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NUTRITION HABIT

Low-Cal Drinks

Do your drinks add value?

WHAT:

This habit is about consciously drinking less high-calorie and more low-calorie beverages to support your health and fitness goals.

WHY:

It’s easy to overconsume calories from drinks because they aren’t very filling and satiating.

This could make weight loss or healthy weight maintenance more difficult, and displace healthier drinks that are better at hydrating you.

Most high-calorie drinks are loaded with sugar, preservatives, caffeine, or alcohol which can be counterproductive to your health and fitness goals.

And of course, some high-calorie drinks can impair your judgement leading to additional unhealthy choices. Alcohol is an easy one to understand with its intoxication effects, but even just a sugary drink may make you more likely to crave other sugary high-calorie foods.

HOW:

Consider drinks on a continuum:

  • Drink MORE zero-calorie drinks like water, naturally flavoured/infused water, plain tea and coffee. These choices hydrate you without adding extra calories.
  • Drink SOME moderate-calorie drinks like vegetable juice, protein shakes, lightly sweetened/lightly milky tea and coffee, coconut water, etc. These can be part of a balanced diet.
  • Drink LESS high-calorie drinks like fruit juice, sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, milkshakes, alcoholic drinks, heavily sweetened tea and coffee, etc. These drinks are often laden with empty calories and can hinder your progress.

There may be exceptions, such as protein shakes and sports recovery drinks – in which case ask yourself “Do my drinks add value”?

TIPS:

✅Design your environment by keeping more zero-calorie or low-calorie drinks on hand and easily accessible.

✅Create a reward system that makes not drinking high-calorie drinks enjoyable. For example, every day that you avoid drinking high-calorie drinks you could put aside some money towards something that you want to buy for yourself like a new pair of running shoes or a nice dinner out.

✅Make it easy by pre-preparing zero-calorie and low-calorie drinks ahead of time. Such as making a batch of fruit-infused water or iced tea on the weekend so that you have something easy and refreshing to drink during your busy Monday.