Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Drinking calories

No, not that kind of drinking, though alcohol has a lot of calories too.

One of the first things I did when first losing weight was to cut way back on all liquid calories. I never have been a big fan of diet soda (or "pop," as we say here), but I did like the regular stuff (194 calories for a 16-ounce Coca-Cola).  I used to have it only at the movies and in restaurants, but now I get water at the movies and unsweetened iced tea most of the time. I think it's even better to have a glass of wine or a beer than to drink a bunch of high-fructose corn syrup or toxic fake sweeteners. About the only caloric beverage I drink much anymore is my coffee with a small splash of half and half (20 calories per tablespoon). 

A friend of mine from out of town visited and asked if he should bring anything.  I told him to bring whatever he liked to drink (since I know he's not a big water drinker.)  He brought a 64-ounce bottle of Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice. When he left, there was only a tiny splash left so I dumped it. I checked the calorie info: 110 calories per 8 ounce serving, 8 servings per bottle. In one night he had 800+ calories of juice.  On the same day, he also had two Cokes (one with grenadine (75 calories per ounce) added) and half a bottle of Snapple (110 calories for 8 ounces).  In one day, that would be between 1300 and 1400 calories just from beverages. That's almost as many calories as in a whole 12" pepperoni pizza. And those are just the beverages I saw, so if he had anything to drink in the morning, it would probably be more. I did say something to him about all the calories he drank when he said something about wanting to lose some of the weight he's put on lately, and he said, "But I was thirsty." I decided to drop it.

This friend isn't dumb, but I would guess he has never added it all up.  I think a lot of people do the same. Calories from drinks don't really fill us up in the same way as food calories, so it's easy to ignore them and think they're not a big deal.

I don't drink my calories, I don't eat fast food, and I still haven't lost the weight I want to lose.  So I definitely don't have all the answers.


  1. Good post, Jen! And don't discount your perspectives just because you're not as slim as you want to be. Losing all the weight takes time! You've made great strides in your own health!

  2. I don't drink calories either & I don't think it did much for my weight loss. I mean, I think if I did drink calories it might be harder, but I think those "do this not that and lose xx pounds in a year" are just not true. For most of us those smaller changes (even the 200, 300, 400 calorie ones) are not enough to really move the weight.

  3. Wow, I never realized how it all added up! Thanks for the insight...


"Count your calories, work out when you can, and try to be good to yourself. All the rest is bulls**t." -- Jillian Michaels at BlogHer '07