Drinks That Are Almost As Bad As Soda

Seven Drinks That Are Almost As Bad As Soda

Living a healthy life is just as important as making money and any other important thing in our minds. In today’s blog post we will show you that Soda is not just the only drink that might be bad for your health. Below you will see a list of seven drinks that are almost as bad as soda:

1. Lemonade

You might think it is a better option than soda because it has fruits in it but Lemonade contains mostly sugar water. A powdered lemonade drink mix; the first two ingredients are sugar and fructose (also sugar), plus artificial colors. Another lemonade brand uses high fructose corn syrup.


It is advisable to make it at home to cut down on sugar. Try a recipe for rosemary lemonade (which contains just 10 grams of sugar per cup).

2. Smoothies

Even though they’re packed with fruit, you really can have too much of a good thing. “Fruit is healthy, but too much fruit adds up in calories and sugar can lead to blood sugar spikes and crashes. One popular green bottled smoothie may advertise “no sugar added” but all of the juice and fruit purees add up to 53 grams of sugar per bottle.


It is more preferable to eat your fruit whole or make your smoothies at home where you can control the ingredients, rather than buying a bottle at the store or hitting up a smoothie place. A smoothie can pack a lot of nutrition in a handy container you can run out the door with on busy mornings.

3. Tonic water

Twelve ounces of tonic water adds 124 calories and 32 grams of sugar to your glass (that’s 8 teaspoons). You can compare that to a cola, which isn’t too far off at 182 calories and 44 grams of sugar per 12 ounces. Tonic water is a bit of a misnomer.


Sure, the bubbly drink starts out as carbonated water, but most store-bought varieties add fruit extracts, sugar, and quinine (a bitter alkaloid once used for medicinal purposes) to boost flavor. So when you add four ounces to a standard cocktail, you’ll be sipping on 11 grams of sugar—just as much as if you poured four ounces of Sprite.

4. Sweetened yogurt drinks

Probiotics is such a hot buzzword right now because, as research shows, the beneficial bacteria help keep your gut healthy. So you may be trying to get more in your diet. Enter probiotic yogurt drinks or kefir. They can be a healthy choice, but flavored versions rely on sugar to decrease yogurt’s traditional tang. A small bottle may pack 26 grams of sugar, and contain multiple forms of the sweet stuff, including sugar, fructose, and fruit puree or juice.


It is healthier to go for plain versions since the only sugar they contain is from the milk itself. (A typical 1-cup serving of plain contains around 12 grams.) If that’s not happening, consider skipping non-fat varieties and going for low-fat instead. In one popular brand, making that switch could save you nearly two teaspoons of sugar per serving.

5. Energy drinks

Even though they usually don’t contain a ton of calories, an 8-ounce serving can run you more than 25 grams of sugar—and no, they aren’t healthy just because they’re fortified with B vitamins.


You should skip these entirely not just to save on sugar. Drinking just one Rockstar energy drink can raise healthy people’s blood pressure and norepinephrine (a stress hormone) levels more than a placebo drink, this was revealed in a recent study in the journal JAMA. That may not be good for your heart. If you need a boost of caffeine, opt for a cup of coffee instead.

6. Sweetened iced tea

Syrupy-sweet iced teas contain a wallop of the white stuff, practically canceling out the health benefits. One popular brand has over 30 grams of added sugar in one bottle. Makes it more like dessert.

Unsweetened iced tea is better off whether you are getting a bottled or at a restaurant, since it contains zero added sugar. If plain is too bitter, Schapiro suggests adding 1 teaspoon (or one packet) yourself—it will still be less than a pre-mixed tea. Squeeze a lemon or orange on top for an additional flavor boost.

7. Fruit juice

You might think juice would be healthy since it is made from fruit the problem is while fruit is rich in fiber, juice is not. So even if you opt for 100% fruit juice and avoid drinks with added sugar (like cranberry or grape cocktail), they’re still high in the sweet stuff. For instance, a cup of grape juice contains 36 grams of sugar and a cup of apple has 31 grams—not far off from what you’ll find in a can of lemon-lime soda, which racks up 44 grams.


“I don’t recommend juice ever, even 100% fruit juice,” says Ilyse Schapiro, RD, author of Should I Scoop Out My Bagel? ($11; “You’ll feel much more full from eating the fruit, which has fiber, versus drinking the juice,” she says.

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