risk of arterial hypertension and type 2 diabetes in adults, which reduces Insulin sensitivity
  • High amounts of caffeine can result in negative effects on the neurological and cardiovascular systems in teens and kids, which can cause physical dependence and addiction
  • Tachycardia, agitation, irritability, nervousness, and insomnia are seen with high doses of caffeine. Caffeine toxicity presents in a similar fashion to amphetamine poisoning and can include cardiac arrhythmias, seizures, and psychosis.

The World Health Organization reports ample research that links consumption of energy drinks with high-risk behavior, such as combining them with alcohol. One study of US College students discovered that the combination of alcohol and energy drinks resulted in a higher probability of adverse reactions as compared to drinking alcohol only.

Better Option: Natural caffeine sources, coffee, green tea and black tea.

Sports Drinks

Sports drinks are used to replenish electrolytes lost during exercise or sporting activities, but the problem is that most come with a high price tag: sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and lots of sodium.

8 Ounce Serving Contains:

  • 35 grams of sugar
  • High-fructose corn syrup listed as a top ingredient
  • 270mg of sodium

Better Option: Natural Electrolytes Blends

Electrolytes balance bodily fluids and hydrate the body to greatly boost energy and you can skip the high sugar sports drinks with these naturally low sugar electrolyte boosters.

Natural Electrolyte Nutrients

  • Sodium
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • Chloride
  • Magnesium

Natural Electrolyte Foods

  • All plant foods but especially red, orange, and yellow fruits and vegetables – high in potassium and magnesium
  • Beets
  • Oranges
  • Bell peppers
  • Green leafy vegetables are high in calcium, magnesium and potassium – kale, chard and spinach
  • Bananas – high in potassium
  • Natural sodium foods – celery, beets, bok choy and bell peppers
  • Sunflower and sesame seeds – high in calcium and magnesium

Drink It

  • Any of these ingredients can be blended into smoothies or juices
  • Add a teaspoon of salt to water to make a quick natural electrolyte boosting drink

Frappuccinos And Other Coffee Drinks

Coffee is very healthy but add to it a ton of sugar, syrups, drizzles, whipped cream and artificial flavors and you turn a great thing very bad.

Mochaccinos, Frappuccinos, and other coffee drinks often have as many as 1000 calories per serving; really offsetting all the great benefits, that coffee has to offer.

Bottled coffee drinks sold in supermarkets and convenience stores are filled with sugar and fat from cream and milk and also preservatives, something has to keep them fresh since they sit on store aisles without requiring refrigeration.

Better Option: Drink your coffee black, or add ultra filtered milk or a dash of fresh cream, in the summer pour it over ice for a healthy coffee treat.

Bottled Nutrition Shakes

Many bottled nutrition shakes are not as healthy as they are perpetrated to be, containing lots of sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, and even hydrogenated oils (trans fats).  Always read the labels, and check the list of ingredients.

Better Option: Get a high quality casein or whey protein powder and make your own protein shakes.

Fruit Juice Drinks

Fruit juice drinks are disasters, filled with sugar, and some have high-fructose corn syrup, and artificial flavors.

Better Option: Juice your own fruits and vegetables, when you can control the ingredients you control your health.

Bottled Smoothies

Bottled smoothies maybe convenient but many are filled with extra sugars, and lots of calories. By using sugar in the form of fruit puree, manufacturers get away with the “no sugar added” label tricking consumers into thinking they are getting a low sugar drink, when in fact that puree adds lots of sugar and extra calories.

Some smoothie products that do not require refrigeration will also contain artificial ingredients and preservatives to extend shelf life.

Better Option: Make your own smoothies, so you get lots of nutrients and none of the bad.

Vitamin Infused Water

A product that is infused with vitamins must be healthy right? Think again, as those vitamins come at a high price in the form of tons of needless sugar and other junk that you don’t need.

33 grams of sugar per bottle! That is only 3 grams less than soda!

Better Option: Take a multi vitamin instead or simply eat more vegetables and other plant foods to get your vitamins.

Bottled Ice Tea

Bottled ice tea is another high sugar disaster, and some products have high fructose corn syrup and preservatives.

Consider the fact that fresh tea spoils without refrigeration, so how many chemicals are keeping those products fresh on the shelves?

Better Option: Brew your own tea at home or buy all natural UNSWEETENED fresh brew tea products stored in the refrigerated aisles of the supermarket but be sure to check the list of ingredients.

Flavored Milks

Love the strawberry, banana, and other flavored milk products? Think again!

Sweetened milks are really bad drink choices as they contain artificial additives such as carrageenan; they are loaded with sugar and they are lower in protein than other milk products.

The sugar in flavored milks is not the naturally occurring lactose found in regular milk, but is granulated white sugar added during the production process.

These sugar filled disasters are often given to kids, sometimes to get them to drink milk, a really bad idea since they are filled with so much refined sugar.

Better option: Mash fresh strawberries at home and mix them into milk or make milk and berry smoothies.

Sweetened Nut Milks

Sweetened nut milks are loaded with unnecessary added sugar and therefore empty calories that contribute to weight gain. Always choose unsweetened nut milks.

Nut milks are also lower in protein than animal or soymilk. Almond milk for example is only 2% real almonds, so they lack the vitamins, minerals and have less protein than eating nuts in their raw form.

Better option: Choose unsweetened nut milks or eat whole raw nuts

Regular Milk

Grain fed cow milk has more sugar, and less protein than grass fed cow milk, which is also higher in omega-3 fatty acids (heart health), and conjugated linoleic acid (improved immune system health, healthy bone mass, and reduced body fat).

Oh, and if you ever taste organic grass fed milk, you will never go back to the traditional stuff.

Better option: Ultra filtered organic milk has only 5 grams of sugar (50% or less than regular milk) and double the protein of regular milk.

Eggnog

Your holiday tradition is loaded with fat, sugar, and cholesterol.

8 ounce serving:

  • 223 calories
  • 11 grams of fat (7 grams saturated fat)
  • 150 mg cholesterol
  • 137mg sodium
  • 20 grams of sugar

Is there anything more that needs to be said?

Ice Cream Milkshakes

Who doesn’t love a cold, sweet, and rich ice cream milkshake? But before you head to your favorite ice cream shop, think again.

Here is a glimpse into what is inside a 100 gram Oreo Milkshake from a famous eatery:

  • 830 Calories
  • 52 grams of fat (29 grams are saturated fat)
  • 245 mg cholesterol
  • 310mg sodium
  • 100 grams of sugar

And this is just one example, some others are far worse having 150 grams or more of sugar and double the calories.

Better option:

  • Make your own cold smoothies using ice, nonfat Greek yogurt, and fruit
  • Blend sugar free nonfat frozen yogurt, filtered milk and fresh berries or dark chocolate (60% cacao) for a healthier version of the milkshake

Instant Hot Cocoa

Instant cocoa is another dismal disaster that turns a great thing bad. High quality cacao contains key antioxidants that promote good health and prevent premature aging, but instant cocoa drinks add tons of sugar that make them very unhealthy.

Better option: Make your hot chocolate using high quality cocoa powder and keep the sugar to a minimal.

Coffee Creamers

Here is a perfect example of the disastrous results that occur when food is made in a factory.

  • Some brands of coffee creamers contain titanium dioxide (also used in sunblock), a UV radiation blocker used as a whitening agent that in studies with mice caused tissue and liver damage and has been  implicated in various ill health effects in humans
  • Contain trans fats (hydrogenated oil) a real heart killer
  • Flavored creamers (hazelnut) are loaded with unnecessary added sugars
  • Numerous creamer brands contain a form of butane called TBHQ

Better option: Ultra filtered milk or any grass fed milk or even a dash of real cream or half and half

Packaged Coconut Water

Packaged coconut water products often contain way more sugar (as much as two times) than you need or that you should ingest especially as compared to natural coconut water. Furthermore, packaged coconut water products contain much less fiber than the real thing.

One of the key benefits of coconut water is its content of potassium, a natural electrolyte that helps hydrate your body. A study conducted by Consumer Lab found that two of the most popular brands of coconut water actually did not contain the amount of potassium electrolytes listed on their labels.

Better option: to rehydrate after a workout, eat a banana and drink some fresh filtered water, eat some red, orange, or yellow fruits or vegetables, all of which are naturally high in potassium and magnesium (natural electrolyte) or make them into a juice or smoothie.

Sugary And High Fat Cocktails

Next time you’re at your favorite bar, consider this:

  • Pina coladas contain coconut cream, a high fat disaster that yields 792 calories and 83 grams of fat per serving, 74 grams of that fat is  saturated fat (too much is bad for the heart). What’s worse is that low-quality coconut oils are processed using a process that leaves behind chemical residues and often include hydrogenated oil (trans fat, a heart killer). Typically one Piña Colada will have more than 650 calories, lots of sugar and fat and zero nutrients.
  • Long Island ice tea has 400 or more calories
  • Flavored martinis have 400 or more calories
  • White Russians, which are made with Kahlua, vodka and heavy cream or milk have a minimum of 750 calories and 23 grams of fat per drink
  • The mudslide, a mix of Kahlua, vodka, Bailey’s liquor and cream or ice cream is another high fat very high calorie disaster that yields at least 800 calories and more than 20 grams of fat per drink
  • Fruity margaritas include premade mixers that are high in sugar and often contain high fructose corn syrup
  • While numbers vary, the average can of beer has at least 150 calories, and who has just one in a night, after 4 beers, that’s 600 calories and empty calories

In general, the fanciest cocktails are usually the highest in calories and sugar.

Better option: hard liquor such as scotch, tequila, or vodka with club soda, water or fresh lemon, lime juice or Triple Sec. Red or white wine, bloody Mary with fresh tomato juice and light beer are also better choices.

Slushies and Icees

Slushies and icees are sugar loaded high empty calorie junk, but it’s worse than yet.

Many fast food places and convenience stores do not clean the machines that make these drinks as often as they should (if ever) and so your drink may wind up being filled with mold.

Better option: make frozen fruit pops at home, freeze any fruit you like and enjoy!

Frozen And Premixed Cocktails

Frozen and premixed packaged cocktails are loaded with empty calories (on average 280 plus per drink, some have more than a donut), sugar, preservatives and high fructose corn syrup!

Better option: Add muddled strawberries and fresh lemon slices as your mixer or simply opt for club soda added to your favorite hard liquor with fresh limes or lemon. 

Ginger Beer

Ginger beer is one of the unhealthiest beers on the market with more calories than your average soda at 170 calories for each 7-ounce serving.

Better option: light beer

Avoid The Market Shelves

There’s more bad news. Consider for a moment that most fresh whole foods require refrigeration or they spoil. This goes for dairy, produce, meats, and drinks.

So, what do you think is in all those drinks that sit on store shelves, what is keeping them fresh? Chemicals, chemicals and more chemicals, most you can’t even pronounce. Not something, you really want to put into your body.

Check Labels

Check nutritional labels of any drinks you are considering as you can quickly assess their sugar content, calorie counts, and nutritional value.

Also, look at the list of ingredients and be on alert for:

  • High fructose corn syrup
  • Trans fats (hydrogenated oil)
  • Sodium
  • Chemicals, additives and preservatives

Final Thoughts

Do any of the above surprise you? Maybe they do, especially since some are advertised and marketed with kids in mind.

What you drink matters as much as what you eat, and it’s really up to the consumer to take the time to read labels, investigate ingredients and nutritional data to make the best choices for good health.

Drink well and take care!

Avoid These Drinks For Your Health & Wellness

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