Dietitians share 2 beverages that are “key” to avoid for healthy weight loss

When it comes to healthy weight loss, some drinks can easily derail your progress and negatively impact your gut health. To better understand which sugary drinks may be particularly bad for your health and weight loss goals, we reached out to dietitians and nutritionists to discuss two beverages that are key to avoid: canned and carbonated energy drinks and bottled, sweetened iced coffee.

Read on for tips, suggestions, and insights from Kelsey Butler, MS, RDN, Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist at Coastal Dream Life; Dana Ellis Hunnes, PhD, MPH, RD, Senior Dietitian at UCLA Medical Center, Assistant Professor at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health, and Lisa Richards, registered nutritionist and creator of The Candida Diet.

1. Canned energy drinks

If you want to lose weight in a healthy way, choosing foods and drinks that are good for your gut is key, explains Butler. That, he says, is why sipping on sugary energy drinks can prevent weight loss, as they often cause illness, make nutrient absorption much more difficult, and can lead to dehydration. “Fizzy energy drinks can negatively impact gut health because they can cause stomach upset, interfere with nutrient absorption, and contribute to diarrhea,” he notes.

Butler adds that these drinks “stimulate the release of acid in the stomach” which can lead to more heartburn and indigestion. Second, “the high sugar content in these drinks can cause diarrhea by drawing water into the intestines” (which also leads to dehydration). The caffeine in these drinks may also contribute to diarrhea by increasing intestinal motility, he cautions.

“The worst kind of soda would be high-caffeine, sugary energy drinks like Monster or Red Bull,” he continues. These drinks, she reiterates, can cause problems like “diarrhoea, malabsorption and dehydration.” If you’re still into sipping on a soda and want to pick one that’s *really good* for your gut, Hunnes recommends kombucha.

Kombucha, she says, is a fermented tea beverage that is “rich in beneficial probiotics and also high in antioxidants (from the tea).” Probiotics and antioxidants are anti-inflammatory and can “help promote gastrointestinal health by helping colonize the gastrointestinal tract with healthy bacteria (known as probiotics),” she explains.

2. Bottled, sweetened iced coffee

Many processed coffee drinks contain added sugars, sweeteners and fats, says Hunnes, and these can prevent you from losing weight. “Think creams, syrups, flavors and colorings (caramel coloring),” he explains. When you go to your favorite coffee shop, “a lot of the syrups they’re adding have a lot of sugar in it, and that can add a lot of extra calories—hundreds in fact,” she warns.

Hunnes notes that drinking this first thing in the morning with breakfast can also slow weight loss, while drinking coffee black or with a natural sweetener can actually help your weight loss progress.

“A black coffee is zero calories, but with common syrups and creamers that are used, and any whipped toppings, this can make a zero-calorie drink now closer to 300 or 400 calories,” Hunnes says, noting, “It’s pretty much a meal .” Instead, Richards recommends trying a monk fruit sweetener rather than sugar.

“Refined sugar, commonly called table sugar, is a bad type of sugar for many reasons,” says Richards. “This type of sugar is sucrose and is highly inflammatory as well as a food source for Bad intestinal bacteria”.

Hunnes agrees and recommends: “I strongly encourage people to consider getting a black coffee and then add a couple tablespoons of their favorite non-dairy beverage and an extract (eg, vanilla extract, almond extract, etc). .) And spices like cinnamon or cloves.”

This, she says, will add “heat, flavor and far fewer calories,” your gut will thank you, and you’ll be more on your way to healthy weight loss!

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