Starbucks is a household name, and a regular part of daily life for many Americans. Before you go running to order your usual tall non-fat chai latte, you should know a few facts about Starbucks and what you are consuming!
Top 5 Starbucks Drinks to Avoid
While there are going to be good and bad options everywhere you go, Starbucks has a number of high calorie, high sugar options that are going to spoil any diet or healthy eating plan. Some of these drinks are so high in calories, they would qualify as a full meal! You probably heard the buzz about the limited-edition Unicorn Frappuccino, so high in its sugar content that it took the world of social media by storm! It’s not the only drink you should be cautious about! Here are the top 5 offenders:
- White Chocolate Mocha Frappuccino
This chocolaty treat packs a powerful punch, with a grande cup adding up to a whopping 520 calories!
Ingredients: milk, coffee frappuccino syrup, coffee, whipped cream, white chocolate mocha sauce
- Java Chip Frappuccino
At 470 calories for a grande cup, this java jolt doubles as a meal replacement, but without the necessary nutritional value!
Ingredients: milk, coffee frappuccino syrup, whipped cream, mocha sauce, frappuccino chips
- Caramel Coco Cluster Frappuccino
A grande cup of this cup of caramel goodness rings in at 450 calories!
Ingredients: milk, coffee frappuccino syrup, whipped cream, coffee, caramel sauce, mocha sauce
- Double Chocolaty Chip Cream Frappuccino
If you are looking to get your chocolate fix with this drink, expect to add 420 calories to your daily calorie count for a grande cup!
Ingredients: milk, whipped cream, frappuccino syrup, mocha chips, mocha sauce
- Strawberries and Cream Frappuccino
Rounding off the list, a grande cup of this cup packs a 370 calorie punch!
Ingredients: milk, cream frappuccino syrup, strawberry base, whipped cream, classic syrup
Details and Dangers of Common Ingredients
Most of these drinks include ‘syrup’ and ‘sauce’ ingredients. Do you know what that really means?
- Mocha Sauce: corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, sugar, cocoa, potassium sorbate
- Classic Syrup: sugar, water, citric acid, potassium sorbate
Here’s some more information about other common ingredients that you should know:
There are a number of significant health risks associated with consuming too much sugar, including cavities, high blood pressure, weight gain, heart disease and ultimately death! The recommended maximum sugar intake for a day is 6-9 teaspoons, however the famous Unicorn Frappuccino contains twice that!
For more information about the dangers of sugar, here’s a video by Dr. Axe:
Dextrose is very similar to the sugar addiction that was just described. It is made from starchy vegetables, and is turned into monosaccharides. Basically, it is pure energy that your body is unable to use as quickly as you are taking it in, and therefore is turned into fat. Risks of dextrose include diabetes, heart disease, cancer, stroke and Alzheimer’s disease.
High Salt Intakes
The American diet is PACKED with salt, and not enough American’s are familiar with the risks associated with it. When you have excess sodium in your bloodstream, if falls on your kidneys to deal with it. This can cause a significant amount of kidney damage over time. It also puts increased pressure on your circulatory system, which can in turn lead to a heart attack or stroke.
This preservative is included in many the ingredients that Starbucks uses on a regular basis, as it works to stop bacteria, mold, fungi and yeast. It has been reported to cause migraines, which also can result in vomiting, nausea and sensitivity to light. Ingesting potassium sorbate in large quantities can lead to congestion, runny nose, itchy mouth, throat, eyes and skin, and abdominal pain.
The Good News – 5 Starbucks Drinks Under 150 Calories
Not all Starbucks products are sugary and fattening, there are a handful of great options so that you can still get your fix! These 5 drinks are all under 150 calories when you order a tall, and they taste great!
- Caffe Americano (11 calories)
- Caffe Misto with Soy (63 calories)
- Cappuccino (91 calories)
- Teavana Shaken Black Iced Tea (30 calories)
- Teavana Sparkling Berry Sangria Herbal Tea (120 calories)