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

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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 🙂

 


Zero Sugar For Health

Every new year, you’re bombarded with an endless amount of dos and don’ts to eating healthier and becoming the best version of yourself. And typically, there’s one thing that’s always at the top of the naughty list: sugar. But while it’s been demonized for years, it’s actually not quite the monster it’s made out to be. And that brings up the big question: do you really need to quit sugar completely in order to eat healthier?

Because of all the negative headlines, it’s easy to get triggered every time you see the word “sugar.” It’s the ingredient that’s been said to be responsible for the obesity epidemic, and experts have said it’s as addictive as drugs, after all. Here’s the deal, though: In reality, not all sugar is horrible, and thinking so could actually do more harm than good for your health.


All Sugar Isn’t Created Equal

It might come as a surprise, but it’s actually best not to cut sugar completely out of your diet. Even though the world has been trained to see a candy bar and a bowl of strawberries as equally horrible when it comes to their high amounts of sugar, they impact your body in very different ways.

There are two types of sugar: naturally-occurring sugar and added sugar. When we talk about limiting sugar for overall health, we’re really concerned about sugar that’s added. Naturally-occurring sugars—like those found in fruit and even vegetables like sweet potatoes—are important parts of a healthy, balanced “diet” and provide plenty of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients.

In fact, getting your daily intake of naturally-occurring sugar is crucial for all the cells and organs in your body: “Our body needs glucose—a simple sugar—which is the only form of energy it can burn. Glucose comes from carbohydrates found as natural sugars in fruit, dairy, vegetables, and as starches in grains. The key is to eat foods that are natural and unrefined to get the healthy sources of carbohydrates and the ‘sugars’ our body needs.

Sugar in bowl and spoon

But while you want those wholesome sources on your plate, Danchi says added sugar should be limited to no more than 6 teaspoons per day for women and 9 teaspoons for men. That’s not just sugar you’re personally adding into your meals, either: It’s also the sugar that companies sneak into processed foods, like pasta sauces, bread, and salad dressing. So yes, checking nutrition labels is actually super important.

Added sugar is refined, provides zero nutrition, and is inflammatory to the body. Inflammation is the body’s normal response to an injury, virus, or bacteria, and unhealthy dietary ingredients like added sugar can cause a chronic state of inflammation that damages cells and is in the seedbed for diseases like Alzheimer’s, hypertension, cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.

Aside from playing a role in chronic diseases, eating high amounts of added sugar can also cause obesity and dental problems. But there’s a daily allotment for a reason: You don’t need to completely forbid yourself from it in order to stay healthy.


How To Actually Eat Healthier—(Some) Sugar, Included

Humans aren’t perfect, and treating yourself to a little sugar isn’t going to kill you. But cutting back to those smaller portions—and instead, swapping in foods that provide sweetness naturally—certainly helps you improve your health overall.

When you limit added sugars, you’re taking in more of your diet from foods that can provide a benefit to your health. An orange, for example, contains naturally-occurring sugar, fiber, vitamin C, and other nutrients. But you’re not getting those added benefits from table sugar.

Really, the best way you can better your overall health is to simply eat more vegetables and fruit. Yep, the same thing your mom always told you growing up that no kid ever wanted to hear.

A good rule of thumb is to eat a whole, natural, plant-based diet 80 to 90 percent of the time with healthy fats and low amounts of animal fats and refined foods. Avoiding sugary drinks and daily desserts on the day to day—but enjoying the special celebration food in small portions and only on occasion—is a great and workable strategy.

With a sugary treat every so often—aka not at every meal—you’ll keep yourself sane. Because while some sugar can be part of the big bad, it can certainly be part of a healthy diet as well.


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 🙂

 


Vegan Protein Powders

Whether you’re vegan or mostly plant-based, a common misconception is that it can be challenging to get enough protein in your “diet”. Enter: vegan protein powders. Made with brown rice, quinoa, hemp, pea protein, soy, or a blend of plant proteins, the latest vegan powders supply anywhere from 14 to 22 grams of the muscle-building macronutrient per scoop. And if you choose a vegan protein powder blend, they’re more likely to have a more complete amino acid profile.

To compare, the average animal-based protein powder contains 20 to 25 grams of protein per scoop. Even if you’re not vegan, you should still consider making whey for plant protein powders in your “diet”. Plant-based protein powders are packed with fiber, which takes longer for your body to digest so you stay fuller for a longer period of time. And unlike powders made with casein, whey, and eggs, vegan protein powders might be easier to digest for some people. Moreover, a scoop of the plant-based stuff delivers essential nutrients, like magnesium, iron, calcium, and potassium.


How to Find the Right Vegan Protein Powder

Woman with protein shake

To help you pick out the best tub on the shelf, we rounded up the best vegan protein powder brands you can find at the grocery or nearest health foods shop. A good bet is to find one that’s organic because you know it’s also non-GMO.

Since I’m talking about plant protein, you don’t need to worry about synthetic hormones, but you do still want to know that the ingredient (soy, hemp, rice, etc.) wasn’t grown with a bunch of chemical pesticides and fertilizers either.

Some protein powders have a laundry list of ingredients, so go with one that has ingredients you know and understand. If you’re OK with artificial sweeteners or Stevia or monk fruit, that’s fine, but lots of folks want to avoid those. In that case, look for one with less than 10 grams of added sugar per serving.

Bob’s Red Mill Hemp Protein

Bobs red mill hemp protein powder

Protein source: Hemp protein

Protein payoff: 14 g per serving

While the protein count is much lower for hemp seeds than other plant-based sources, they contain 20 amino acids, including all nine of the essential ones. They’re also an excellent source of fiber and heart-loving omega-3 fatty acids. At 14 grams of protein and eight grams of fiber per scoop, Bob’s Red Mill’s powder has a mild flavor that you can easily blend into post-workout smoothies, energy balls, and baked goods.

$29.97 per 2-pack on Amazon


Aloha Plant-Based Protein Powder

Aloha plant based protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein, hemp seed protein, pumpkin seed protein

Protein payoff: 18 g per serving

Certified USDA Organic, non-GMO, and soy-free, Aloha is one of the cleanest vegan protein powders out there. Thanks to the powerful blend of pea protein, hemp seed, and pumpkin seed, you’ll get 18 grams of the muscle building blocks along with six grams of fiber and a generous dose of magnesium and iron. Aloha sweetens its powder with coconut sugar and monk fruit extract as well as adds pink sea salt, vanilla bean, and Madagascar cinnamon for a bold vanilla flavor that goes great with overnight oats and pancakes.

$29.99 on Amazon


Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Plant Protein Powder

Optimum nutrition gold standard plant protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein, brown rice protein, Sacha Inchi protein, quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat, millet, chia

Protein payoff: 24 g per serving

Optimum Nutrition’s plant-based protein powder has one of the highest amounts of protein and provides all nine essential amino acids per serving. It also has four grams of naturally occurring BCAAs, which are branched-chain amino acids that help reduce muscle breakdown post-workout. In addition, each two-scoop serving offers vitamin B12, a generous dose of fiber-rich ancient grains, and beet powder for recovery.

$29.99 on Amazon


Amazing Grass Protein Superfood Protein Powder

Amazing grass protein powder

Protein source: Peanut flour, pea protein, hemp protein, chia, quinoa

Protein payoff: 20 g per serving

If you’re on a quest for efficiency, look no further than Amazing Grass’ protein powder, which combines greens, like spinach, spirulina, broccoli, and wheatgrass with pea protein, hemp protein, chia, and quinoa. It has a fruit blend of acai, banana, goji, sweet potato, pineapple, and raspberry, too. Bake with this protein powder to sneak some greens into your breakfast muffins.

$21.99 on Amazon


Ora Superfood Protein Powder

ora superfood protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein, rice protein, hemp protein, Sacha Inchi, amaranth, sprouted quinoa

Protein payoff: 21 g per serving

In addition to its excellent protein profile, Ora’s superfood protein powder also delivers a variety of anti-inflammatory foods, including blackberries, blueberries, broccoli, kale, and turmeric. It also packs in some prebiotic benefits with Jerusalem artichoke. And with flavors like vanilla, chocolate, and vanilla chai, how could you resist?

$54.99 on The Vitamin Shoppe


Plnt By: (Plant Protein)

Plant protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein isolate, cranberry seed, chia seed, and Sacha Inchi seed

Protein payoff: 19 g per serving

With a complete amino acid profile, you can’t go wrong with Vitamin Shoppe’s Plnt protein powder, which comes in vanilla and chocolate. Free of GMOs, soy, nuts, and artificial preservatives, colors, flavors, or sweeteners, a scoop serves up 5 grams of iron, 40 grams of potassium, and 40 grams of calcium.

$17.99 on The Vitamin Shoppe 


Vega One Organic All-In-One Shake

Vega all in one shake protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein, quinoa sprouts, sunflower seed protein, chia seed powder, pumpkin seed protein, spirulina, Sacha Inchi powder,

Protein payoff: 20 g per serving

Three words: All. In. One. This protein powder gives you 20 grams of plant-based protein plus 50 percent of your daily value of eight different vitamins and minerals. Not to mention, it also packs gut-boosting probiotics and omega-3 fatty acids. Go for the plain, unsweetened variety if you want something simple or satisfy your sweet cravings with chocolate mint, chocolate, French vanilla, coconut almond, mocha, and berry.

$49.99 on Amazon


Garden of Life Plant Protein Powder

garden of life protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein, sprouted brown rice protein, amaranth sprout, buckwheat sprout, millet sprout, buckwheat sprout, garbanzo bean sprout, quinoa sprout, chia seed sprout, lentil sprout, adzuki bean sprout, lentil sprout, flax seed sprout, sunflower seed sprout, pumpkin seed sprout, sesame seed sprout

Protein payoff: 22 g per serving

Made with 13 sprouted proteins and a complete profile of all the essential amino acids, Garden of Life’s raw organic powder will help you meet all of your “get swole” needs. It also contains probiotics to support your digestive health and vitamins A, D, E, and K. From vanilla to chocolate cacao to vanilla spiced chai, these flavors will make your smoothies sing.

$32.89 on Amazon


Espira by AVON Plant Power Protein Powder

Espira by avon plant protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein isolate, artichoke protein, sprouted amaranth powder, sprouted quinoa powder

Protein payoff: 21 g per serving

Espira by Avon’s newly launched non-GMO plant protein powders for women are designed with 4,500 milligrams of BCAAs to help your muscles recover post-workout. It’s also infused with an enzyme blend that includes bromelain, which helps with reducing swelling and muscle soreness from exercise.

$36.94 on Amazon


NOW Foods Organic Plant Protein Powder

now foods organic plant protein

Protein source: Pea protein, brown rice, and quinoa

Protein payoff: 22 g per serving

Following the keto diet and want to keep your carb intake to a minimum? A scoop of NOW Foods organic plant protein powder has just three grams of carbs (and only one gram of net carbs) and zero sugar. Blend some into an avocado smoothie to ensure you’re getting ample amounts of healthy fat to maintain ketosis.

$34.99 on Now-2-U.com


Genuine Health Fermented Vegan Protein

Genuine health fermented vegan protein

Protein source: Fermented pea protein isolate, brown rice protein, hemp seed protein concentrate, quinoa sprouts, alfalfa herb top protein, spirulina, and mung bean sprouts

Protein payoff: 15 g per serving

While some protein powders can cause bloating and digestive issues, the high-quality blend of fermented plant proteins in this powder makes it easy to break down and absorb the nutrients. The best part is it also has all nine essential amino acids that help repair and build muscles.

$29.99 on Amazon


SunWarrior Protein Classic Plus

Sunwarrior plant based protein

Protein source: Pea protein, brown rice, quinoa, chia seed, amaranth

Protein payoff: 18 g per serving

The powerhouse protein blend of pea, brown rice, quinoa, chia seed, and amaranth in this powder will keep you energized to take on your day long after your a.m. sweat session. What’s more, it has a complete amino acid profile, BCAAs, and MCTs to help your body recover after some muscle-burning HIIT.

$36.71 on Amazon


Manitoba Harvest Hemp Yeah! Plant Protein Blend

Manitoba harvest plant protein

Protein source: Hemp and pea protein

Protein payoff: 20 g per serving

From hemp toppers to bites to protein powder, Manitoba Harvest has got us high on hemp—and we don’t mean the psychedelic kind. With two grams of omega-3 and 6 and three grams of fiber per serving, this Hemp Yeah! powder will restore your energy post-run and make you feel more satisfied after sipping on a green smoothie. It blends well with any dish you add it to and is also certified organic, non-GMO, and kosher-friendly. That’s pretty hemptastic!

$26.99 on Amazon


Nutiva Hemp Protein

Nutiva hemp protein

Protein source: Hemp protein

Protein payoff: 15 g per serving

Your zucchini bread, smoothies, oatmeal, and pancakes will instantly get a nutrition upgrade with the addition of this hemp protein powder. In addition to serving up 15 grams of hunger-curbing protein, it also boasts 8 grams of waist-whittling fiber as well as omega-3s, iron, magnesium, and zinc.

$16.99 on Amazon


Moonjuice Mushroom Adaptogenic Protein Powder

Moon juice mushroom protein

Protein source: Brown rice protein

Protein payoff: 20 g per serving

Unlike other protein powders on this list, Moon Juice provides a powerful dose of adaptogens, which are medicinal herbs and mushrooms that help your body manage stress and boost immunity. Cordyceps mushrooms, reishi, and ashwagandha can help improve cognitive function and fight off inflammation from high cortisol levels. Prepare a refreshing latte with a scoop of the powder to give you the mental stamina to take on your day.

$55 on Amazon


Naturade VeganSmart All-In-One Nutritional Shake

Naturade vegan protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein isolate, quinoa protein, chia protein, potato protein, chlorella protein

Protein payoff: 23 g per serving

You don’t get one but two scoops of this flavor-packed protein powder in one serving. Kick-start your day by adding a double of the crave-worthy chocolate to your morning smoothie. You’ll also get six grams of fiber and a wealth of other essential vitamins and nutrients, such as vitamins A, C, D, and K, and manganese, selenium, and zinc.

$26.62 on Amazon


PlantFusion Complete Protein Powder

Plantfusion vegan protein powder

Protein source: Pea protein isolate, artichoke powder, sprouted amaranth powder, sprouted quinoa powder, whole algae protein

Protein payoff: 25 g per serving

Known for selecting high-quality ingredients, PlantFusion emphasizes purity in their products so you know you’re getting the best that’s out there. For example, their vanilla protein powder comes from vanilla beans in Madagascar and their yellow peas were harvested from the hills of northern France. Moreover, lucuma fruit from Peru, monk fruit, and yacon root have been added for a touch of sweetness while avoiding the sugar crash that comes with cane sugar.

$35.59 on Amazon


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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Benefits of Potatoes

Potatoes are a versatile root vegetable and a staple food in many households.

They are an underground tuber that grows on the roots of the Solanum tuberosum plant(Potatoes and human health).

Potatoes are relatively cheap, easy to grow and packed with a variety of nutrients.


Here are 7 health and nutrition benefits of potatoes

 Packed With Nutrients

Roasted Potatoes in Oven Dish

Potatoes are an excellent source of many vitamins and minerals.

One medium baked potato (6.1 ounces or 173 grams), including the skin, provides (Nutrition Facts & Calories):

  • Calories: 161
  • Fat: 0.2 grams
  • Protein: 4.3 grams
  • Carbs: 36.6 grams
  • Fiber: 3.8 grams
  • Vitamin C: 28% of the RDI
  • Vitamin B6: 27% of the RDI
  • Potassium: 26% of the RDI
  • Manganese: 19% of the RDI
  • Magnesium: 12% of the RDI
  • Phosphorus: 12% of the RDI
  • Niacin: 12% of the RDI
  • Folate: 12% of the RDI

The nutritional content of potatoes can vary depending on the variety and how they are prepared. For example, frying potatoes adds more calories and fat than baking them.

It’s also important to note the skin of the potatoes contains a great amount of the vitamins and minerals. Peeling potatoes can significantly reduce their nutritional content (Potatoes and human health)

Potatoes are packed with vitamins and minerals, though the variety and preparation method can affect the nutritional content.


Contain Antioxidants

Potatoes are rich in compounds like flavonoids, carotenoids and phenolic acids (Antioxidants in potato).

These compounds act as antioxidants in the body by neutralizing potentially harmful molecules known as free radicals. When free radicals accumulate, they can increase the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer (Chronic inflammation and oxidative stress).

For example, a test-tube study found that the antioxidants present in potatoes may suppress the growth of liver and colon cancer cells (proliferation of human colon and liver cancer cells).

Studies have also found that colored potatoes like purple potatoes can have three to four times more antioxidants than white potatoes. This makes them potentially more effective at neutralizing free radicals (Antioxidant Contents and Antioxidant Activities of White and Colored Potatoesflavonoids and phenolic acids ).

However, most of this evidence is from test-tube studies. More human-based research is necessary before making any health recommendations.

Potatoes are a good source of antioxidants, which may reduce the risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. However, more human-based research is required before making any recommendations.


Potatoes contain a special type of starch known as resistant starch.

This starch is not broken down and fully absorbed by the body. Instead, it reaches the large intestine where it becomes a source of nutrients for the beneficial bacteria in your gut ( complex carbohydrates in the gut).

Research has linked resistant starch to many health benefits, including reducing insulin resistance, which, in turn, improves blood sugar control.

In an animal study, mice fed resistant starch showed reduced insulin resistance. This means their bodies were more efficient at removing excess sugar from the blood (starch can improve insulin sensitivity ).

A study of people with type 2 diabetes found consuming a meal with resistant starch helped better remove excess blood sugar after a meal (Blood Glucose Regulation).

In another study, ten people were fed 30 grams of resistant starch daily over a four-week period. Scientists found that resistant starch reduced insulin resistance by 33% (Insulin-sensitizing effects of dietary resistant starch).

Interestingly, you can also increase the resistant starch content of potatoes. To do this, store boiled potatoes in the fridge overnight and consume them cold ( cold storage of potatoes lowers postprandial glycaemic).

Potatoes contain resistant starch, which may help reduce insulin resistance. In turn, this can help improve blood sugar control.


May Improve Digestive Health

The resistant starch in potatoes may also improve digestive health.

When resistant starch reaches the large intestine, it becomes food for beneficial gut bacteria. These bacteria digest it and turn it into short-chain fatty acids (human colonic function).

Resistant starch from potatoes is mostly converted into the short-chain fatty acid butyrate — the preferred food source for gut bacteria (human microbiomes to dietary supplementationshort chain fatty acids).

Studies have shown that butyrate can reduce inflammation in the colon, strengthen the colon’s defenses and reduce the risk of colorectal cancer (Potential beneficial effects of butyrate).

Moreover, butyrate may aid patients with inflammatory bowel disorders, such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and diverticulitis (inflammatory bowel diseases).

That said, most of the evidence surrounding butyrate is from test-tube or animal studies. More human-based research is necessary before making recommendations.

Resistant starch in potatoes is a source of nutrition for beneficial gut bacteria. They convert it to the short-chain fatty acid butyrate, which has been linked to reduced inflammation in the colon, improved colon defenses and a lower risk of colorectal cancer.


 Naturally Gluten-Free

The gluten-free “diet” is one of the most popular diets worldwide. It involves eliminating gluten, which is a family of proteins found in grains like spelt, wheat, barley, and rye.

Most people do not experience adverse symptoms from consuming gluten.

However, people with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity can experience severe discomfort when consuming foods that contain gluten. Symptoms include sharp stomach pain, diarrhea, constipation, bloating and skin rashes, just to name a few (Celiac diseaseDiagnosis of gluten related disorders).

If you follow a gluten-free “diet”, then you should consider adding potatoes to your “diet”. They are naturally gluten-free, which means they won’t trigger uncomfortable symptoms.

While potatoes are gluten-free, many common potato recipes are not. Some potato dishes that contain gluten include certain au gratin recipes and potato bread.

If you have celiac disease or a non-celiac gluten sensitivity, be sure to read the full list of ingredients before eating a potato dish.

Potatoes are naturally gluten-free, which makes them an excellent food choice for people with celiac disease or a non-celiac gluten sensitivity.

 Incredibly Filling

Aside from being nutritious, potatoes are also incredibly filling.

In one study, 11 people were fed 38 common foods and asked to rate foods based on how filling they were. Potatoes received the highest fullness rating of them all.

In fact, potatoes were rated as being seven times more filling than croissants, which were ranked as the least filling food item (A satiety index of common foods).

Foods that are filling may help you regulate or lose weight, as they curb hunger pains (Protein, weight management, and satiety).

Some evidence shows that a certain potato protein, known as potato proteinase inhibitor 2 (PI2), can curb appetite. This protein appears to enhance the release of cholecystokinin (CCK), a hormone that promotes feelings of fullness (Health-beneficial properties of potatos).

Studies have shown that potatoes are among the most filling foods. They may increase the levels of fullness hormones, such as cholecystokinin (CCK).


 Extremely Versatile

Not only are potatoes healthy, but they are also delicious and versatile.

Potatoes can be prepared in many ways, including boiled, baked and steamed. However, frying potatoes may dramatically increase their calorie content if you use a lot of oil.

Instead, try slicing potatoes and then roasting them in the oven with a light drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a sprinkle of rosemary.

Make sure not to remove the skin of the potatoes, as most of the nutrients are located there. This will ensure you receive the maximum amount of nutrients from the potato.

Potatoes are delicious, versatile and easy to add to your “diet”. Try boiling, baking or steaming them and consuming them with the skin intact.

Potatoes are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which make them very healthy.

Studies have linked potatoes and their nutrients to a variety of impressive health benefits, including improved blood sugar control, reduced heart disease risk and higher immunity. They may also improve digestive health and combat signs of aging.

Potatoes are also quite filling, which means they may help you lose weight by curbing hunger pains and cravings.

All in all, potatoes are a great addition to your “diet” in moderation. They are also naturally gluten-free, which means they can be enjoyed by almost everyone.


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 🙂

 


Is Cassava Flour Bad For You?

Cassava is a root vegetable widely consumed in developing countries. It provides some important nutrients and resistant starch, which may have health benefits.

On the other hand, cassava can have dangerous effects, especially if it is eaten raw and in large amounts.

This article will explore the unique properties of cassava to determine if it’s a healthy and safe food for you to include in your diet.


What Is Cassava?

Cassava is a nutty-flavored, starchy root vegetable or tuber. Native to South America, it’s a major source of calories and carbs for people in developing countries.

It is grown in tropical regions of the world because of its ability to withstand difficult growing conditions — in fact, it’s one of the most drought-tolerant crops (1).

In the United States, cassava is often called yuca and may also be referred to as manioc or Brazilian arrowroot.

The most commonly consumed part of cassava is the root, which is very versatile. It can be eaten whole, grated or ground into flour to make bread and crackers.

Additionally, cassava root is well known as the raw material that’s used to produce tapioca and garri, a product similar to tapioca.

Individuals with food allergies often benefit from using cassava root in cooking and baking because it is gluten-free, grain-free and nut-free.

One important note is that cassava root must be cooked before it is eaten. Raw cassava can be poisonous, which will be discussed in a later chapter.

Cassava is a versatile root vegetable that is consumed in several parts of the world. It must be cooked before it is eaten.


Contains a Few Key Nutrients

A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving of boiled cassava root contains 112 calories. 98% of these are from carbs and the rest are from a small amount of protein and fat.

This serving also provides fiber, as well as a few vitamins and minerals.

The following nutrients are found in 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of boiled cassava:

  • Calories: 112
  • Carbs: 27 grams
  • Fiber: 1 gram
  • Thiamine: 20% of the RDI
  • Phosphorus: 5% of the RDI
  • Calcium: 2% of the RDI
  • Riboflavin: 2% of the RDI

Boiled cassava root also contains small amounts of iron, vitamin C and niacin.

Overall, the nutrition profile of cassava is unremarkable. While it does provide some vitamins and minerals, the amounts are minimal.

There are many other root vegetables you can eat that will provide significantly more nutrients — beets and sweet potatoes, to name two.

Cassava is a significant source of carbs and also provides a small amount of fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

This is because many of the vitamins and minerals are destroyed by processing, as well as most of the fiber and resistant starch.

Therefore, the more popular, processed forms of cassava — such as tapioca and garri — have very limited nutritional value.

For example, 1 ounce (28 grams) of tapioca pearls provides nothing but calories and a small amount of a few minerals.

Boiling cassava root is one cooking method that has been shown to retain most nutrients, with the exception of vitamin C, which is sensitive to heat and easily leaches into the water.

While cassava contains several nutrients, processing methods significantly lower its nutritional value by destroying vitamins and minerals.


It’s High in Calories

Cassava contains 112 calories per 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving, which is quite high compared to other root vegetables (Cassava for Use as a Staple Food).

For example, the same serving of sweet potatoes provides 76 calories, and the same amount of beets provides only 44.

This is what makes cassava such an important crop for developing countries since it is a significant source of calories (Nutritional Value of Cassava).

However, its high-calorie count may do more harm than good for the general population.

Consuming high-calorie foods on a regular basis is associated with weight gain and obesity, so consume cassava in moderation and in reasonable portions (Dietary energy density). An appropriate serving size is about 1/3–1/2 cup (73–113 grams).

Cassava contains a significant number of calories, so consume it in moderation and in appropriate portion sizes.

High in Resistant Starch

Cassava is high in resistant starch, a type of starch that bypasses digestion and has properties similar to soluble fiber.

Consuming foods that are high in resistant starch may have several benefits for overall health.

First of all, resistant starch feeds the beneficial bacteria in your gut, which may help reduce inflammation and promote digestive health (Resistant Starch: Promise for Improving Human HealthRole of resistant starch ).

Resistant starch has also been studied for its ability to contribute to better metabolic health and reduce the risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.

This is due to its potential to improve blood sugar control, in addition to its role in promoting fullness and reducing appetite (Acute ingestion of resistant starchimproving human healthmetabolic effects and potential health benefitsStarches, Sugars and Obesity).

The benefits of resistant starch are promising, but it is important to note that many processing methods may lower cassava’s resistant starch content.

Products made from cassava, such as flour, tend to be lower in resistant starch than cassava root that has been cooked and then cooled in its whole form (The resistant starchResistant starch in cassava products).

Cassava in its whole form is high in resistant starch, which is known for its role in preventing certain metabolic conditions and promoting gut health.

Contains Antinutrients

One of cassava’s major downfalls is its content of antinutrients.

Antinutrients are plant compounds that may interfere with digestion and inhibit the absorption of vitamins and minerals in the body.

These aren’t a concern for most healthy people, but their effects are important to keep in mind.

They are more likely to impact populations at risk of malnutrition. Interestingly, this includes populations that rely on cassava as a staple food.


Here are the most important antinutrients found in cassava:

The effects of antinutrients are more prominent when they are consumed frequently and as part of a nutritionally inadequate diet.

As long as you only consume cassava on occasion, the antinutrients shouldn’t be a major cause for concern.

In fact, under some circumstances, antinutrients such as tannins and saponins may actually have beneficial health effects (ProanthocyanidinsSaponins as cytotoxic agentsEffects of Saponins on Lipid Metabolism).

The antinutrients in cassava may interfere with the absorption of some vitamins and minerals and may cause digestive distress. This is mainly a concern for populations that rely on cassava as a staple food.


May Have Dangerous Effects in Some Circumstances

Cassava may be dangerous if consumed raw, in large amounts or when it is prepared improperly.

This is because raw cassava contains chemicals called cyanogenic glycosides, which can release cyanide in the body when consumed.

When eaten frequently, these increase the risk of cyanide poisoning, which may impair thyroid and nerve function. It is associated with paralysis and organ damage and can be fatal (The toxic effects of cassava).

Those who have an overall poor nutrition status and low protein intake are more likely to experience these effects since protein helps rid the body of cyanide (Chronic poisoning by hydrogen cyanide).

This is why cyanide poisoning from cassava is a greater concern for those who live in developing countries. Many people in these countries suffer from protein deficiencies and depend on cassava as a major source of calories (Chronic poisoning by hydrogen cyanide in cassava).

What’s more, in some areas of the world, cassava has been shown to absorb harmful chemicals from the soil, such as arsenic and cadmium. This may increase the risk of cancer in those who depend on cassava as a staple food (Cancer and non-cancer health risk from eating cassava).

Frequent consumption of cassava is associated with cyanide poisoning, especially if it is consumed raw and prepared improperly.


How to Make Cassava Safer for Consumption

Cassava is generally safe when it is prepared properly and eaten occasionally in moderate amounts. A reasonable serving size is about 1/3–1/2 cup.

Here are some ways you can make cassava safer for consumption cassava,Cassava Processing):

  • Peel it: The peel of cassava root contains most of the cyanide-producing compounds.
  • Soak it: Soaking cassava by submerging it in water for 48–60 hours before it is cooked and eaten may reduce the amount of harmful chemicals it contains.
  • Cook it: Since the harmful chemicals are found in raw cassava, it’s essential to cook it thoroughly — by boiling, roasting or baking, for example.
  • Chronic poisoning by hydrogen cyanide Chronic poisoning by hydrogen cyanidePair it with protein: Eating some protein along with cassava may be beneficial since protein helps rid the body of toxic cyanide
  • Maintain a balanced diet: You can prevent adverse effects from cassava by including a variety of foods in your diet and not relying on it as your sole source of nutrition.

It’s important to note that products made from cassava root, such as cassava flour and tapioca, contain extremely little to no cyanide-inducing compounds and are safe for human consumption.

You can make cassava safer for consumption with several strategies, including using certain preparation methods and consuming it in reasonable portions.


How to Use Cassava

There are many ways you can incorporate cassava into your diet.

You can prepare several snacks and dishes with the root on its own. It is commonly sliced and then baked or roasted, similar to the way you would prepare a potato.

Additionally, cassava root can be mashed or mixed in with stir-fries, omelets, and soups. It’s also sometimes ground into flour and used in bread and crackers.

You can also enjoy it in the form of tapioca, which is a starch extracted from the cassava root through a process of washing and pulping.

Tapioca is commonly used as a thickener for puddings, pies, and soups.

Cassava is typically used in the same way that you would use potatoes and makes an excellent addition to just about any dish. It can also be ground into flour or enjoyed in the form of tapioca.

Cassava contains some healthful properties, but its negative effects appear to outweigh the benefits.

Not only is it high in calories and antinutrients — it can cause cyanide poisoning when prepared improperly or consumed in large amounts.

While this is mostly a concern for those who rely on cassava as a staple food, it is still important to keep in mind.

Additionally, cassava-based products like tapioca have been processed enough to remove toxic chemicals and are not dangerous to consume.

Overall, cassava is not a food that needs to be a regular part of your diet. If you do eat it, prepare it properly and eat it in reasonable portions.


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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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 ❤️️

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

➡️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 🙂