Natural Candy

Let me ask you a question: what do you think of when you think of candy bars, do you think of the term “natural”? Yeah, I thought so neither did I. Natural and candy don’t often come to mind or go hand in hand for that matter. That’s why the brand Little Secrets set out to create a treat that won’t play a trick on your waistline. These candies are crafted with 55 percent Fair-Trade dark cocoa and zero artificial flavors and colors or corn syrup. Instead of dying the Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Pieces—their spin on Peanut M&Ms—with harmful dyes such as Yellow #5 and Red #40, the Colorado-born brand uses wholesome ingredients such as fruit and vegetable extracts.

If you’re not big on M&Ms (yes, there are people who hate M&Ms), Little Secrets boasts other sweet options to fulfill any candy bar craving including Gingerbread Cookie Pieces, Toasted Coconut Pieces, Dark Chocolate Pieces, Sea Salted Almond Pieces, and crunchy wafers that come in three flavors: milk chocolate, dark chocolate, and peanut butter. Besides snack rivaling a KitKat taste-wise, these bars strike a balance between airy crisp and creamy cocoa. And, we couldn’t help but notice the Milk Chocolate Wafer’s squeaky-clean ingredient list. The first two ingredients listed are milk chocolate and enriched wheat flour. To put that into perspective, the classic KitKat’s first ingredient reads sugar.


How does Little Secrets’ nutrition stack up against KitKat’s?

KitKat

Hershey’s OG offering packs in 210 calories, 11 grams of fat (7 grams saturated fat), 30 milligrams of sodium, 27 grams of carbs (<1 gram of fiber and 21 grams of sugar), and 3 grams of protein per one 1.5-ounce pack. Swap the creme-filled wafer for Little Secrets’ clean version and you’ll save 10 calories, 3 grams of carbs, and 3 grams of sugar.


Little Secrets milk chocolate wafer

While the caloric difference isn’t drastic, we especially love Little Secrets for its all-natural ingredient list. Unlike KitKat, you won’t find any vanilla—a synthetic flavoring agent linked to eye and respiratory tract irritation—or cheap emulsifiers such as PGPR in its recipe.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Bloglovin’ :Amanda Explains It

Bumble Bizz: Amanda

Poshmark: AmandaLei

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

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Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂


 

How To Quit Soda For Good

It’s no news that soda can derail your fitness goals. What increases the risk of weight gain, type 2 diabetes, and cardiovascular disease? If you guessed soda, you’re spot on. (Did the headline give it away?) According to a Journal of the American College of Cardiology report, the bubbly beverage really does live up to its villainous reputation. And if you think you’ve got nothing to worry about because you only sip a can or two per day, you’ve got things all wrong. Researchers had found that drinking just one serving of pop a day can increase the risk of fatal heart disease or heart attack by a whopping 35 percent. No fizzy drink is worth that risk—which is why you should seek out soda alternatives ASAP.

However, diet soda drinkers aren’t safe either, mainly because the beverages are filled with potentially carcinogenic chemicals like caramel coloring (which is present in the regular varieties, too) and artificial sweeteners. “Even though diet drinks are calorie-free, they cause insulin to be released in your gut because their artificial sweeteners are sweet like sugar,” says registered dietitian Miriam Jacobson. “Insulin is your body’s primary fat-storage hormone, so consuming it will cause the body to hold onto any extra fat.”

While your go-to source of hydration throughout the day should be water, it can be tough to go cold turkey if soda’s been a part of your routine for a while. While coffee, detox water, and tea can make the transition to a soda-free life easier, sometimes you just want to grab something with a bit of fizz or flavor that’s ready-to-drink. Thankfully there are tons of new healthy soda alternatives flooding the market that fit that very description, and I’ve got the scoop on the best of them (or so I think).


Spindrift

Spindrift half and half

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Nutrition, per can: 2-17 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0-20 mg carbs, 0-2 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

There are nine different flavors of Spindrift sparkling soda, all of which contain between zero and two grams of sugar. Eight of such flavors all embody delicious fruits, with fruit puree sweetening the fizzy drink. The flavor that sticks out among its counterparts is the Half & Half variety, which is a sugar-free lemonade and iced tea mixture. Fresh lemon juice and brewed black tea are splashed in carbonated water to achieve a refreshing drink.


Pepsi Bubly

Bubly sparkling water

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Nutrition, per can: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

Bubly is Pepsi’s sparkling water brand, and the cheerful cans aren’t the only thing that’ll make you smile. The line comes in 12 different flavors, including grapefruit, apple, orange, and cherry just to name a few. Replace a sugary soda with this carbonated beverage, and your flat belly goals won’t seem as unattainable.


Polar Seltzer

Polar seltzer

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

Do you know what the difference between club soda, seltzer, and sparkling water is? Believe it or not, the words are not interchangeable even though there are only very slight differences between the three. Seltzer has roots in Germany and, at the time, was pulled from a natural spring. While that may not be the case for all seltzer waters you see on the market today, Polar Seltzer water offers a long list of different, refreshing flavors, none of which cost you any calories.


Humm Kombucha

Ginger juniper kombucha

Courtesy of Humm

Nutrition, per can: 25 calories, 0 mg sodium, 6 g carbs, 5 g sugar

Added sweeteners: Agave nectar

Kombucha is the bubbly, antioxidant-rich, and probiotic-infused drink that serves as a great alternative to soda. Soda falls under a category of food and drinks called empty calories because it literally provides zero nutritional value, but costs you a good amount of calories and tacks on an inordinate amount of added sugar. Thankfully, Humm, based out of Bend, Oregon, recently released a lower-sugar kombucha, with two flavors including Ginger Juniper and Raspberry Hops.


La Croix Sparkling Water

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

Sure, the cans may look like something that’s filled with the latest boozy drinks coveted by festival-going college kids, but ask anyone who’s tried a can of the stuff (both young and old) and they’ll tell you: LaCroix sparkling water is straight up delicious. The bubbles are light and frothy and the flavor is just intense enough to be pleasing. It’s really no wonder that the drink has assumed a cult-like following.


Bai Lemonade

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Nutrition, per bottle: 5 calories, 5 mg sodium, 6-9 g carbs, 1 g sugar

Added sweeteners: Erythritol, stevia extract

The bulk of Bai’s beverages are made with white tea extract (which has been shown to break down fat) and various fruit extracts, and they’re all addictively delicious. Some of our favorites are the lemonade varieties. Burundi Blueberry, Limu Lemon, and São Paulo Strawberry Lemon make us feel like we’re drinking a far healthier version of a summery lemonade.


Perrier Sparkling Water

Perrier sparkling water

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Nutrition, per can: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

Perrier has been around since 1863, making it the longest standing company on this list. Today, the sparkling mineral water company produces eight different flavors of sparkling water, including green apple, peach, and even a hybrid of lemon and orange cleverly called, L’Orange. You won’t miss the sugar in these bubbly beverages.


Sparkling Bitters

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

While the name may be a bit off-putting (who wants to drink something bitter?!), don’t let that scare you away from this trendy elixir. This drink is made by blending sparkling water with the highly concentrated liquid extractions of herbs, roots, and fruit. (If you’re into craft cocktails, you’ve likely had bitters in boozy drinks like the Manhattan and the Sazerac.) Think of these bottles as the cooler younger sibling of tired seltzer.


Runa Zero Energy Drinks

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 1 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

If you want something that’s totally free of calories and sugar, Runa has got you covered. The company boasts six different flavors of energy drinks, three of which fall under the Zero energy drink category. The blood orange, watermelon, and lime varieties all have zero calories and sugar. What separates this energy drink from others, though, is that they’re all made from guayusa leaves—a plant that’s native to the Amazon rainforest with double the antioxidant capacity as green tea. They also all have 150 mg of caffeine, which is much more than the typical 95 mg a standard 8-ounce cup of coffee houses.


Upruit Sparkling Cold-Brew Coffee

Upruit sparkling cold brew coffee

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Nutrition, per can: 45-60 calories, 5-10 mg sodium, 12-15 g carbs, 9 g sugars

Added sweeteners: Maple syrup

Perhaps the best way to receive a burst of energy instantly (and in a healthy manner) would be to drink a cup or two of coffee. Ditch the added sugar-filled can of soda and opt for a can of Upruit’s naturally flavored sparkling cold-brew instead! We love this drink because you get that desired fizzy of texture along with 100 mg of caffeine, which is equivalent to what you would get in a cup of coffee. The only added sweetener in these drinks is maple syrup, but even then the 11-ounce drink has nearly 4.25 times less sugar than what a 12-ounce can of Sprite contains at 38 grams.


Tickle Water

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

It may be the first-ever sparkling water for kids, but even we are big Tickle Water fans. One staffer who tried the stuff said the cola flavor tasted “like sparkling water with a splash of Coke” but still thought it was a great soda alternative despite the less-intense flavor.


Vertical Maple Water

Nutrition, per container: 15 calories, 10 mg sodium, 3 g carbs, 3 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

Before Maple tree sap is boiled down to the consistency and sweetness of pancake syrup, it’s far thinner and less sugary. So, a handful of companies began pasteurizing and bottling the stuff, which they’ve aptly named maple water. It’s more or less like water, but it’s slightly thicker and carries a hint of sweetness. It carries a bit of added nutrition, too. A bottle provides 30 percent of the day’s manganese, a trace mineral that staves off disease-causing free radicals, reduces inflammation, and helps to maintain proper nerve function. According to the company’s website, Vertical Water is 100 percent pure and is the only U.S.-sourced maple water that is Non-GMO Project Verified.


Hint Kick

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

Hint Water may not be carbonated, cola-flavored, or sold in 64-ounce Big Gulps, but these new(ish) flavored bottled waters do have 60 milligrams of caffeine derived from coffee beans. That’s more than you’ll find in Diet Dr. Pepper (41 mg) or Mountain Dew (54 mg), so you’re sure to get the jolt your of energy your body needs—without having to down a bunch of chemicals or brew up a cup of coffee. Try the Lemon Cayenne Hint Kick (and don’t overdo it, since caffeine can dehydrate you), and you’ll probably never go back to Coke again.


Wtrmln Wtr

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Nutrition, per bottle: 60 calories, 0 mg sodium, 15 g carbs, 12 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

One of her albums may be called Lemonade, but Beyoncépromotes another kind of drink, too. Queen B has invested in WTRMLN WTR, a pressed juice with just three ingredients: watermelon flesh and rind, and lemon. Not only is it light and refreshing, but it’s also a functional beverage to boot. In a study of Spanish athletes, researchers found that watermelon juice can diminish post-workout soreness, likely thanks to its high potassium and magnesium content, two electrolytes that aid hydration, muscle relaxation, and restorative sleep. Sure the sugar count in the beverage is higher than in some flavored waters, but all of the sweet stuff comes from fruit. Simply put: Don’t sweat it.


Sparkling Live Drinking Vinegars

Nutrition, per bottle: 15 calories, 0 mg sodium, 3-4 g carbs, 2-5 g sugar

Added sweeteners: Stevia

By combining carbonated water, apple cider vinegar (ACV), coconut, whole fruit juice concentrate, and stevia, Sparking Live has created a gut-happy beverage that’s light in calories yet full of flavor. For years, health foodies and svelte celebs have said that ACV is their flat belly secret—and research published in the journal Bioscience, Biotechnology, Biochemistry explains why. In the study, participants who were given two tablespoons of ACV over a 12-week period lost more weight, body fat, and inches from their middle section than participants that were given just one tablespoon or a placebo. While the results were not terribly dramatic (they only lost about 3.7 pounds), the participants were not given an exercise or diet regimen to follow, which would have helped them shed additional weight.


Zevia Sodas & Energy Drinks

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Nutrition, per can: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: Stevia

This small company, founded by soda-loving parents who wanted something healthier for their children, distributes a variety of classic flavors, from cola to ginger ale to grape, without using artificial sweeteners or colors. Depending on which you pick, some of these sodas have a touch of caffeine. The flavor Dr. Zevia, for example, packs 42 milligrams of caffeine, which is about a little less than half of what a cup of joe would offer. The strawberry flavor, however, doesn’t have a single trace of caffeine, which makes it an ideal option for those later afternoon soda cravings without having to jeopardize your sleep.


Bai Bubbles

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Nutrition, per bottle: 5 calories, 10-40 mg sodium, 9-11 g carbs, 1 g sugar

Added sweeteners: Erythritol, stevia extract

Bai Bubbles, which comes in flavors like Guatemala Guava, Jamaica Blood Orange, and Bolivia Black Cherry, are sweetened with fruit juice, erythritol, and stevia and powered by 45 milligrams of caffeine, thanks to the tea and coffee fruit. They’re delicious enjoyed straight-up or as a mixer.


Sparkling Ice

Sparkling ice

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

There are 16 different flavors of Sparkling Ice, all of which pack various different vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A and D and even biotin. These beverages are both fantastic on their own and also make for great mixers!


S. Pellegrino

S. pellegrino water

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Nutrition, per bottle: 0 calories, 0 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar

Added sweeteners: N/A

This classic sparkling drink is made purely from natural mineral water. Similar to Perrier, S. Pellegrino has been around for more than 100 years, with its foundations beginning in Italy in 1899. Pop open a bottle of this smooth, fizzy, no-calorie refreshment.


Detox Water

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Nutrition, per bottle: 30 calories, 29 mg sodium, 9 g carbs, 8 g sugar

Added sweeteners: Organic agave nectar, organic stevia

By adding fruits that have detoxifying properties in their flesh and peels to water, you can sip your way slim with the right kind of detox water. What could be more awesome than that? Well, Detox Water comes close by taking the legwork out of the equation. To create their signature beverages, the drink combines water, agave, fruit juice flavors, and aloe vera (a potent skin firmer and fat burner), stevia and vitamins (like 14-18 percent of your day’s vitamin B6 and B12). While it’s more caloric than making a batch of detox water at home, it’s not a bad runner-up if you don’t have time to make it yourself.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Bloglovin’ :Amanda Explains It

Bumble Bizz: Amanda

Poshmark: AmandaLei

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

 

The Worst Sodas (Part 2)

 Here is Part 2 of the worst soda ranked! Today I bring you the worst “diet” sodas. If you missed part 1 you can click here


Diet Sodas

Diet soda isn’t really any better than regular because their artificial sweeteners are sweeter than sugar, resulting in a host of health issues (and weight gain). Diet sodas also harm the immune system because their acidity causes havoc with our gut bacteria. And the caramel coloring in many sodas contains an artificial form of phosphorous that’s been shown to leach calcium from our bones.

But while every diet soda is bad for you, some are clearly worse than others. Please read on to discover where your favorite cola landed—and discover my surprising #1 pick, which might become your new go-to.

How the sodas were ranked them: First, we measured the amount of artificial sweetener in each soda, paying special attention to aspartame, the most pervasive sweetener. The low-calorie sugar alternative, made by joining two amino acids with an alcohol, is 180 times sweeter than sugar—and the subject of controversy. Some researchers claim to have linked aspartame to brain tumors and lymphoma, but the FDA insists the sweetener is safe(ish) for humans. We gave demerits to diet sodas with high aspartame counts. We also docked points for high levels of ingredients you wouldn’t expect in your beverage—like vegetable oils and tree bark—and gave high marks to new brands with more natural blends.


Diet Mountain Dew

diet mountain dew

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 10 calories, 85 mg sodium, less than 1 g carbs, less than 1 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Concentrated Orange Juice, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors, Citrus Pectin, Potassium Benzoate (Preserves Freshness), Aspartame, Potassium Citrate, Caffeine, Sodium Citrate, Acesulfame Potassium, Sucralose, Gum Arabic, Sodium Benzoate (Preserves Freshness), Calcium Disodium EDTA (to Protect Flavor), Brominated Vegetable Oil, Yellow 5

There’s flame retardant in your Mountain Dew. That soda with the lime-green hue (and other citrus-flavored bubbly pops) won’t keep your insides fireproof, but it does contain brominated vegetable oil, a patented flame retardant for plastics that has been banned in foods throughout Europe and in Japan. Brominated vegetable oil, or BVO, which acts as an emulsifier in citrus-flavored soda drinks, is found in about 10 percent of sodas sold in the U.S. Don’t do the Dew: It’s the Worst Diet Soda in the World!


Tab

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Natural Flavors, Phosphoric Acid, Calcium Saccharin, Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Caffeine, Aspartame

Introduced in 1963—for people keeping “tabs” on their weight—TaB was Coke’s first calorie-free soda and the first to draw outcry because of its artificial sweetener. Between 1997 and 2000, the FDA mandated that saccharin-containing products carry a label warning consumers about the risk of cancer, due largely to the development of bladder tumors in saccharin-consuming rate. Saccharin still isn’t in the clear. One recent study funded by Purdue and the National Institute of Health showed that rats with a saccharin-rich diet gained more weight than those with high-sugar diets.


Fresca Original Citrus

fresca

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Citric Acid, Concentrated Grapefruit Juice, Potassium Citrate, Potassium Sorbate, Potassium Benzoate and EDTA (to Protect Taste), Aspartame, Acesulfame Potassium, Acacia Gum, Natural Flavors, Glycerol Ester of Rosin, Carob Bean Gum

I don’t know about you, but after a long day of hard work and play, I like to sit back and relax and crack open a can of Glycerol Ester Of Rosin. The wood resin is added to many fruit sodas to help the fruit-flavored oils mix better with the water. While it’s not necessarily harmful, let us repeat: you’re drinking oil and water, sold to you by Coke.


Pepsi True

pepsi true

Nutrition 12 fl oz., 100 calories, 26 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Sugar, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Natural Flavor, Caffeine, Purified Stevia Leaf Extract

Pepsi’s answer to Coca-Cola Life—also made with pure sugar and Stevia Leaf extract— says it’s “all the fun you love about Pepsi with 30% less sugar than regular Pepsi.” They forgot to add it also has 100% more sugar than you should be drinking out of a can.


RC Ten

rc ten

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 10 calories, 3 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Aspartame, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Potassium Benzoate (protects Flavor), Caffeine, Citric Acid, Acesulfame Potassium, Acacia Gum, Sucralose

Only the soda companies could blend two evils—High Fructose Corn Syrup and artificial sweeteners—and market it as a healthier choice. The Ten line does just that. Both Ten and a zero-calorie brand are bad.  For the sake of fewer bad ingredients, the zero-calorie is better. Especially when it comes to RC: This one has more sugar than the other Tens—and caramel color is the third ingredient.


Dr. Pepper Ten

best sodas dr pepper 10

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 10 calories, 2 g sugar

Ingredients: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Aspartame, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Caffeine, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Acesulfame Potassium, Sodium Phosphate

Shocker!  This soda may have just 10 calories but it’s still made with high fructose corn syrup. To easily burn off any of these sodas—without spending hours in the gym.


Sunkist Ten

sunkist ten

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 10 calories, 2 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Malic Acid, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Aspartame, Modified Food Starch, Natural Flavors, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine, Ester Gum, Yellow 6, Red 40

The artificial colors alone sunk this Sunkist. But you’re also drinking modified food starch—a catch-all term describing starches (derived from corn, wheat, potato or rice) that are modified to change their response to heat or cold and improve their texture. The starches themselves appear safe, but the nondisclosure of the chemicals used in processing causes some nutritionists to question their effects on health.


A&W Ten

A&W Ten

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 10 calories, 2 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Natural and Artificial Flavors, Aspartame, Acesulfame Potassium, Malic Acid, Quillaia Extract

Quillaia extract? The best (and worst) part of researching these sodas in the Eat This, Not That! Food Lab is coming across the weird ingredients soda manufacturers (in this case, Pepsi) add to their concoctions. Quillaia is a tree bark, and it helps your root beer foam up.


Canada Dry Ten

canada dry ten

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 10 calories, 2 g sugar[nutrinfo-black]Nutrition[NUTRINFO-BLACK]INGREDIENTS

Filtered Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Malic Acid, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Aspartame, Natural Flavors, Acesulfame Potassium, Caramel Color

Our moms used to give us Canada Dry Ginger Ale when we had a tummy ache. Now as adults, I get a tummy ache looking at it. Blame Canada. Their tagline is “Real Ginger, Real Taste” but the main ingredients here are carbonated water and artificial sweeteners.


7-Up Ten

7up 10

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 10 calories, 2 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Filtered Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Potassium Benzoate (preservative), Natural Flavors, Aspartame, Acesulfame Potassium, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor)

Of the Tens, at least this one has no caramel color.


Pepsi Zero Sugar (formerly Pepsi Max)

pepsi zero sugar

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Aspartame, Potassium Benzoate (preserves freshness), Caffeine, Natural Flavor, Acesulfame Potassium, Citric Acid, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor), Panax Ginseng Root Extract

Is your 7-11 sold out of Coke Zero, bro? Try this wannabe, which adds extra caffeine ginseng to fool dudes into thinking this is an all-natural energy drink.


Mello Yello Zero

mello yello zero

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar[nutrinfo-black]Nutrition[NUTRINFO-BLACK]INGREDIENTS

: Carbonated Water, Citric Acid, Aspartame, Sodium Benzoate And EDTA (to Protect Taste), Acacia, Potassium Citrate, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine, Sucrose Acetate Isobutyrate, Natural Flavors, Coconut Oil, Yellow 5

 

You know when you add some Mentos to a two-liter Diet Coke and the whole thing explodes? (Don’t try that at home.) That’s thanks to the Gum Acacia in the candy, which is also in this soda—it’s a natural emulsifier. Despite its weird name, is probably this most natural ingredient in this artificially-colored Zero.


Fanta Zero

best sodas fanta zero

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Aspartame, Natural Flavors, Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Modified Food Starch, Acesulfame Potassium, Yellow 6, Glycerol Ester Of Rosin, Coconut Oil, Red 40

Just like its full-calorie cousin, Fanta Zero is an unsavory blend of oils and artificial colors. Even without its unsettling origin story about Coca-Cola creating Fanta to profit in Germany when Nazis forbid USA-made Coke—this would still be gross.


Diet Sunkist

diet sunkist

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Aspartame, Malic Acid, Modified Food Starch, Natural Flavors, Caffeine, Ester Gum, Acesulfame Potassium, Yellow 6, Red 40

What do you get when you combine carbonated water with aspartame and a host of hard-to-pronounce chemicals? This citrus-inspired sip. It gets its alluring orange color from Yellow 6 and Red 40, which have been linked to hyperactivity.


Pibb Zero

pibb zero

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ):0 calories, 0 sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Aspartame, Potassium Sorbate and Potassium Benzoate (to protect taste), Artificial and Natural Flavors, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine, Monosodium Phosphate, Lactic Acid, Polyethylene Glycol

A “spicy” cherry soda found mostly in the South—or in Coke Freestyle machines—Pibb Zero contains propylene glycol, a preservative, thickening agent, and stabilizer, also used as antifreeze to de-ice airplanes, as a plasticizer to make polyester resins, and found in electronic cigarettes. A nutritional zero.


Diet Barq’s Root Beer

best sodas diet barqs

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Potassium Sorbate And Sodium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Aspartame, Citric Acid, Acesulfame Potassium, Artificial And Natural Flavors, Acacia, Potassium Chloride

I also recommend you limit Acesulfame Potassium—aka Ace K—a zero-calorie sweetener that often appears with sucralose or aspartame to create a flavor closer to sugar (it’s 200 times sweeter). Although the FDA does not recognize it as a carcinogen, some experts disagree, and large doses have been shown to cause problems in the thyroid glands of rats, rabbits, and dogs. It’s used here to sweeten the root beer, but you’ll also find it in Diet Pepsi, Fresca, and Coke’s Zero line.


Diet Mug Root Beer

diet mug

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (preserves freshness), Aspartame, Citric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Quillaia Extract, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor)

As with the A&W root beer, the ingredient to worry about here is not the Quillaia tree bark, but rather the caramel color and aspartame.


Diet Dr. Pepper Cherry

diet dr pepper cherry

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Aspartame, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Citric Acid, Phosphoric Acid, Caffeine, Malic Acid, Sodium Phosphate, Red 40

The Cherry version of Diet Dr. Pepper is worse than the original because of the artificial color Red 40, which Canadian researchers found to be contaminated with known carcinogens.


Diet Dr. Pepper Cherry Vanilla

diet dr. pepper cherry vanilla

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Aspartame, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Citric Acid, Phosphoric Acid, Caffeine, Malic Acid, Red 40

Like old school Cherry, the Vanilla also has Red 40—and no actual vanilla.


Dr. Brown’s Diet Black Cherry

dr. brown’s diet black cherry

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Cherry and Other Natural Flavors, Malic Acid, Aspartame, Sodium Benzoate, Sodium Citrate, Caramel Color and Artificial Color (red #40)

Another “doctor” prescribing Red 40. If Dr. Brown had a diploma, it’d be from the University of American Samoa.


Diet Dr. Pepper

diet dr pepper

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Aspartame, Phosphoric Acid, Artificial and Natural Flavors, Sodium Benzoate, Caffeine

Researchers found the aspartame count, in milligrams, of a Diet Dr. Pepper was 123 mg—the highest of all major sodas outside of Diet Coke.


Diet Mug Cream Soda

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Sodium Benzoate (preserves freshness), Aspartame, Citric Acid, Caramel Color, Yucca Mohave Extract, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor)

Don’t worry too much about the Yucca Mohave Extract—it just makes your artificially-sweetened carbonated water foamy. Instead, wonder: Where’s the cream?


Coke Zero Sugar

coke zero sugar

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Aspartame, Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Natural Flavors, Potassium Citrate, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine

After years of growth, sales are flatlining for this once-cool new brand, originally marketed as a masculine alternative to girly Diet Coke. But the key to Coke’s Zero Sugar’s meteoric rise (formerly known as Coke Zero) wasn’t dudes, it was the unique blend of aspartame (58 mg) and acesulfame potassium (31 mg). Suddenly, a diet drink tasted like real Coke! But it could make you fat like one, too. Even though diet drinks are calorie-free, they cause insulin to be released in your gut because their artificial sweeteners are sweet like sugar, and that actually prevents weight loss. Insulin is your body’s primary fat-storage hormone so it will have the body hold on to any extra fat. Trying to lose weight by trading a Coke for this is doing the body just as much harm, if not more, because of all the chemicals in the calorie-free version.


Diet Coke Cherry

diet coke cherry

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (to protect taste), Aspartame, Natural Flavors, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine

To make this even sweeter than old-school Diet Coke, they’ve added acesulfame potassium to the mix. As for actual cherry…..nope.


Diet Coke with Lime

diet coke with lime

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Natural Flavors, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (to protect taste), Aspartame, Citric Acid, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine

As with the Diet Coke with Cherry, this one’s made sweeter with Ace-K—and has citric acid, for the tang. Our question: Why not enjoy a Diet Coke with real lime?


Diet Coke

best sodas diet coke

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Aspartame, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (to protect taste), Natural Flavors, Citric Acid, Caffeine

The best-selling diet soda in the world has been losing market share to healthier alternatives, dropping from $4.4 billion in sales in 2005 to $3.2 last year. Meanwhile, tea sales are soaring. That’s because a study published in the journal Nutrition and Metabolism showed that white tea can simultaneously boost lipolysis (the breakdown of fat) and block adipogenesis (the formation of fat cells). The tea’s combination of caffeine and epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) seems to set fat cells up for defeat.


Diet Coke with Splenda

best sodas diet coke splenda

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Natural Flavors, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (to protect taste), Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine, Citric Acid, Tartaric Acid

After reviewing more than 110 animal and human studies, the FDA decided in 1999 to approve sucralose, aka Splenda, for use in all foods. Sucralose opponents argue that the amount of human research is inadequate, but even groups like the Center for Science in the Public Interest have deemed it safe. Too bad this one’s a bit hard to find.


Diet Pepsi

diet pepsi aspartame free

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (preserves freshness), Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Caffeine, Natural Flavor, Citric Acid

The soda giant claimed consumer demand—not science—was behind its headline-making decision to remove aspartame from its classic cola earlier this year. They replaced it with sucralose, aka Splenda and acesulfame potassium, aka Ace K. I’m applauding the move—but with one hand only. Sales of Diet Pepsi dropped 35 percent in the last 10 years, according to the Chicago Tribune.)


Caffeine Free Diet Coke

caffeine free diet coke

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Aspartame, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (to protect taste), Natural Flavors, Citric Acid

I’m not against caffeine—it’s proven to boost metabolism and aid weight loss—excessive caffeine screws with your sleep schedule and suppresses functions of key immune agents. And insufficient sleep opens the door to colds, upper respiratory infections, and other ills. So if you’re on your third can of DC for the day, switch to this, if you must (which I must from time to time).


Diet Rite

diet rite

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Sucralose, Citric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (preservative), Acesulfame Potassium, Natural Flavors, Acacia Gum, Potassium Citrate

The also-ran in the soda wars—usually a few cents cheaper—surprises me with this formula. It has zero aspartame (yay!) but also zero caffeine, which leaves me wondering, why would anyone drink this. Amirite?


Caffeine Free Diet Pepsi

caffeine free diet pepsi

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (preserves freshness), Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Natural Flavor, Citric Acid

As I’ve said, I’m into caffeine, as long as you don’t overdo it. But why drink a can of chemicals if you’re not even benefiting from the buzz?


Diet 7-Up

best sodas diet 7up

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Filtered Carbonated Water, Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Potassium Benzoate (Preservative), Natural Flavors, Aspartame, Acesulfame Potassium, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor)

What separates this from all the rest? No artificial coloring. But it’s still filled with artificial sweetener.


Sprite Zero

sprite zero

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Natural Flavors, Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Aspartame, Acesulfame Potassium

As with the Diet 7-Up, the Sprite Zero has no artificial colors. But why settle for artificial flavors?


Zevia Ginger Root Beer

zevia

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:Carbonated Water, Stevia Leaf Extract, Natural Flavors, Citric Acid

 

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

This small company, founded by soda-loving parents who wanted something healthier for their children, distributes a variety of classic flavors, from cola to ginger ale to grape, without using artificial sweeteners or artificial colors. Although the soda used to be flavored with sugar alcohols, it has ditched erythritol. Brilliantly, this root beer tastes like the real thing—and is clear, because there’s no caramel color.


Hint Kick Raspberry

hint kick

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 0 calories, 0 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Purified Water, Black Raspberry, Other Natural Flavors from non-GMO Plants and Natural Caffeine from Coffee Beans

 

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Hint Water isn’t carbonated, cola-flavored or sold in 64-ounce Big Gulps. But these new flavored bottled waters do have 60 milligrams of caffeine, derived from coffee beans. That’s more than you’ll find in Diet Dr. Pepper (41 mg), Diet Coke (47 mg) or even Mountain Dew (54 mg). So you get all of the pop, with none of the calories—and each flavor is sweetened not with aspartame, but with fruit juice or spice. Try the Lemon Cayenne Hint Kick (and don’t overdo it, since caffeine can dehydrate you), and you’ll never go back to Diet Coke again.


Bai5 Bubbles Bolivia Black Cherry

bai5 bubbles

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 6 calories, 1 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Filtered Carbonated Water, Bai® Proprietary Sweetener Blend™ (Erythritol, Stevia Extract), Natural Flavors, Cherry Juice Concentrate, Malic Acid, Citric Acid, Fruit and Vegetable Juice (for color), Coffeefruit Extract, White Tea Extract, Ascorbic Acid, Sodium Citrate

SHOP NOW ON AMAZON

Founded by coffee guru Ben Weiss in his Princeton basement, Bai5, a new line of all-natural fruity drinks with exotic flavors, is forecast to rack up $125 million in sales this year. We can see why: Their Bubbles line—with flavors like Guatemala Guava, Jamaica Blood Orange and Bolivia Black Cherry—are the definitive Drink This on this list of Not That!s. Sweetened with fruit juice, erythritol and stevia (not aspartame) and powered by 45 mg of caffeine, thanks to the tea and coffee fruit, they’re delicious enjoyed straight-up or as a mixer. Interestingly, rather than beat Bai5, one soda titan joined them: the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, who once only distributed the product, bought a stake in the company this past April. Meet the Best Diet Soda in America!


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


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The Worst Sodas

Did You Know: Philadelphia is the first major U.S. city to pass a tax on soda—1.5 cents per ounce, which is about $1 more for a 2-liter, Other cities have imposed similar taxes, including Berkeley, CA, San Francisco, Seattle, and Boulder, CO. The truth is that you don’t need to live in these locations to pay the price of drinking soda.

Although we call them “beer bellies,” new science says we ought to call our bloated midsections what they really are: soda bellies. In a study of about 1,000 adults over the course of six years, people who drank soda or other sugar-sweetened beverages gained an extra 1.8 pounds of visceral fat—the fat that sits inside your gut, damaging your internal organs and pushing your belly out into a King of the Hill–style slouch. To put that in perspective, 1.8 pounds is about how much a fetus weighs at 24 weeks. This means you can go from your lean, slim self to looking like you’re in your second trimester just by drinking a daily soda, sweetened iced tea, or fruit punch. (Talk about a punch to the gut!) But instead of carrying a bundle of joy, you’re carrying a bundle of toxic fat; visceral fat has been shown to increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, among other ills.

Why is soda so good at making us who drink it look bad? It’s the sugar. The USDA issued new guidelines in early 2016, recommending no more than 180 sugar calories per day for women (and 200 for men). This is the equivalent of approximately 45 grams of sugar—an amount that many sodas and other sweetened beverages exceed in just one can. And if it’s not sugar, then it’s an artificial sweetener, which can be 180 times sweeter than sugar and just as damaging to your waistline.


 Regular Sodas

sodas

First, I put them by calories, carbs, and sugar. Then, I examined each can’s ingredients and gave demerits to sodas with more chemicals and additives than those that were nutritionally similar. Here are regular sodas ranked from worst-to-best. (Although, “best” still doesn’t mean healthy!)


Fanta Grape

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 180 calories, 48 g carbs, 48 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Natural Flavors, Tartaric Acid, Potassium Sorbate and Sodium Benzoate (to Protect Taste), Citric Acid, Red 40, Blue 1

Liquefy a bag of Skittles and you’d still have to add 6 grams of sugar to equal the sweetness of this can of corn syrup, citric acid, and artificial colors. In fact, that bag of Skittles has the exact same ingredients, including Red 40, which Canadian researchers found to be contaminated with known carcinogens. Even without its unsettling origin story—the Coca-Cola company created Fanta to profit in Germany when Nazis forbade the importation of USA-made Coke—this would still be the absolute worst soda in America!


Stewart’s Wishniak Black Cherry

best soda stewarts black cherry

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 180 calories, 44 g carbs, 43 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Cane Sugar, Citric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Sodium Benzoate, Caramel Color, Red 40, Blue 1

With more sugar than seven Chewy Chips Ahoy cookies, Stewart’s Black Cherry would be a “Not That!” because of the sweetness alone—it’s the most caloric on this list. And, like many of the soda on this list, it also contains caramel coloring. This additive wouldn’t be dangerous if you made it the old-fashioned way—with water and sugar, on top of a stove. But the food industry follows a different recipe: they treat sugar with ammonia, which can produce some nasty carcinogens. A Center for Science in the Public Interest report asserted that the high levels of caramel color found in soda account for roughly 15,000 cancers in the U.S. annually. Instead, keep the soda-sipping to a minimum.


Dr. Brown’s Black Cherry

dr browns black cherryNUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 180 calories, 45 g carbs, 45 g sugar

 

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Cherry And Other Natural Flavors, Citric Acid, Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), and Artificial Color (Red 40)

With just two fewer grams of sugar than Stewart’s Black Cherry, Dr. Brown’s Black Cherry would horrify most doctors—and not just because of the sugar. Like Stewart’s—and many of the colored sodas here—this one has the artificial color Red 40, which is it ranks lower than our next entry, despite having less sugar.


A&W Cream Soda

best sodas aw cream soda

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 170 calories, 46 g carbs, 45 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Caramel Color, Citric Acid, Yucca Extract, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Caffeine

A&W traffics heavily in the nostalgia of the roadside restaurant—the company created the nation’s first chain of them in 1923. But their cream soda is a car crash of HFCS and artificial colors and flavors. This is not your grandparent’s soda, in the worst way possible.


Mug Cream Soda

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 180 calories, 47 g carbs, 47 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Sodium Benzoate (Preserves Freshness), Citric Acid, Caramel Color, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor)

Speaking of cream, you’d have to down 12 servings of Reddi-Wip to equal the calorie count of Mug Cream Soda (distributed by Pepsi)—and would still need to eat 12 Hershey’s Kisses on top of that to equal the sugar count. That sounds like an easy way to sip yourself to a fat belly!


A&W Root Beer

best sodas aw root beer

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 170 calories, 47 g carbs, 45 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup and/or Sugar, Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Natural and Artificial Flavors

You gotta love that ingredients list: This American classic might have sugar and HFCS. Throw in two scoops of vanilla ice cream to make a Root Beer float and you have more than two days’ worth of sugar in one chilled mug.


Mountain Dew

best sodas mtn dew

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 170 calories, 46 g carbs, 46 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Concentrated Orange Juice, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor, Sodium Benzoate (Preserves Freshness), Caffeine, Sodium Citrate, Erythorbic Acid (Preserves Freshness), Gum Arabic, Calcium Disodium EDTA (To Protect Flavor), Brominated Vegetable Oil, Yellow 5

There’s flame retardant in your Mountain Dew. That soda with the lime-green hue (and other citrus-flavored bubbly pops) won’t keep your insides fireproof, but it does contain brominated vegetable oil, a patented flame retardant for plastics that have been banned in foods throughout Europe and in Japan. Brominated vegetable oil, or BVO, which acts as an emulsifier in citrus-flavored soda drinks, is found in about 10 percent of sodas sold in the U.S. “After a few extreme soda binges—not too far from what many gamers regularly consume—a few patients have needed medical attention for skin lesions, memory loss, and nerve disorders, all symptoms of overexposure to bromine,” according to an article in Scientific American.


Mountain Dew Code Red

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 170 calories, 46 g carbs, 46 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Orange Juice Concentrate, Citric Acid, Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Sodium Benzoate, Natural Flavor, Caffeine, Sodium Citrate, Gum Arabic, Calcium Disodium EDTA, Red 40, Brominated Vegetable Oil, Yellow 5, Blue 1

As we said, Europe and Japan have already banned the flame retardant brominated vegetable oil (BVO) out of their bubbly beverages. Code Red! Dudes, to truly get a six-pack, don’t do the Dew.


Dr. Brown’s Cream Soda

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 180 calories, 44 g carbs, 44 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Natural And Artificial Flavors, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Citric Acid, Caramel Color

With more calories than a Mountain Dew (though with less artificial colors, thus its better ranking), this Cream would make even Prince blush.


Dr. Brown’s Root Beer

best sodas dr browns root beer

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 170 calories, 42 g carbs, 42 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Natural And Artificial Flavors, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Gum Acacia, Citric Acid, Caffeine Free

You know when you add some Mentos to a two-liter Diet Coke and the whole thing explodes? (Don’t try that at home.) That’s thanks to the Gum Acacia in the candy, which also in this soda—it’s a natural emulsifier. Despite its weird name, is probably this most natural ingredient in this sugar juice.


Surge

best sodas surge

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 172 calories, 46.5 g carbs, 42 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Maltodextrin, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors, Orange Juice Concentrate, Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Potassium Citrate, Caffeine, Calcium Disodium Edta (To Protect Taste), Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Carob Bean Gum, Blue 1

It’s not uncommon for “sodium and potassium benzoate are added to some diet soft drinks and fruit drinks. Unfortunately—especially because Surge contains OJ—”they can form benzene, which is a carcinogen when combined with vitamin C, the ascorbic acid in juice or soda.


Mello-Yello

best sodas melo yello

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 170 calories, 47 g carbs, 47 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Concentrated Orange Juice, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors, Calcium Disodium Edta (To Protect Taste), Potassium Citrate, Caffeine, Yellow 5, Carob Bean Gum

This soda is sweetened with inflammatory HFCS which makes for a shocking sugar count. It’s also colored with Yellow 5, a food dye that’s been linked to hyperactivity in children. Luckily, this soda used to contain the preservative sodium benzoate, a potentially cancer-causing substance but has since been removed.


Sunkist

best sodas sunkist

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 170 calories, 44 g carbs, 43 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Modified Corn Starch, Natural Flavors, Caffeine, Ester Gum, Yellow 6, Red 40

What do you get when you combine carbonated water with High Fructose Corn Syrup and a host of hard-to-pronounce chemicals? This citrus-inspired sip. It gets its alluring orange color from Yellow 5 and Red 40. A Neurotherapeutics journal study linked Yellow 5 and Red 40 to hyperactivity in children.


Barq’s Root Beer

best sodas barqs

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 160 calories, 45 g carbs, 45 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Citric Acid, Caffeine, Artificial, And Natural Flavors

Acacia Barq’s Root Beer falls toward the middle of the pack regarding carbs, sugar and has a slightly less horrifying chemical profile than its competition. It’s better than A&W Root Beer but slightly worse than Mug.


Fanta Orange

best sodas fanta orange

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 160 calories, 45 g carbs, 44 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Natural Flavors, Modified Food Starch, Sodium Polyphosphates, Glycerol Ester Of Rosin, Yellow 6, Red 40

I don’t know about you, but after a long day of hard work and play, I like to sit back and relax and crack open a can of Glycerol Ester Of Rosin. The wood resin is added to many fruit sodas to help the fruit-flavored oils mix better with the water. While it’s not necessarily harmful, let us repeat: you’re drinking oil and water, sold to you by Coke.


Orange Crush

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 160 calories, 43 g carbs, 43 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Natural Flavors, Ester Gum, Yellow 6, Red 40

Orange Crush has the same nutritionals as the next soda, Mug’s Root Beer, but we’re docking it points for the Yellow 6, which, as I’ve said, is crushing stuff.


Mug’s Root Beer

best sodas mugs

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 160 calories, 43 g carbs, 43 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (preserves freshness), Citric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Modified Food Starch, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor), Quillaia Extract

Quillaia extract? The best (and worst) part of researching these sodas in the Eat This, Not That! Food Lab is coming across the weird ingredients soda manufacturers (in this case, Pepsi) add to their concoctions. Quillaia is another tree bark, and it helps your root beer foam up. Be more scared of the sugar here—you’re basically drinking four root beer-flavored Dum Dums mixed with additives.


Wild Cherry Pepsi

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 160 calories, 42 g carbs, 42 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Sugar, Phosphoric Acid, Natural Flavor, Caffeine, Citric Acid

Nothing wild here—just the same ingredients as most sodas, and as much sugar as more than three cups of cherries (without containing any real cherries… SHOCKER)!


Crush Grapefruit

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 160 calories, 43 g carbs, 43 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Tartaric Acid, Citric Acid, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Acacia Gum, Red 40, Blue 1

Our childhood nostalgia is crushed: This kid-favorite brand has no actual grapefruit. On the bright side, it has no BVO.


Mist TWST (formerly Sierra Mist)

mist twist

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 150 calories, 39 g carbs, 39 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Clarified Lemon Juice Concentrate, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor, Potassium Sorbate and Potassium Benzoate (preserves freshness), Calcium Disodium EDTA (protect flavor)

When it was called Sierra Mist, it was sweetened with sugar and stevia. Now, after being rebranded to Mist TWST, this soda is sweetened with high fructose corn syrup with no natural sugar in sight. This tacked on an additional 30 calories and 10 grams of sugar—far from the pre beverage that we used to rank #1 on this list.


Stewart’s Root Beer

best sodas root beer

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 150 calories, 38 g carbs, 38 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Cane Sugar, Caramel Color, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Citric Acid, Quillaia Extract, Gum Acacia, Yucca Extract

If you wouldn’t eat three and a half bowls of Apple Jacks then you should stay away from this root beer. That’s the sugar equivalent of what’s in a 12-ounce can.


Cherry Coca-Cola

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 150 calories, 42 g carbs, 42 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Natural Flavors, Caffeine

As we come near the top ten, you’ll notice the oils and artificial flavors disappearing and see some of the most popular sodas for what they really are: carbonated water, HFCS, some acids and little else. This classic—once made with real cherry juice—is, unfortunately, a variation on a common blend. It’s like finding out your cool dad worked in accounting all along.


Pepsi-Cola

best sodas pepsi

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 150 calories, 41 g carbs, 41 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Sugar, Phosphoric Acid, Caffeine, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor

The perennial #2 in the cola wars carries 5 grams more sugar than a 3 Musketeers bar and 1 gram more carbs. Let that sink in: One of America’s most popular sodas has that much sugar. Instead of drinking this, make a weight loss smoothie!


Pepsi Real Sugar

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 150 calories, 40 g carbs, 40 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Sugar, Caramel Color, Phosphoric, Acid, Caffeine, Natural Flavor

Sugar is the master of disguise. Maltodextrin, brown rice syrup, dextrose, sucrose—it’s got more alter egos than the Avengers. But its most well-known costume, as you know after reading this far, is High Fructose Corn Syrup. Pepsi’s hoping you forget it’s all the same sweet stuff, heavily marketing this new brand formulated with sugar and no HFCS. But in a 2014 review of five studies comparing the effects of sugar and HFCS, there was no difference found in changes in blood glucose levels, lipid levels, or appetite between table sugar consumption and HFCS consumption. In other words, your body can’t tell one from the other—they’re both just sugar.


Pibb Xtra

best sodas

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 140 calories, 39 g carbs, 39 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Sorbate And Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Artificial And Natural Flavors, Caffeine, Monosodium Phosphate, Lactic Acid, Polyethylene Glycol

A “spicy” cherry soda found mostly in the South—or in Coke Freestyle machines—Pibb Xtra contains propylene glycol, a preservative, thickening agent, and stabilizer, also used as antifreeze to de-ice airplanes, as a plasticizer to make polyester resins, and found in electronic cigarettes. The soda ranks well because of its calorie count, but we can’t recommend you drink it!


7Up Cherry

best sodas 7up cherry

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 140 calories, 39 g carbs, 38 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Citric Acid, Filtered Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Natural Flavors, Potassium Benzoate (preservative), Red 40

No caramel color—ranking goes up! Red 40—ranking goes down.


Coca-Cola Classic

best sodas coca cola

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 140 calories, 39 g carbs, 39 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Caramel Color, Phosphoric Acid, Natural Flavors, Caffeine

The company itself is responsible for the HFCS-filled Sprite, Barq’s, Fanta, Dr. Pepper, Fuze Tea, Powerade, Monster energy drinks and more—not to mention the sugary VitaminWater. Yet the company’s flagship drink is less harmful than most of the soda’s on this list. That doesn’t mean you should drink it. It means you shouldn’t drink soda. For a healthier buzz without the preservatives, drink tea.


7Up

best sodas 7up

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 140 calories, 39 g carbs, 38 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Filtered Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Natural Flavors, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor)

The best part of clear sodas: no caramel color. Worst part: They’re still sodas, and otherwise contain the same ingredients as the rest. This classic, now distributed by the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, has lost market share since its 80s heyday but remains a crisp drink that’s not much better than a Coke.


Sprite

best sodas sprite

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 140 calories, 38 g carbs, 38 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors, Sodium Citrate, Sodium Benzoate (To Protect Taste)

Promoted by the coolest athletes, Sprite has the marketing down—and a calorie count slightly lower than the other citric sodas on this list. But we can’t imagine LeBron and friends guzzling a can of carbonated corn syrup before a game.


Canada Dry Ginger Ale

best sodas canada dry

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 140 calories, 36 g carbs, 35 g sugar

INGREDIENTS:*Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative), Natural Flavors, Caramel Color

Our moms used to give this to us when we had a tummy ache. Now as adults, we get a tummy ache looking at it. Blame Canada. Their tagline is “Real Ginger, Real Taste” but the main ingredients here are carbonated water and HSFC, which won’t help you lose your belly! But with lower calories than the rest, it ranks well on this ignominious list.


Dr. Brown’s Cel Ray

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 140 calories, 34 g carbs, 34 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Extract of Celery Seed with other Natural Flavors, Sodium Benzoate (Preservative) and Caramel Color

The healthiest-sounding soda on this list nearly is. But unfortunately for the fans of Jewish delis everywhere, Cel Ray blends actual celery seed extract with HFCS.


Schweppes Ginger Ale

best sodas schwepps

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 120 calories, 33 g carbs, 32 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Sodium Benzoate (preservative), Natural Flavors, Natural Colors

Despite being near the top of this list, this soda has as much HFCS-derived sugar as 10 croissants. At least there are any artificial flavors (nor ginger, unfortunately).


Seagram’s Ginger Ale

best sodas seagrams

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 100 calories, 26 g carbs, 26 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors, Potassium Sorbate (To Protect Taste), Caramel Color, Sodium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Ginger

This is the #2 least-worst soda, with a big caveat: “High fructose corn syrup, which has been shown to increase appetite and, over time, leads to health problems such as obesity and diabetes,” Lisa Moskovitz, R.D., founder of The NY Nutrition Group says. Yeah, yeah, you knew it was bad, but hear us again: HFCS is bad! Still, Seagram’s Ginger Ale has a lower calorie count than most.

And coming in at #1

Coca-Cola Life

coca-cola life

NUTRITION (PER 12 FL OZ): 90 calories, 24 g sugar

INGREDIENTS: Carbonated Water, Cane Sugar, Caramel Color, Natural Flavors, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Caffeine, Stevia Leaf Extract

Although Coke Life is sweetened with stevia, it’s certainly not a “diet” beverage. A can of this still packs 24 grams of sugar and is 90 calories. Still, that’s much less than other traditional colas on the market. And the ingredients are pretty simple, too—sweetened with cane sugar and stevia, there’s no HFCS, which is a bonus. At less than 100 calories a can, this is definitely the best of the regular sodas (although it that still doesn’t make it healthy!)


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Bloglovin’ :Amanda Explains It

Bumble Bizz: Amanda

Poshmark: AmandaLei

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂


Why Too Much Sugar Is Bad for You

When it comes to sugar we are told it’s bad for us but yet here we are consuming more and more sugar. Today I discuss the nasty side of sugar and why it’s time for you to consider going totally sugar-free or the very least cutting back on your sugar intake.

From marinara sauce to peanut butter, added sugar can be found in even the most unexpected products.

Many people rely on quick, processed foods for meals and snacks. Since these products often contain added sugar, it makes up a large proportion of their daily calorie intake.

In the US, added sugars account for up to 17% of the total calorie intake of adults and up to 14% for children (total added sugar intakes).

Dietary guidelines suggest limiting calories from added sugar to less than 10% per day (What Are Added Sugars?).

Experts believe that sugar consumption is a major cause of obesity and many chronic diseases, such as diabetes.


Ways Sugar Can Cause Weight Gain

Too Much Sugar

Rates of obesity are rising worldwide and added sugar, especially from sugar-sweetened beverages, is thought to be one of the main culprits.

Sugar-sweetened drinks like sodas, juices and sweet teas are loaded with fructose, a type of simple sugar.

Consuming fructose increases your hunger and desire for food more than glucose, the main type of sugar found in starchy foods (Differential effects of fructose versus glucose).

Additionally, excessive fructose consumption may cause resistance to leptin, an important hormone that regulates hunger and tells your body to stop eating ( leptin resistance).

In other words, sugary beverages don’t curb your hunger, making it easy to quickly consume a high number of liquid calories. This can lead to weight gain.

Research has consistently shown that people who drink sugary beverages, such as soda and juice, weigh more than people who don’t (Sugar-sweetened beverages and weight gain).

Also, drinking a lot of sugar-sweetened beverages is linked to an increased amount of visceral fat, a kind of deep belly fat associated with conditions like diabetes and heart disease (cardiometabolic risk).

Consuming too much added sugar, especially from sugary beverages, increases your risk of weight gain and can lead to visceral fat accumulation.

May Increase Your Risk of Heart Disease: High-sugar “diets” have been associated with an increased risk of many diseases, including heart disease, the number one cause of death worldwide (Cardiovascular Disease).

Evidence suggests that high-sugar “diets” can lead to obesity, inflammation and high triglyceride, blood sugar, and blood pressure levels — all risk factors for heart disease ( Coronary Heart Disease).

Additionally, consuming too much sugar, especially from sugar-sweetened drinks, has been linked to atherosclerosis, a disease characterized by fatty, artery-clogging deposits ( metabolic syndrome).

A study in over 30,000 people found that those who consumed 17–21% of calories from added sugar had a 38% greater risk of dying from heart disease, compared to those consuming only 8% of calories from added sugar (Added sugar).

Just one 16-ounce (473-ml) can of soda contains 52 grams of sugar, which equates to more than 10% of your daily calorie consumption, based on a 2,000-calorie “diet” (Cocoa Cola).

This means that one sugary drink a day can already put you over the recommended daily limit for added sugar.

Consuming too much-added sugar increases heart disease risk factors such as obesity, high blood pressure, and inflammation. High-sugar “diets” have been linked to an increased risk of dying from heart disease.

Foods with a high glycemic index, such as processed sweets, raise your blood sugar more rapidly than foods with a lower glycemic index.

Sugary foods quickly spike blood sugar and insulin levels, causing increased androgen secretion, oil production, and inflammation, all of which play a role in acne development (acne vulgaris).

Studies have shown that low-glycemic diets are associated with a reduced acne risk, while high-glycemic diets are linked to greater risk (The effect of a high-protein, low glycemic-load diet).

For example, a study in 2,300 teens demonstrated that those who frequently consumed added sugar had a 30% greater risk of developing acne (Acne: prevalence and relationship with dietary habits).

Also, many population studies have shown that rural communities that consume traditional, non-processed foods have almost non-existent rates of acne, compared to more urban, high-income areas (The blemishes of modern society).

These findings coincide with the theory that diets high in processed, sugar-laden foods contribute to the development of acne.

High-sugar diets can increase androgen secretion, oil production, and inflammation, all of which can raise your risk of developing acne.

 Increases Your Risk of Diabetes: The worldwide prevalence of diabetes has more than doubled over the past 30 years (National, regional, and global trends in fasting plasma glucose and diabetes ).

Though there are many reasons for this, there is a clear link between excessive sugar consumption and diabetes risk.

Obesity, which is often caused by consuming too much sugar, is considered the strongest risk factor for diabetes (Risk Factors Contributing to Type 2 Diabetes).

What’s more, prolonged high-sugar consumption drives resistance to insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas that regulates blood sugar levels.

Insulin resistance causes blood sugar levels to rise and strongly increases your risk of diabetes.

A population study comprising over 175 countries found that the risk of developing diabetes grew by 1.1% for every 150 calories of sugar, or about one can of soda, consumed per day (The Relationship of Sugar to Population-Level Diabetes).

Other studies have also shown that people who drink sugar-sweetened beverages, including fruit juice, are more likely to develop diabetes (Intake of Fruit Juice and Incidence of Type 2 DiabetesAssociation between sugar-sweetened beverages and type 2 diabetes).

A high-sugar “diet” may lead to obesity and insulin resistance, both of which are risk factors for diabetes.

First, a “diet” rich in sugary foods and beverages can lead to obesity, which significantly raises your risk of cancer (Obesity as a Major Risk Factor for Cancer).

Furthermore, “diets” high in sugar increase inflammation in your body and may cause insulin resistance, both of which increase cancer risk (The Links Between Insulin Resistance, Diabetes, and Cancer).

A study in over 430,000 people found that added sugar consumption was positively associated with an increased risk of esophageal cancer, pleural cancer, and cancer of the small intestine (Sugars in diet and risk of cancer).

Another study showed that women who consumed sweet buns and cookies more than three times per week were 1.42 times more likely to develop endometrial cancer than women who consumed these foods less than 0.5 times per week (Sucrose, high-sugar foods, and risk of endometrial cancer).

Research on the link between added sugar intake and cancer is ongoing, and more studies are needed to fully understand this complex relationship.

Too much sugar can lead to obesity, insulin resistance, and inflammation, all of which are risk factors for cancer.

Consuming a lot of processed foods, including high-sugar products such as cakes and sugary drinks, has been associated with a higher risk of depression (Sweetened beverages, coffee, and tea and depressionDietary pattern and depressive symptoms).

Researchers believe that blood sugar swings, neurotransmitter dysregulation and inflammation may all be reasons for sugar’s detrimental impact on mental health (Long-term inflammation increases risk).

A study following 8,000 people for 22 years showed that men who consumed 67 grams or more of sugar per day were 23% more likely to develop depression than men who ate less than 40 grams per day (Sugar intake from sweet food and beverages, common mental disorder).

Another study in over 69,000 women demonstrated that those with the highest intakes of added sugars had a significantly greater risk of depression, compared to those with the lowest intakes (High glycemic index diet as a risk factor for depression).

A “diet” rich in added sugar and processed foods may increase depression risk in both men and women.

 

 May Accelerate the Skin Aging Process: Wrinkles are a natural sign of aging. They appear eventually, regardless of your health.

However, poor food choices can worsen wrinkles and speed the skin aging process.

Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are compounds formed by reactions between sugar and protein in your body. They are suspected to play a key role in skin aging (Advanced glycation).

Consuming a “diet” high in refined carbs and sugar leads to the production of AGEs, which may cause your skin to age prematurely (The rapid increase in metabolic diseases).

AGEs damage collagen and elastin, which are proteins that help the skin stretch and keep its youthful appearance.

When collagen and elastin become damaged, the skin loses its firmness and begins to sag.

In one study, women who consumed more carbs, including added sugars, had a more wrinkled appearance than women on a high-protein, lower-carb diet (Dietary nutrient intakes and skin-aging appearance among middle-aged women).

The researchers concluded that a lower intake of carbs was associated with better skin-aging appearance (Dietary nutrient intakes and skin-aging).

Sugary foods can increase the production of AGEs, which can accelerate skin aging and wrinkle formation.

 

 Can Increase Cellular Aging: Telomeres are structures found at the end of chromosomes, which are molecules that hold part or all of your genetic information.

Telomeres act as protective caps, preventing chromosomes from deteriorating or fusing together.

As you grow older, telomeres naturally shorten, which causes cells to age and malfunction (Nutrition and lifestyle in healthy aging).

Although the shortening of telomeres is a normal part of aging, unhealthy lifestyle choices can speed up the process.

Consuming high amounts of sugar has been shown to accelerate telomere shortening, which increases cellular aging (Effects of nutritional components on aging).

A study in 5,309 adults showed that regularly drinking sugar-sweetened beverages was associated with shorter telomere length and premature cellular aging ( Associations Between Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Consumption ).

In fact, each daily 20-ounce (591-ml) serving of sugar-sweetened soda equated to 4.6 additional years of aging, independent of other variables (Soda and Cell Aging).

Eating too much sugar can accelerate the shortening of telomeres, which increases cellular aging.

 

 Drains Your Energy: Foods high in added sugar quickly spike blood sugar and insulin levels, leading to increased energy.

However, this rise in energy levels is fleeting.

Products that are loaded with sugar but lacking in protein, fiber or fat lead to a brief energy boost that’s quickly followed by a sharp drop in blood sugar, often referred to as a crash (A high sugar, low fiber meal leads to higher leptin).

Having constant blood sugar swings can lead to major fluctuations in energy levels (Effects of high sugar and high fiber meals ).

To avoid this energy-draining cycle, choose carb sources that are low in added sugar and rich in fiber.

Pairing carbs with protein or fat is another great way to keep your blood sugar and energy levels stable.

For example, eating an apple along with a small handful of almonds is an excellent snack for prolonged, consistent energy levels.

High-sugar foods can negatively impact your energy levels by causing a spike in blood sugar followed by a crash.

 Can Lead to Fatty Liver: A high intake of fructose has been consistently linked to an increased risk of fatty liver.

Unlike glucose and other types of sugar, which are taken up by many cells throughout the body, fructose is almost exclusively broken down by the liver.

In the liver, fructose is converted into energy or stored as glycogen.

However, the liver can only store so much glycogen before excess amounts are turned into fat.

Large amounts of added sugar in the form of fructose overload your liver, leading to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), a condition characterized by excessive fat buildup in the liver (fatty liver disease).

A study in over 5,900 adults showed that people who drank sugar-sweetened beverages daily had a 56% higher risk of developing NAFLD, compared to people who did not (39).

Eating too much sugar may lead to NAFLD, a condition in which excessive fat builds up in the liver.


Other Health Risks

Aside from the risks listed above, sugar can harm your body in countless other ways.


Research shows that too much added sugar can:

Research on the impact of added sugar on health is ongoing, and new discoveries are constantly being made.

Consuming too much sugar may worsen cognitive decline, increase gout risk, harm your kidneys and cause cavities.


How to Reduce Your Sugar Intake

Excessive added sugar has many negative health effects.

Although consuming small amounts now and then is perfectly healthy, you should try to cut back on sugar whenever possible.

Fortunately, simply focusing on eating whole, unprocessed foods automatically decreases the amount of sugar in your diet.


Here are some tips on how to reduce your intake of added sugars:

  • Swap sodas, energy drinks, juices and sweetened teas for water or unsweetened seltzer.
  • Drink your coffee black or use Stevia for a zero-calorie, natural sweetener.
  • Sweeten plain yogurt with fresh or frozen berries instead of buying flavored, sugar-loaded yogurt.
  • Consume whole fruits instead of sugar-sweetened fruit smoothies.
  • Replace candy with a homemade trail mix of fruit, nuts and a few dark chocolate chips.
  • Use olive oil and vinegar in place of sweet salad dressings like honey mustard.
  • Choose marinades, nut butters, ketchup and marinara sauce with zero added sugars.
  • Look for cereals, granolas and granola bars with under 4 grams of sugar per serving.
  • Swap your morning cereal for a bowl of rolled oats topped with nut butter and fresh berries, or an omelet made with fresh greens.
  • Instead of jelly, slice fresh bananas onto your peanut butter sandwich.
  • Use natural nut butters in place of sweet spreads like Nutella.
  • Avoid alcoholic beverages that are sweetened with soda, juice, honey, sugar or agave.
  • Shop the perimeter of the grocery store, focusing on fresh, whole ingredients.

In addition, keeping a food diary is an excellent way of becoming more aware of the main sources of sugar in your diet.

The best way to limit your added sugar intake is to prepare your own healthy meals at home and avoid buying foods and drinks that are high in added sugar.

Focusing on preparing healthy meals and limiting your intake of foods that contain added sweeteners can help you cut back on the amount of sugar in your “diet”.

Eating too much added sugar can have many negative health effects.

An excess of sweetened foods and beverages can lead to weight gain, blood sugar problems and an increased risk of heart disease, among other dangerous conditions.

For these reasons, added sugar should be kept to a minimum whenever possible, which is easy when you follow a healthy “diet” based on whole foods.

If you need to cut added sugar from your “diet”, try some of the small changes listed above.

Before you know it, your sugar habit will be a thing of the past.


 Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Bloglovin’ :Amanda Explains It

Bumble Bizz: Amanda

Poshmark: AmandaLei

Pinterest: Amanda Explains It

Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂

 


Worst Things About Chocolate

Sorry, but filling your sweetie up with gross additives and tons of nutrient-deficient calories doesn’t sound so sexy to me does it sound sexy to you? Although it’s true that dark chocolate is full of anti-inflammatory antioxidants and has been shown to provide mental and cardiovascular benefits, these bonuses don’t extend to the low-quality candies you mindlessly pick up in a drugstore on your way home from work.

It may appear like a well-intentioned gesture, but your loved one isn’t going to be happy with you once they read these nasty facts about certain Valentine’s Day candies. My vote that you stick to the flowers, spa treatments, and homemade cards instead.

Most of It Is Made With Alkalized, or “Dutch,” Chocolate

cocoa spice

Cocoa powder is naturally acidic, and this can be a major flavor turnoff for many people’s palates. Thus, most American candy manufacturers process their cocoa with alkali, a process known as alkalizing or “Dutch processing” the chocolate. This results in a more mild-tasting, neutral cocoa. There’s just one problem: this technique significantly reduces levels of the main antioxidant that lends its anti-inflammatory properties to chocolate. And when we say significantly, I’m talking a nearly 90 percent decrease in these flavanols, according to a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. So don’t try to justify another piece by referencing chocolate’s known benefits.


Sorry, but Chocolate Is Probably Not an Aphrodisiac

couple in bed sad

Unless you’re eating super dark chocolate, which may help turn you on, don’t rely on that box of wax-coated chocolates to be a libido-booster. Most factory-made chocolates are low in the antioxidants that can increase your energy and sexual desire, and chocolate isn’t the magical aphrodisiac we think it is. In fact, according to a 2006 study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine, when adjusted for age, women who reported high chocolate consumption had similar levels of sexual desire and satisfaction than those who reported low chocolate consumption.


White Chocolate Is Barely Even Chocolate

various chocolates

White chocolate is a little like white, refined flour: they’re both over processed and devoid of nutrients. The only “chocolate” part of white chocolate is cocoa butter (the rest of the treat is milk solids, milk fat, and a sweetener), and even that ingredient typically loses any traces of antioxidant properties during a “deodorizing” step. Without the dark cocoa solids, white chocolate doesn’t contain any antioxidant flavanols or gut-healthy prebiotics, which help reduce inflammation and fight weight gain. It also lacks the ability to stimulate the euphoria-inducing chemicals that real chocolate does, including serotonin.


Chocolate Triggers Loss of Consumption Control

godiva chocolate heart valentines box

Don’t worry, you’re not alone in feeling out of control when gifted a chocolate box. It’s a combination of construction and the nature of chocolate itself. First, the variety of flavors entices you to try each one and eat more than you had planned. Second, the combination of sugar and cocoa in chocolate make it hard to stop yourself from going back for seconds. According to a 2011 Drexel University study, this dynamic duo is extremely addictive, and just tasting chocolate can trigger feelings of euphoria, just like addictive drugs can. As a result, you may feel a loss of control when gifted with a box. Even if a food is considered healthy, portion control is still key.


You May Get a Stomachache

woman holding stomach

You didn’t plan for this to happen, but as we just explained, it’s almost too easy to overeat those creamy chocolates. Whether it’s because they’re bite-size, downright delicious, or we get caught up in the holiday-esque moment of Valentine’s Day, many of us can miss certain satiety cues that we’ve eaten enough. As a result, you could suffer from the post-overindulgence stomach ache of pain, gas, and indigestion.


You Might Experience Acid Reflux if You Eat Too Much

man holding chest in pain

It’s unfortunate but true. Chocolate is one of a group of foods that causes your lower esophageal sphincter (a muscle that normally works to keep the acid down in the stomach) to relax. As a result, it causes the acidic stomach contents to travel back upwards and gives you a burning sensation in your chest, aka heartburn. It’s all thanks to two compounds in chocolate, caffeine, and theobromine, which weaken your lower esophageal sphincter. Something tells me having chest pains wasn’t on your checklist of sexy V-day activities.


You’re Eating More Sugar Than Chocolate

sugar spoon

After looking at all the popular Valentine’s Day candy sold in drug stores, we found that the average serving size of chocolate contains over 21 grams of sugar. Although serving sizes range from one piece to three, when I took a look at nutritional information per gram of candy, most pieces of chocolate were made up of more than 50 percent sugar. In other words, you’re eating more sugar than you are chocolate. That’s not so sweet if you ask us.


High-Sugar Chocolates Can Harm Your Immunity

sugar sick valentines

Since chocolate is so bitter, manufacturers love adding sugar to it. But sometimes, they go a bit overboard. Consider this: If you eat just 10 pieces of Ghirardelli’s Dark & Strawberry squares (three times the recommended serving size, but hey, it could happen), you’ll be consuming just shy of 100 grams of sugar. It sounds extreme, but a 2015 study found that consuming this amount of sugar could drastically decrease the number of white blood cells (your immune system’s first responders) in your body. Even if you don’t eat a whopping 100 grams in a single sitting, just eating the three squares will set you back 29 grams of sugar or 58 percent of your recommended daily intake of added sugars per day. Too much of the sweet stuff can lead to issues that range from dental cavities to insulin resistance and metabolic disease.


You’ll Consume a Lot of Calories

woman eating chocolate bar

Thanks to being high in fat and sugar, chocolate is usually very high in calories. And you know the drill: eat more calories than you burn and you can pack on the pounds. That being said, one day of indulgence isn’t likely to break your clean-eating streak.


You May Be Consuming a Carcinogen

palm fruit oil

Palm oil, a vegetable oil that contains mostly saturated fats but also polyunsaturated fats, comes from the palm fruit. Although a well-researched 2015 review published in the journal World Journal of Cardiology found that palm oil can be consumed as part of a healthy, balanced diet without concern of its limited effects on cholesterol levels, a different conclusion was reached by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA, similar to the U.S.’s FDA). In May 2016 and after reviewing a study published in the world-renowned journal Nature earlier that year, the organization claimed that palm oil “generated more of a potentially carcinogenic contaminant [palmitic acid] than other vegetable oils when refined at temperatures above 200 degrees Celsius.” The EFSA did not recommend consumers to stop eating it—yet—and are now looking into the potential risks.


Or a Banned Substance

chocolate candies

A few V-day heart-shaped boxes (like those from Russel Stover and Elmer) still list partially hydrogenated oil (PHO) among their long list of artificially-manipulated ingredients. In this case, you can see the heart-shaped box as a sign that you should watch your heart health. PHO is a type of man-made trans fat that the FDA has banned from being used in our food beginning in 2018.


You’re Not Eating Quality

hershey chocolate valentines day triple

If your standards are high for your partner, you should at least maintain those high standards for the candy you’re about to gift him or her. Candies like York Peppermint Patty Hearts and Hershey’s XOXO bars contain an ingredient called PGPR in their bite-size candy bars. Instead of using high-quality cocoa butter as a fat and emulsifier, lower-grade candy bars use PGPR (Polyglycerol polyricinoleate): a yellowish, viscous liquid of fatty acids. It’s cheaper to manufacture the candy with this ingredient than to use the real stuff, so the quality gets sacrificed for quantity in this situation. 


You Could Be Eating Insects or Mouse Poop and Hair

mouse eating

Excuse my language, but yes, the FDA actually allows mouse poop in your food—although, they do use a pretty scientific term for it, “mammalian excreta.” According to their guidelines, trace amounts of the brown stuff, up to 10 mg per pound, can be found in cocoa beans. At least you can take solace in knowing there are over 450,000 milligrams in a pound, so that’s a very small fraction. Additionally, you’re only allowed a single rodent hair per 100 grams. That’s comforting—I guess. Want to be grossed out even more? The FDA has a pretty lax upper limit on insect pieces: 60 insect pieces per 100 grams of chocolate. Apparently, an average chocolate bar contains 8 insect parts. Yuck. Part of this gross fact makes sense, though, since cocoa beans are harvested and then fermented on-site outside in large wooden vats.


Your Sugar-Free Chocolate Can Be a Laxative

bathroom stall

Think you’re safe having just one more of those sugar-free chocolates? Think again. Because chocolate is already high in calories thanks to the energy-dense cocoa butter or vegetable oils added to emulsify the cacao solids into a creamy bar, many manufacturers opt to include zero-calorie sweeteners like maltitol. When eaten in excess (which can be likely when you think a food is “healthier” for you since it doesn’t have sugar), this sugar alcohol effectively acts as a laxative and can cause stomach pain, excessive internal gas, and flatulence. That just put a damper on your night.


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

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Exercises For Rainy Days

I don’t know about you but I am the type of person that when It rains I really don’t feel that working out. I rather make myself a cup of tea and watch myself a horror movie while I admire the cloudy gray sky (now you know my favorite type of weather). I know If I want that six pack (ABS) that I need to work out or the very least get a good sweat sesh in.
You can do all of these workouts In 30 minutes or you can add reps or weights and go for a longer time so you get a really good burn in and you will burn those calories or the third option is that you can follow the time listed in the section for that workout. If you want to know some rainy day indoor workouts that you can do right in your living room then please keep on reading.

 Jumping Jacks

Jumping jacks are a great cardio exercise to get the blood and oxygen going. Start with your hands at your side and your feet together. While jumping in the air, spread your arms and legs, then end with them back by your side as you land again.

Jog In Place

No treadmill? No problem! If you are a jogger, or even if not, you can get some good cardio is to jog in place. Jogging in place strengthens the heart, the lungs, and is a great way to burn calories.

Crunches

Crunches work the upper abdominal muscles. They are similar to regular sit-ups, but rather than coming up to a sitting position, only raise up to lift your chest off the floor.

Bicycle

If you can’t bike outside, then bike inside. On the floor with legs in the air, bicycle your legs for 30 minutes. It may not be as fun, but you’re getting the same great exercise.

Shoulder Touch

Don’t forget about your arms. You can help keep your arms toned by holding them out to the side and repeatedly bending your arms at the elbow to touch your shoulders. Repeat 20-25 times.

Push Ups

Push-ups tone your chest, triceps, and shoulders. While on the floor face-down and feet together, push yourself up by bending your elbows, then lower yourself back to the ground.

Squats

If you love want to get a toned butt and legs; you’ll love what squats can do for them. Start in a stand-up position with feet shoulder-width apart. Squat down until you are just over your knees, then stand again.

Lunges

Lunges help strengthen and tone the upper thigh. With feet together, lunge forward into a big step. You can either step back and repeat on other side or lunge on down the hall.

Leg Lifts

Leg lifts tone your quads. Lying on your back with arms to your side, and legs stretched out in front, lift both legs off the floor. Raise them several inches and hold the position 5-10 seconds.

Stepping

If you have steps in your home, turn them into a great butt and leg toning exercise. Using one step, step up and down for 15-30 minutes.

Scissor Kick

For more shapely outer thighs, lie on the floor with your legs in the air. Scissor kick your legs back and forth for 15 minutes.

Windmill

Windmill your waist into shape by standing with your legs apart and bending side to side with arms out-stretched.

Calf Raises

With legs together, lift up onto your toes to stretch and tone your calves. 20-25 calf raises can give them a good burn.

 Dance

You really can get fit while having fun! Try cranking up the music and dancing around the room for a good, cardio exercise. You can burn a lot of calories by dancing for just 30 minutes.

Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

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Most Popular Fruits In America

Ladies and Gentlemen, I can’t believe that I forgot to post yesterday my streak has ended at 9 months (insert sad face). I’ll be honest It did slip my mind because I have been doing home Improvements or a.k.a my days are spent In a Lowe’s or Homedepot and the nights are spent doing those said home Improvements. So with that being said the most popular fruits In America is going up today and saturday, I will do two blog posts to catch up.

Fruits are an important part of the human diet. They contain vitamins and other nutrients that help keep the body healthy. Because of their nutritional benefits, fruit consumption has grown over the years. The consumption of fruits varies in different parts of the world with some fruits being consumed around the world while some being restricted to certain areas because of their limited availability. Some of the fruits that are most consumed in the world are as discussed below.


Most Popular Fruits of the World

Tomatoes

Although tomatoes are considered as a vegetable in culinary communities, by botanical/scientific descriptors of fruits and vegetables, tomatoes are classified as a fruit. By that description, tomatoes hold the title for the world’s most consumed fruit! In fact, tomatoes are considered a must-have in most households around the world. The annual production of tomatoes stands at 170.75 million metric tons. Tomatoes are produced through normal farming, but mostly through irrigation and greenhouses. Tomatoes can be consumed raw or cooked. In addition, several metric tons of tomatoes are processed to form sauces, most of which are used to make pizzas and pasta.


Bananas

Banana is almost everyone’s darling across the world. The annual consumption of bananas stands at 114.13 million metric tons. They are mostly consumed ripe in most parts of the world. However, raw bananas are also cooked in some parts of the world. Bananas are also used to make flavors that are used to bake cakes. They are a preferred fruit because of their availability all year round and their high nutritional value.


Watermelons

Annual consumption of watermelon in the world is at 111 million metric tons. Watermelons are readily available in most parts of the world, even in dry area where most fruits would not thrive. Watermelons grow well in mild conditions and only take a few months to mature. Besides, as cultivating watermelon is less labor intensive than other fruits, farmers prefer it over other crops. The watermelon’s sweetness and nutritional value make it among the most preferred fruits.


Apples

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, they say. Apple is the fourth most consumed fruit in the world with an annual consumption of approximately 84.63 million metric tons. Apples are not produced in most parts of the world. However, the top world’s producers like China, the US, Turkey, and Poland export their surplus production to the countries whose production cannot sustain the consumption demand. Apples are preferred for their nutritional value. They can be consumed raw or cooked, or as apple juice. Apples are also good antioxidants.


Grapefruits

Grapefruits are the fifth most consumed fruit in the world. The annual world’s consumption of grapefruits stands at 83.97 million metric tons. The nutritional value of grapefruit makes it among the topmost consumed fruits. It is rich in vitamin C. Besides nutritional value, grapefruits are also consumed in most parts of the world due to their medicinal properties. Grapefruit can be consumed as a fruit or as a juice.


Top Producers and Exporters of Fruits

Other fruits that are consumed widely around the world include grapes, oranges, mangoes, and pineapples. In 2014, Asia produced over 370 million metric tons of fruits, making it the leading global fruit supplier. Africa, South America, and Europe produced 90 million, 79 million, and 73 million metric tons respectively. Some of the top fruit exporters include Netherlands, Guatemala, South Africa, Spain, Ecuador, Costa Rica, the US, and Mexico.


The Most Popular Fruit in the World

In A Chart

Rank Fruit Produced Million Metric Tons
1 Tomatoes 170.75
2 Bananas 114.13
3 Watermelons 111
4 Apples 84.63
5 Grapefruit 83.97
6 Grapes 74.5
7 Oranges 70.86
8 Mangoes 45.23
9 Plantains 30.67
10 Tangerines 29.87
11 Pears 25.8
12 Pineapples

Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

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Springtime Health

Before I start today’s post I just want to say congratulations to the Superbowl champs New England Patriots!!!!!!!!!!!

Spring Is 24 days away. With the change of season comes the impulse to clean and replace the old with the new. But spring doesn’t just have to be about cleaning and reorganizing – it’s also a great way to start healthy new habits and break the old. Here are a few tips to get a head start in your spring health!

Always speak with your doctor before making any changes to your diet or exercise regimen.  

Here Are Some Ways That You Can Spring Into Health

 

Start an Exercise Routine – The weather is warm and the days are longer which makes it a perfect combination to get active outside. The American Heart Association recommends that individuals do moderate exercise for at least 150 minutes per week, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise.

  1. Revamp Your Diet with Fresh Fruits and Vegetables – Take advantage of the variety of vegetables available during spring. A healthy diet includes adding vegetables and fruit every day. Vegetables like broccoli, green beans, leafy greens, zucchini, cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, and tomatoes are low in calories and high in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Try to eat about 3 to 5 servings every day. Fruit is also a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals. You should try to eat about 2 to 3 servings of fruit each day. It goes without being said that it’s OK to indulge in the occasional ice cream cone. Although, frozen yogurt would be a healthier alternative.
  2. Drink More Water – As the heat kicks into high gear it is harder to stay hydrated and more important to drink more water . Drink plenty of water before going outside and have plenty on-hand to stay hydrated. If you aren’t a fan of water, try one of our recipes for Cucumber Water—it makes a great party beverage for those hot days!
  3. Cut Out the Night Cap – If one of your habits is having a drink before bed, or having a few at dinner, you may want to reconsider your next glass of Merlot. Alcohol not only causes dehydration but is also associated with sleep disorders, high blood pressure and certain types of cancer. It is recommended that women limit themselves to one drink per day, and men up to two alcoholic beverages each day.
  4. Check-In for a Check-Up – You may have chalked up some symptoms and illnesses to the winter blues, but now that it is spring, its time to get back to the doctor for a head-to-toe check up! A periodic well-exam for all ages is not just about good medical care, but it also gives you the opportunity to learn more about beneficial health habits, counseling and community support services as well as an overall view of the best ways to take care of yourself and your family for a lifetime. Your doctor will let you know how often they need to test for high blood pressure, diabetes, other diseases, and cancer screenings.
  5. Protect Your Skin – It’s going to get hot, the sun is shining, and your skin needs protection. Not only do men and women need to regularly moisturize their skin, but also protect it from the harsh rays of the sun. If you’re outside, make sure to use a sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher that protects against UVA and UVB rays. It doesn’t hurt to throw on a pair of sunglasses and a hat as well!
  6. Renew Relationships – It’s time to get out of the house and visit with your friends and family. Research has shown that good, strong relationships benefit your overall health and happiness. Spend the day with people you love, and schedule regular outings to enjoy the great spring weather.


 Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section. If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

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Easy Meal Prep For Men

Real Quick: Today’s post is kinda like a meal prepping guide for men that are beginners to meal prepping. Actually the tips I give with some recipes. Keep an eye out for actual recipes coming soon. And as always with recipes and the ingredients that are used if you are allergic, intolerant or sensitive to any of the ingredients mentioned today or in the recipes coming up you can always switch them out for something you can have just make sure you choose a replacement with similar or as close as possible macros that ensure that you stay on track and that you can have it.

Gentlemen here is the easy meal prep that I promised you. I’m not that familiar with meal prepping for men my area of expertise is more women health. If i missed something or I could improve on something please let me know. I am learning more specific men health, fitness and nutrition and I Here is another “lazy” or easy kinda of post. This time I bring you easy meal prep ideas. If you have been with me for a while now I did a series called the best/worst of something.

I’ve been working to put all the best and worst posts into its own separate post so you can reference when you need it. Before the new year, I wanted to start a new series. I didn’t know what to call It in the beginning and I called it lazy keto vs. strict keto. I didn’t like the word lazy because that Implies that I am calling you lazy and I AM NOT calling anyone lazy. So I changed the name to “easy”  which is still not the final name. 

The Idea behind this series is that I give you the easy way out but still with max benefits. Let’s be honest there is really no “easy” way out but I’m giving you quick meal recipes, quick exercises that take less than 30 minutes a day and I give you exercises that you can do throughout the day that you might be doing already but didn’t know.

If you have any ideas that you want to see in this series you can comment on this post or you can reach me at any of the links plus my email that Is all linked at the bottom of every post.

sorry for the SUPER long Intro keep reading for today’s post!


Sandwiches are the lazy man’s lunch staple, but they’re not exactly nutritious (especially not when you throw a measley slice of American cheese on salami and top it off with white bread). What’s more, they don’t really fill you up, so it’s not uncommon for you to pick your fast food poison and go to town shortly after. So tell us: Why do you even bother going to the gym again?

You may loathe the idea of meal prepping, but packing a lunch for work doesn’t have to be time-consuming—and it doesn’t mean you have to eat the same thing every day. In fact, with less than an hour’s worth of prep this Sunday afternoon (Pro tip: Do it while you’re watching football.), you’ll have everything you need to make five satisfying meals in seconds each morning. Just follow our three-step plan.


Step 1: Grocery Items

Here’s what you’ll need. It seems like a lot, but don’t forget, a box of rice or a bag of frozen veggies will last weeks.

– 1 cup dry rice brown rice
– 1 cup dry whole-wheat penne pasta
– 2 whole-wheat tortillas
– 1 15-oz. can of beans (black, cannelini, or garbanzo)
– 2 oz. almonds (or 1/2 cup)
– Olive oil
– Wine or cider vinegar
-Dijon mustard
– 8 oz. chicken breast
– 8 oz. lean beef, such as sirloin
– 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
– 1 7-oz. container 2% Greek yogurt
– 1 bag pre-washed spinach
– 1 bag frozen mixed vegetables
– 1 large avocado
– 1 small apple\


Step 2: Sunday prep

  1. Whisk together 2 tbsp dijon, 2 tbsp olive oil, and 4 tbsp vinegar. Add some salt and pepper. Use this mixture to coat both your chicken and your steak, in two separate bowls.
  2. Throw both of your meats on the grill until chicken is fully cooked and steak is at desired doneness. If you don’t have a grill, bake the chicken in a pre-heated 350-degree oven for 30-45 minutes and sear the steak in a skillet, over medium-high heat, until cooked.
  3. After both meats have cooled, chop the chicken into bite-sized pieces and slice the steak. Set them aside.
  4. Cook rice and pasta on the stovetop. While they cook, drain and rinse your beans and prepare your chicken salad by mixing 2 tbsp yogurt, 1 tbsp mustard, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Chop the apple into bite-sized pieces. Combine half of your chicken, the apple, and half of your almonds in the yogurt mixture.
  5. Cover chicken salad, along with your rice, pasta, and beans, and store everything in the refrigerator. Take the remaining yogurt and mix 2 tsp each olive oil and vinegar right into the container. Add some salt and pepper and store in the fridge for later in the week.
  6.  Lastly, defrost your frozen veggies. Measure about 3 cups into a microwave-safe bowl, cover with a paper towel and cook on high 5 minutes. Place defrosted veggies alongside the other ingredients in the fridge.

Step 3: Lunch assembly

Give yourself an extra couple of minutes each morning to toss toss together these healthy lunch ideas—and their super-simple instructions


Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed today’s post? If you have any questions about today’s post, any past post or questions, in general, please feel free in reaching out. You can ALWAYS find my email in the “Thank You” section and you can also ALWAYS find all of my social media links in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.If you or someone you may know is looking for one on one coaching or just looking for advice on how to jump-start a healthy lifestyle or how to stay on track during the holidays you can find all of my links which are ALWAYS provided in the “Thank You” section and in the “Where You Can Follow Me” section.


Thank You

I do hope you stick around as I put out different types of content I try to post educational, Informative things that everyone can learn from. I am learning what people like to read and what people don’t. The one thing you will get from me Is honesty. If I post something It’s because I believe In It no matter If It’s a beauty review, recipe post, or just me posting a random post.

If you are a company or a person who would like to reach out so we can work together you can reach me here. Leighlei2009@gmail.com

I just want to say Thank you to all of those who read, view, like, comment, and subscribed to my blog It means the world to me ❤️️

………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

➡️Where you can follow me⬅️

Check me out on Medium:

https://medium.com/@AmandaExplains

Bloglovin’ :Amanda Explains It

Bumble Bizz: Amanda

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Steller: AmandaLei

Instagram: Amanda Explains It

Twitter: Amanda Explains It

Snapchat: amandaleilei (CoffeeandGlutenFree)

NO SERIOUSLY FOLLOW ME 🙂