Frozen coffee drinks can be 'sugar bombs'
ATLANTA - For a lot of coffee drinkers, frozen is the way to go. But, be careful! You may be sipping on a sugar bomb!
ShareCare physician Dr. Darria Long Gillespie says the average frozen coffee drink packs way more sugar than the average soda.
"It' has twice the amount of a can of Coke actually," Long Gillespie says.
So how much sugar is in actually in your favorite frozen coffee?
We checked the online nutritional information for 3 popular small-sized frozen or blended coffee drinks.
At Starbucks, a tall Mocha Frappuccino Blended Coffee has 42-grams of sugars, or about 10 teaspoons of sugars.
At McDonalds, a small McCafe' Iced Caramel Mocha has a little less, at 32 grams of sugar, or 8 teaspoons.
But the Dunkin' Donuts small Frozen Caramel Coffee Coolatta takes the cake with a whopping 71 grams, or about 18 tablespoons of sugar.
So, why could that be a problem?
"Well, for one it's just a very high calorie load," says Dr. Gillespie Long. "That's 15 calories for every teaspoon. So if you now have 20 teaspoons of sugar, that's a very high calorie load."
She says if you switched from a store-bought frozen blended coffee drink to a plain ice coffee with cream and sweetener just twice a week for a year, it could save you 16 pounds of weight gain.
But, if you can't shake your favorite coffee fix? Make it yourself.
"Because most of us, unless you're 8 years old, aren't going to take 20 teaspoons of sugar and put it into your coffee," says Gillespie Long. "You're going to take a much smaller amount and still be pretty happy with the way it tastes."
So, buy a cup of black coffee on ice, and add creamer.
"Use the real stuff, use whole milk, a dash of cream," she says. "It's going to more satisfying and healthier to you than an artificial creamer or low-fat creamer."
Instead of sugar, Gillespie Long says try a sweetener like Stevia or Splenda.
"But try to use a half a pack," she says. "So you get a little bit of sweet, plus some cream and you'll have something that is a lot less calories, a lot lower sugar and still delicious."
So, get your fix -- but fix it yourself, and you won't have to worry about what's really in your drink.