Starbucks is Why You’re Fat

*** I updated this popular post with new research and FREE Sugar Busting Crash Course Guide!  Includes sugar cleanse! Sign up for the FREE boot camp webinar recording and receive goodies>>>

I will get to the Starbucks part after I rant a bit.

For this week’s blog, I am so inspired to talk about SUGAR because everywhere I go, I am surrounded. I just went to buy a blender (mine broke; not a good time if I can’t make my smoothies!) at Bed Bath and Beyond.  Rows of candy bars, gummy bears, Chuckles  are staring me right in the face. Uh, why at a home goods store do we need candy?

Candy at Bed Bath and Beyond

After getting so pissed, I started to do a little research on refined sugars and high fructose corn syrup (main ingredients in candy). These two are considered by many experts to be the biggest contributors to obesity and poor health in America.

In fact, sugar causes so much inflammation in the blood cells. Sugar is the cause of so many chronic illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

Marion Nestle, professor of nutrition at NYU and blogger at Food Politics says that any food that contains more than 15 grams of sugar per serving is closer to dessert than anything else.

I am horrified after looking up the sugar content of a few common foods.You can even find sugar in ketchup and wine turns to sugar but take a look at the below list:

Sugar Content:

1.  Krispy Kreme glazed donut……………………….. 10 grams

2.  Luna Bar………………………………………………… 11 grams

3. Froot Loops……………………………………………..12 grams

4. Ben & Jerry’s vanilla ice cream……………………. 16 grams

5.  Subway 6 ”  teriyaki chicken sandwich…………..17 grams

6.  Yoplait yogurt………………………………………….27 grams

7. Coke Classic 12 oz. can……………………………….27 grams

8.  Vitamin Water 20 oz………………………………… 33 grams

9.  Oscar Myer Lunchables………………………………36 grams

10. Naked Pomegranate Blueberry Juice …………. 32 grams

11. Kraft Fat-Free French Dressing ……………………………… 42 grams

12.  California Pizza Kitchen Thai Crunch Salad……45 grams

13. Jamba Juice 16 oz…………………………………….49 grams

13. Odwalla Superfood 16 oz. ………………………….50 grams

14. Starbucks caffe vanilla frappuccino grande…..64 grams

So what do you make of all this?  Here are the take-aways:

Foods we see as desserts (doughnuts, ice cream) often have far less sugar than things we consider “healthy” (juice, yogurt)

Froot Loops aren’t really better than doughnuts.

Energy bars are glorified candy.

Sugar is sometimes hidden in things like sandwiches.

Foods marketed to children aren’t much better than soda.

The worst offenders are liquid.

I used to be addicted to Diet Coke which is full of sugar; the artificial kind.

Starbucks is just one reason we have a country that is overweight, unhealthy and most of all not living the lives that we want.

SO what can we do about this sugar thang?

  1. Cook your own food. When you make your meals, you can control the ingredients.  Restaurants add sugar and salt to their meals so that you keep coming back for more.
  2. Get educated on natural sugar substitutes.   I have a handy list  you can download with your Sugar Busting Crash Course Guide.

      3.  Do a cleanse to curb sugar cravings and reset your taste buds.  Sometimes going cold turkey is the way to go.  Join me for the LIVE group for Spring Renewal 10 Day Detox and cut out sugar for good.

Click for details>>> Spring Renewal Detox

Spring Renewal 10 Day Detox

How much sugar is in your favorite foods? Are you as shocked as I am?   Tell me what you think below.

46 Comments on “Starbucks is Why You’re Fat”

  1. Sugar, sugar, everywhere. In our food and in our drink.

    Thanks for helping to bring about more awareness to this health topic. More people need to know about what they’re really eating.

    A great book to read is Anti Cancer by Dr. David Servan-Schreiber. It covers much about the health effects of sugar. Quite informative and useful information. I wrote a post incorporating some of his info a little while back:

    1. I just read your post “Little White Lies” ~ loved it! You are so right on in saying that we need sugar…but since we are not a part of the hunting/gathering society as we once were, the sugar is taking a toll. Thank you so much for your response and I will check out Dr. Servan-Schreiber’s book. Fascinating!

  2. Great points, Lisa. What really gets me fired up is when I go to the lunchroom at my kids’ elementary school and look at what those kids are eating. Fruit roll-ups, juice and juice boxes (the juice is part of the school lunch program!), chocolate milk at about 35 g. sugar for a tiny container, cookies, ice cream, etc. And then the teachers wonder why the kids are so hyper in the classroom. Not to mention their little immune systems constantly being attacked by the sugar. Uggggh! Thanks for bringing this up. Hopefully we can make small changes, one at a time, with awareness and suggestions for healthy alternatives. Have a super day!

    1. Oh yes, I get so pissed when I volunteered for lunch duty! I just couldn’t take it! As a former teacher, I remember really hoping the kids ate an apple or a good whole meal because I knew after recess it was so over. Thanks so much for bringing up the lunchroom mess. I know we are all working on this in our country. Tara, you so ROCK, sister! I know you are making such a difference in your community.

  3. You can add Home Depot to the list. Don’t know that I ever went there looking for M&Ms, Kit Kats, or Gum. Oh wait…. I know. Good chance parents will be there and that’s means kids will be too. When the fit ensues for the kids demanding candy while mommy and daddy are just trying to checkout and get out of the store it’s easier to just give in then endure the embarrassment of a tantrum.

    1. Oh,man, forgot about Home Depot. AND those hot dogs, too! Marketers totally know what they are doing there. When you have to get that plywood and have the tired hungry kids with you, well, shove a piece of candy in their mouths to keep them happy. Good point!

  4. Is the sugar in the fruit drinks refined sugar (for example the Odwalla Superfood)? I would expect that fruit would have a high sugar content, but not as refined white sugar or high fructose corn syrup.

    1. Thanks for your message, Karen. To be honest, brown rice syrup is another form of sugar. Most sugar in fruit drinks is that refined sugar…you just gotta check the labels (ingredients). 🙂

      1. Lis –

        what if it’s 100% juice? We only have juice at dinner, and only one cup. My kids think I’m barbaric because I make their friends drink milk or mainly water when they come for play dates. (They’re horrified that we don’t have juice boxes.)

        1. Yeah, I’m not a fan of juice at all, unless you juice it yourself. You are getting close to no nutritional value in bottled juice in a store. Even if 100% juice. I would check the ingredients to see if HFC or anything was added. If you got the juice at a natural food market, you might be safe. I know, my kids think I’m “mean mommy.” After awhile, though, they know that they will have water for dinner and don’t say anything about it. Don’t worry, we can hang out together as barbarians! I don’t buy the juice boxes either…they get enough at the end of soccer games. 🙂

  5. Good one Lisa. A great way to demonstrate this to people, and perhaps you could do a workshop just on sugar one day, is to bring an actual jar of refined sugar. For every 4 grams of sugar noted on food packages this is equivalent to approximately one teaspoon of sugar. Notice they put grams instead of teaspoons of sugar on there as the average American has no clue how much a gram is…we aren’t metrically inclined! If everyone took the average can of coke at 39g of sugar and got a teaspoon out and spooned out 10 TEASPOONS OF SUGAR in a pile…..would they still allow their kids to drink it?

    Looking at that list in your blog takes on a whole new meaning. As imagery helps teach better than words, perhaps you could follow up post with photos of those products with the actual pile of refined sugar next to each, it is staggering!!

    1. Ha! You know me too well. I teach the sugar blues class at Whole Foods and AACC and totally do the sugar demo. Everyone is so shocked! Esp. moms when I tell them how much sugar is in that Danimals yogurt. Horrifying! Great idea! Thanks for your message, Steve-O.:)

  6. Lisa, I couldn’t agree more about all that sugar stores are selling – right at eye and grab height of small children!
    In Australia, the supermarkets used to have a Lolly Free aisle – they need Lolly or Candy Free stores as a marketing tool, I’m sure many consumers would respond positively.

    1. Hi V! Oh, can’t wait to see you next week. AND totally lovin’ the lolly free aisle…this should be in every store!!! Good marketing, V. I knew you would have something witty to add. xx

  7. Have you seen the ads clarifying the point that hi fructose corn syrup is just sugar?… my response: yeah, so? (The pot is calling the kettle black as the old folks might say.) You are right the most sinister thing about sugar is how it shows up in unexpected places. A while back I spent at least a half hour reading tomato sauce labels trying to find one without added sugar.
    The up side to sugar being everywhere all the time is possibility of a backlash. Also, as in many things there is a balance to be sought. When growing up we never had sweets around all the time, no soda, no packaged sweets, no candy, no daily desserts, no McDonald’s. Yet, on Halloween and Christmas we’d go crazy. We’d swim in sugar. Result: 6 of 6 kids are obese or close to it. Contrast my husband’s family: They grew up on Wonder bread and abundance of processed sweets and meals usually ending in dessert. Result: 4 out of 4 kids looking great and aging well.
    Now, that you mention it, add to your list Macy’s. They sell Godiva chocolate bars at every register.

    1. Evelyn, great to hear from you! MACY’S; I forgot about that place! You are so right about that Godiva calling out to us when we check out. Balance is totally the key. As humans, we naturally crave that sugar, but we have heavily processed the crap out of it and now it is (the refined sugar) one of the leading causes of obesity in our country. All this is individual, too. I like your examples of the contrasts with families. Just goes to show that everything is bio-individual. We must eat according to what works for our bodies. Listen to her.:) Thank you for your message, Evelyn!

  8. Lisa you are so right on this one. I am fired up just reading your blog. I work with kids regularly and I get so frustrated seeing what they eat, how loaded it is with sugar, and how that sugar affects their mood. I have friends that give their kids juice all day as a way to hydrate them. It is such a roller coaster in mood swings for the kids, and yet most of the parents think this is something healthy for the kids to drink. What happened to drinking good old fashioned water? and the best part about water is it’s free!

    1. yay, go WATER! I totally agree with you. My kids only drink water now…they actually ask for it. AND you are right, it is FREE! I am with you, kids eat so much of this processed sugar and it totally screws with their mood, attention, and even with their immune system. Poor things. It is not totally the parents’ fault…we are so confused in this country due to all the false advertisements and propaganda…oh, I can go on and on. Thanks so much for your message, Alicia!

  9. Lisa -Here is the true reason to be REALLY PISSED – if that sugar or corn is not ORGANIC that means all that candy that you are talking about is full of Genetically Modified Ingredients – sugar beets and corn are 2 of the biggest GMO crops!

    1. AMEN, sister! Now I am REALLY pissed! Thanks for bringing that up…that will be a future blog post for sure!

  10. Love this fiesty side of you Lisa! I spent my whole childhood and young adult life being a complete, total, and utter sugar addict. I’d have desert for breakfast and dinner instead of a real meal. Anything to satisfy my sugar craving. I had no clue there was anything really wrong with that and didn’t even realize how much it was affecting other aspects of my life. I was always sluggish, full of anxiety, etc. Going vegan helped me break my sugar addiction, I still like sweets here and there but they are no longer my focus. And I feel SOOOOOOOO much better!! 🙂

    1. Hola, Liz! Yes, I can get a bit fiesty!!! I used to be like you…eating sweets for my meals. AND I can even remember my dad giving me Frosted Flakes and pouring table sugar on top. I can’t even think of that now! I had so many health problems as a result and being vegetarian surely helps me with my cravings. Love your message, lady! AND see you soon! xx

  11. And how about the fact that the manufacturers of HFCS want to now RENAME their product!! Since HFCS has gotten such a bad rap in the press, they want to rename it to “corn sugar” or some other vague name that makes it sound more “natural”. ARGH! This ticks me off so bad. There was an interesting article in the NY Times last fall. Gotta love Michael Pollan, I think his suggested name is the best 🙂

    1. Hi Jennifer! Yes, that corn sugar shit is really making me so mad! I agree with you! Just checked out the link you sent…just LOVE Michael. Great article! It is up to us to stay aware and knowledgeable about what we are eating. Thanks for your comment!

  12. It’s unbelievable isn’t it?! The yogurt thing makes me really mad because EVERYBODY thinks yogurt is healthy, and I see parents give their kids that Go-Gurt crap as a “healthy snack”. Nuts!

    1. Totally insane. I agree with you about the yogurt thing. I get so pissed about how it is marketed as healthy but it is NOT! I used to be guilty of that go-gurt stuff until I got schooled and will never buy that again. Crazy!

  13. Another product — KETCHUP! My 3yo goes through a bottle of ketchup a month. I started to buy Organic ketchup since she was eating so much. I just checked that label. Serving Size is only 1 TBS and it has FOUR GRAMS of sugar. 1 TBS = 3 teaspoons, so that means 1/3 of the ketchup is sugar! ARGHHHH!

    1. Ah, yes, good ole ketchup! I just can’t believe how much sugar is in that condiment. Sigh. Very insane, isn’t it?

  14. Hey Girlfriend! Starbucks drinks CAN be killer–I always ask for half the pumps of syrup in my lattes, although I am doing less and less of those as well.

    I DO love the KIND gluten-free, low-glycemic energy bars they sell though! And, the Naked green machine drinks…;) Wouldn’t it be great to see those options on the school lunch cafeteria menu??

    See ya next week…Can’t wait!


    1. Jean! I KNOW! I actually gave up coffee awhile ago…it made me nuts. Even the decaf. all that processing and then top it off with all the syrups, etc… Kind bars and Naked juices are some better options. We need to all vote with our forks and keep on with this revolution. AND so happy to see you in NYC, love. Less than a week! xo

    1. Thanks, chica! SO grateful for your share…and I just got so mad that I needed to tell you all. See you soon!!!

  15. Short, SWEET, and to the point 😉 great post. I can’t agree with you more Lisa, it blows me away and makes me angry. Those advertising companies are so tricky, making you think you are making a “healthy” choice. Grrr…Well they have news comin to them, huh Lis! Us gals are not far behind with our big “banners” of health and wellness getting ready to TAKE THEM DOOOOWN!!

    Yeah buddy!

    Cheers to a healthier America!

    1. That’s so right, sister!!! We will totally take them down! Step by step as we educate our clients and community, we will reach all across the nation. I can feel it comin’! Thanks for your rockin’ message, my friend. Can’t wait to see you!

  16. Love it Lisa. It’s so true and awful! It makes me angry, but I love to see your passionate side! I try to eat as clean as I can. Oatmeal rather than cereal or something with bread is one example. xo

    1. Thanks, girl. I know that you eat clean…I try to do the same. AND that cereal is a killer. All that puffing and processing, and SUGAR! Great ideas, Stephenie. xo PS. Can’t wait to give you a hug soon!

    1. Oh, Jen, I wanted to get the Breville but they were sold out. I am getting a Vitamix in the next month, but needed a cheaper one until then, so I got the Oyster Classic Beehive. Thanks for asking, Jen!

  17. Thanks for this post, Lisa. Great info. I had NO IDEA about the yogurt. errr. Doesn’t peanut butter have a lot of sugar as well? Did we have a President who declared ketchup a vegetable? haha. I’ll be checking labels this week for sure!

    1. Thanks so much, Mindy! I know…that yogurt can be a tricky one. As for PB, you gotta check the ingredients. Jiff and Skippy (the last time I checked) had HFC. BUT if you get a natural, organic brand, they usually just have peanuts. 🙂

  18. There are 13 copies of the book, AntiCancer, that Dr. Kubert mentions, available through the public library. Since my husband, Steve, is one year out from colon cancer, we take this whole food thing quite seriously and are headed toward being vegans…btw, Steve will be running his first half marathon next Sunday and we celebrate our 30h wedding anniversary the next day. Wahoo!!

    1. Have you read the book yet? That is good to know about the copies…I might check it out at Broadneck Library. How is Steve doing by the way. AND you too?! Miss you! How did the 1/2 marathon go for Steve! He ROCKS!!!!! AND Happy Anniversary!!!! Let me know how your venture to veganism goes…I know lots of groups and if you need info, just call on me. xx

  19. Lisa,

    You always hit it right on the mark. Go to Dr. Oz’s website and watch his show on sugar and watch his demonstration of what sugar turns into once it is in your system. he actually said it causes more damage to your liver than drinking. It is scary. Sugar is everywhere we looked. Even the bookstore has candy at the check out…there is no safe sugar free haven. It is crazy! Now…to change the subject…you must take a trip to Portland. Kevin took me to the best Vegan carts and amazing restaurants. It would be easy to eat healthier and be vegan if we all were surrounded by the food in PDX. We deserve it so what is the problem? The Farmer’s Markets and cheap raw…vegan food made with local sustainable produce is out of this world. There is no excuse why we can’t have the same…we need to start a revolution! Kevin is home so going vegan may work this time…I going to try to find out what is keeping me from success. I want to eat better and feel better. When I was juicing more I started to feel the sugar cravings fading, but the mental cravings were still in my head. I need to find a way to change those messages and eat with a even stronger purpose. Anyway…check out that Dr.Oz clip and think of how we can start a revolution right here in Annapolis to get more veggie friendly meals at our doorstops. Go to PDX and get inspired! Peace! Thanks again for you words and wisdom. Liz

    1. Oh, Liz! I just love getting your comments!! Keep em coming, lady! I so need to go to PDX! I really do…you have me thinking about planning a trip someday soon. We will get this revolution going…absolutely!AND Dr. OZ is correct; sugar can wreck havoc on your adrenals, actually your body as a whole. Crazy. It is everywhere! I forgot about the book stores. That Godiva chocolate waiting for me at the check out. Thanks Liz for dropping by! AND I know when we listen to our bodies, just really listen, we have the answers.:) Keep on, sister!!!! xx

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