Vital Signs: Healthier ways to order coffee

By Victoria Giardina
Columnist

Let’s be real here — transitioning from fun in the sun to cramming for exams is the perfect excuse for a caffeine pick-me-up. After all, according to a recent study on Clinical Nutrition, 79 percent of college students drink the popular beverage to stay awake, making coffee seemingly the best solution for late-night study sessions.

Yet, most people don’t realize that the coffee you’ve been craving can be unhealthy if you don’t order it mindfully. Luckily, Registered Dietitian Anne Mauney has healthy hacks to order the coveted beverage the next time you’re jumping for java.

Cut Down on the Syrup

There’s no shame in loving your iced vanilla latte or caramel macchiato, but cutting down on the syrup serving is what Mauney recommends. 

“Ask for one-half or one-fourth of the syrup when ordering a flavored drink — you’ll get the delicious flavor but without quite so much sugar,” she said.

She also recommends having cinnamon instead of sugar for a healthier alternative to sweetener. 

Switch Up Your Choice of Milk

Oftentimes, coffee shops will ask you if you would like room for milk with your cup of coffee, but certain kinds of milk are more nutritous than others. Mauney reccomends whole milk rather than skim or two-percent.

“The extra fat will keep you full for longer,” she said. “It will also slow down and buffer the absorption of any sugar added to the drink so that you will have less of a blood sugar rush and crash.”

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