Some more healthy drink options include the following and you can print off the text below and take it with you to the supermarket to find those options and brands:
Water – LOTS OF IT! 🙂
Hot or cold drinks, in general, are good at satisfying cravings and desires for sweetness
Herbal Tea – hot or iced
Black Coffee (+/- a dash of milk/cream, but no sugar)
Stevia-based drinks (Stevia is a naturally occurring sweetener that is the only safe sweetener I know of)
Mineral sparkling waters like “Nexba” www.nexba.com – there are lots of nice flavours
- Schweppes zero sugar and infused mineral waters (still check the calories and sugar load and type of sweetener. Stevia is ok, others avoids)
Low/No sugar kombucha choices like “Remedy Kombucha”. Kombucha is a fizzy probiotic drink that often comes in lots of different flavours
Low-calorie stevia based cordial like Bickfords light cordial
For homemade juice/smoothies:
There are lots of recipes out there, so I will instead mention some of the potentialingredients and you can go wild (you don’t have to use them all!). If they are composed mostly of these ingredients then they are probably fine:
Water, almond/hemp/coconut milk, frozen berries (black, blue, straw,rasp), spinach, zuccini, cucumber, celery, lemon, ginger, mint, cocoa, turmeric, cinnamon, chia seeds, hemp seeds, ground flaxseed/linseed and limited amounts of carrot/beetroot/apple/pineapple +/- pea protein powder to feel full.
I have to make specific mention to liquid calories, which means any fluid that has calories like juice, soft drink, energy drinks, iced tea with sugar, iced coffee, milk, cordial and so on.
This is by far the most common source of weight gain and unnecessary and unhealthy calories in your diet.
Almost always – these are not good for you and are not necessary in anyway for your body or mind. If you have them it is purely because you are putting your taste buds ahead of your body and brain. There are about 17 teaspoons of sugar in a small 600ml bottle of coke…. 17!! That is like 6 scoops of ice cream in a bottle. It is so bad for you. Just don’t think soft drinks. The same goes for refined juices like bottled orange juice, apple juice, where just 250mls, which is one glass of these juices has ~6 teaspoons of sugar. It is comparable to coke. So please don’t think it is much healthier.
So please don’t be fooled into thinking that because it is fruit juice it is healthy. It is not. Even when they say on the bottle “no added sugar”, there is still a lot of naturally occurring sugar. To make one glass, 250mls of orange juice takes ~4 oranges but removes all the fibre and pulp from the juice and just leaves the sugar. It is not natural to eat fruit like that. If you want fruit – just eat real whole food fruit. Skip the juice. The only exception to this is juice that you make yourself at home, like green smoothies etc, some of these can be very healthy.
So drinks you want to completely cut out or mostly cut out are:
- Energy drinks
- Soft drinks
- Pre-bottled fruit juice
- Ice coffee and ice teas
- Added sugar to your coffee/teas
So what can you drink? Well, the truth is the only drink you need is water. But I get some people want more, especially when you first stop the sugary sweet drinks.
So some more healthy drink options include the following and you can print off the text below and take it with you to the supermarket to find those options and brands:
- Hot or cold drinks, in general, are good at satisfying cravings and desires for sweetness
- Herbal Tea – hot or iced
- Green/Black Tea
- Black Coffee (+/- a dash of milk/cream, but no sugar)
- Stevia-based drinks (Stevia is a naturally occurring sweetener that is the only safe sweetener I know of)
- Mineral sparkling waters like “Nexba” www.nexba.com
- Low/No sugar kombucha choices like “Remedy Kombucha”. Kombucha is a fizzy probiotic drink that often comes in lots of different flavours
- Low-calorie stevia based cordial like Bickfords light cordial
- Homemade juices/smoothies – see some recipes in the link below
That is actually a lot of choices. But be very careful to avoid drinks like coke zero and pepsi max because whilst these, in theory, have no calories the sweeteners they do have may cause issues as I discuss in an upcoming video. Also, be careful of terms like “no added sugar” because that doesn’t mean there is no sugar, it just means they haven’t added any, for example, fruit juice has lots of naturally occurring sugar.
For milk which is a complex one because it has some nutritional qualities like calcium and protein. Keep in mind that roughly one glass of full cream milk is about 150 calories, similar to a glass of coke. So be conscious of these as many people I have looked after many people who get lots of extra unnecessary calories from milk. There are milk alternatives like soy milk which is about 80 calories per glass and high in protein, almond milk which is about 40 calories and a good option for homemade smoothies and coconut milk about 50 calories. I would avoid rice milk.
What about alcohol?
For general health – most guidelines suggest either no alcohol or max 1-2 standard drinks a day, with 2-3 days off per week. And this changes with time so that is just general information, please check the actual guidelines.
It’s a big topic as not all forms of alcohol are equal, but specifically for weight loss and alcohol, remember alcohol does have calories, as do the mixers often added to them. One glass of wine is ~120 calories and one shot of many spirits is ~90 calories. Then if you add coke or ginger ale to that then that is quite a lot.
So, if you are going to drink alcohol, which again you don’t need to, then here are some better choices depending on your preferences:
- Low-carb beers – there are more and more options here and they can be very nice, so try them out
- Spirits – have them straight, or with ice (“on the rocks”), or with water, or with tonic and lemon
- Red or white wine – just limit the number, but at least there are some antioxidants in them that are good for you.
Juice recipes – Just google it and find something you like! But here are some I think are quite good at first glance (please note this is NOT an endorsement of this site, https://www.fitnessmagazine.com/weight-loss/plans/juicing/juicing-recipes/