Starbucks Keeps Me Fit- Contrary to Popular Belief

I feel like when a person hears ‘Starbucks‘ or ‘Peet’s Coffee‘ or ‘Gloria Jeans‘ they relate it to whip cream, holiday drinks and FAT. But, as my title states, contrary to popular belief, Starbucks is NOT unhealthy. However, I can’t say the same about Gloria Jeans. What I can say is that I am a LOYAL Starbucks costumer, and before you go badgering me about coffee being unhealthy, let me just say a few things. Everyone KNOWS that generally anything in moderation is ok- key word MODERATION. Coffee isn’t BAD for you, if consumed in moderate quantities. I have 1 6oz cup probably every morning and its a great way for me to wake up and get my day started.

This past weekend I went to Gloria Jeans to indulge in some of their coffee-based chiller drinks (when I say indulge I still am healthy!!). I’m not a frequent at Gloria Jeans like I am with Starbucks, so it took me a few minutes to decide what i finally wanted- ok i lied it took me like 10 minutes and the barista boy looked like he wanted to hurt me. I went up to the counter and asked for their special- Caramel Apple Nut Chiller, and before I ordered I asked the barista boy what it’s made out of. He replied “ice-cream” and then I thought to myself What The Hell. I should not come into a COFFEE SHOP and have to encounter unhealthy beverages made with ICE CREAM so I can instantly become morbidly obese. I asked for something else- a Caramel Vanilla Chiller with Skim, he said that’s ALSO made with ice cream. And after asking about 3 more beverages, which with were all either A. made with ICE CREAM or B. made with pre-made mixes, I finally asked the barista boy what’s the healthiest and he said “the fruit chillers”. Ok EW I did not come to a COFFEE SHOP to drink a FRUIT chiller- who does that! No offense to people who would order the fruit chiller, but I want my coffee at a coffee shop its just that simple. Anyways, I ended up ordering the ONLY chilled beverage on the menu that was made with MILK and COFEE- a Skinny Vanilla Caramel Chiller- which was not really that good.

Now, let me tell you why Starbucks helps me stay fit and is AWESOME:

  1. Almost ALL of their coffee-based beverages (except for the Signature Hot Chocolate) are made with fresh espresso and milk. Therefore, you can cater it to your taste: Skim or Soy (vegan!!) That is where you cut most of your calories AND fat.
  2. They have Skinny options: Light Frappicinos and Skinny Lattes in almost every flavor.
  3. They’re consistent. If you go to any Starbucks in NYC and order your usual beverage, it will taste just as good as any other location.
  4. They KNOW what you’re talking about when you place a specific order. If I say i want Skim, no whip, sugar-free syrup, they DONT ask me twice, they KNOW what to do unlike other baristas. (And my drinks can get PRETTY complicated).
  5. Their drink combinations are amazing. Ok where else can you get a better Peppermint Mocha Latte or Passion Iced Tea?!
  6. Quality. I don’t know about you, but I’ve tried MANY coffee shops in the US, Europe and India. Starbucks by far has great quality coffee, teas and for that occasional indulging- whipped cream.

What I order:

My standard drink at Starbucks for MANY years now has been- an Iced Caramel Machiatto with Skim, sugar-free vanilla syrup, less ice and extra caramel. Yes my weakness is caramel, and that is one thing that I will take the extra calories for- ITS JUST THAT GOOD.

Here’s Nutrition Facts for a Tall (any bigger is really unnecessary):

Nutrition Facts Per Serving (12 fl oz)
Calories 140 Calories from Fat 10
Total Fat 1g 2%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol <5mg 2%
Sodium 100mg 4%
Total Carbohydrate 25g 9%
Dietary Fiber 0g 0%
Sugars 23g
Protein 7g
Caffeine 75mg
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie die

This also provides 25% of your Daily Value of CALCIUM

So the next time you’re passing by a Starbucks and you think to yourself “no I shouldn’t”.. just think about how you can make it healthy and Indulge all at the same time :)

I also created my OWN Healthy Mock Starbucks Drink at Home:

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