16 | Special Topic Supplement: Vascular Diseases
lot of calories may come from what you drink.
Some beverages offer nutrient benefits and
others don’t. Understanding the good and
bad points of what you drink is as important
as doing the same for what you eat.
Water provides all the body’s needs
to restore fluids lost through metabolism,
breathing, sweating and urination.
It’s perfect for quenching thirst and
rehydrating your system. It may help
you control the number of calories you eat. Tap water costs
a fraction of a cent per glass. Water should be the beverage
you turn to most of the time. And don’t wait till you’re thirsty —
there are benefits to drinking it all through the day.
TEA AND COFFEE
Drunk plain, they are calorie-free.
Because of this, you can drink them
every day. However, adding cream,
whipped cream and added sugars
(including flavored syrups for coffee,
honey and agave nectar) fills them with unneeded calories,
making these drinks something that should be thought of as
FAT-FREE, SKIM AND
Milk is a good source of calcium,
protein, vitamin D and other
micronutrients, which your body needs.
However, not all milk is the same: Whole
milk and 2 percent milk contain a lot of extra saturated fat, so
be sure to get the skim or 1 percent varieties.
100 PERCENT FRUIT AND
If the label says “100% juice,”
everything in the bottle came from a fruit
or vegetable, but not necessarily the fruit
or vegetable on the label. Juice contains
vitamins and nutrients, but it may not be low in calories. For
example, 4 oz. of 100 percent grape juice has 76 calories —
not exactly low-cal. Consider diluting fruit juice half and half
with water. Tomato and other vegetable juices often contain
a lot of salt. Think of juice as an occasional treat. Be mindful
of calories, sodium and added sugars, and stick to smaller
portions of 6 oz. or less.
REGULAR SODA, DIET SODA
You should avoid regular, full-calorie
soda. It may taste good but it has no
beneficial nutrients. Regular soda has a lot
of added sugars and unnecessary calories,
which causes weight gain and tooth
decay. Diet sodas have no calories, but they don’t have any
nutrients either. And be careful not to think it’s okay to take in
more calories in other areas of your diet because you chose a
diet soda over a full-calorie one.
(lemonade, fruit ‘ades,
energy drinks, sports drinks)
This is another category of drinks to
stay away from. Although some of these
drinks have a few vitamins and minerals
added, they shouldn’t take the place of water or
100% fruit juice. These, too, promote tooth decay.
What’s that you’re drinking?