Weight Loss Support - Over consumption of coffee

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01-20-2014, 02:25 PM
I've been extremely frustrated over the past few months. I had been losing pretty steadily until about 2.5 months ago when I had an allergic reaction to something and was sick for a few days. I had to take a couple of days off of work and I ended up overeating and it's been an uphill struggle since then.

I felt like I was doing pretty good exercising and eating right, but my weight was not moving. I haven't given up, I've just been perplexed as to what I was doing wrong. I suddenly had a light bulb moment. During my illness I was so tired and started drinking quite a bit of coffee. I loved the warmth, the sweetness, the flavor, and the energy it gave me. Flash forward these 2.5 months later and it dawns on me just how many extra calories I'm consuming with my half & half, flavored creamers, and sweeteners! I prefer sugar free due to my blood sugar issues, but sugar free certainly doesn't mean calorie free! I think on average I was consuming at least 200-400 extra calories! For ex, my creamer has 30 calories....and it's only a Tbsp for a serving...let me say I NEVER just use 1 Tbsp! Factor in the 3 or 4 big mugs of steaming coffee I was consuming and we are talking an extra meal!

It's amazing that I overlooked something so simple. I like to consume my calorie goal each day so these additional calories were pretty much setting me up to "maintain" as oppose to losing.

Looking forward to seeing how much this helps!!!

01-20-2014, 02:37 PM
Nice detective work! I sometimes use heavy cream in my coffee but that usually fills me up enough (and has enough calories) to serve as actual breakfast and then I'm fine until lunch. But if I just added it in on top of everything I can definitely see that it would stall weight loss!

01-20-2014, 02:55 PM
I use a sugar free, fat free instant coffee mix at home with splenda and some half n half....I don't drink much coffee but I definitely could see how a lot of that could prevent me losing weight

during the day I also get one tall skinny mocha with sugar free flavoring at the espresso stand on my way to work....that's all the coffee I drink....one mocha every day and occasionally the instant coffee at home on weekends

01-20-2014, 03:31 PM
I like a few cups of coffee every day (at least 2). Now that I'm watching my calories this is what I do:

first cup: 1 tsp. sugar and a splash of whatever milk is in the house (usually comes to ~30 calories)

second and third cups: black

I cut artificial sweeteners out of my diet (not that I was consuming many before) so I can't switch to a non-sugar sweetener. So I let myself have that first creamy, sweet cup and then after that I'm just sipping it straight for a few hours for the caffeine.

In the afternoon, I switch to unsweetened hot or iced tea.

01-20-2014, 03:43 PM
VealCalf, you are a lady after my own heart. Irecently came to the same conclusion regarding my own stalled/miniscule weight loss and it relationship to my coffee consumption. I love coffee and have at least what amounts to 2 big cups daily. Like you, I like it all "dolled" up. However, I also think that this just one big reason the scale hasn't budged significantly. It's amazing how those calories add up :o I like Underanalysis' idea and if it turns out that black coffee isn't my thing, I do enjoy teas of many varities so that's a reasonable option as well.

Thanks for posting this. I bet it opens up some eyes!

Larry H
01-20-2014, 05:45 PM
Wow, "Over Consumption of Coffee" As a retired US Navy Chief Petty Officer that statement seemed like an oxymoron to me. :D Then I read your post and discovered that it was about excess sugar and cream calories when you drink a lot of coffee.

I retired from the Navy in 1983 and at my retirement physical the doctor asked me "Chief, how much coffee do you drink"? I gave him an honest answer when I replied 35 to 40 cups a day. I still remember the look on his face it was priceless.

Now, 34 years later I drink about 12 cups of caffeinated coffee each day. This does not affect my diet as I have learned to enjoy it black. No cream and no sweeteners of any kind.

Twelve cups of black coffee totals about 24 calories. :coffee:

01-20-2014, 05:56 PM
"Chief, how much coffee do you drink"? I gave him an honest answer when I replied 35 to 40 cups a day. I still remember the look on his face it was priceless.

I think I just made the same face as your doctor did back in the day lol! ;)

I drink one cup a day now because I'm a cream/sugar lover in my coffee. Though I'm going dairy-free, so I'm hoping the soy creamer stands up to the cow version! I make sure I allow for the 110 calories every day.

01-20-2014, 05:58 PM
Yeah, I got stung with the coffee as well. I take mine with a lot of non-fat milk. That's 90 calories a pop. I've taken to coffee with a splash of milk rather than lattes.

Arctic Mama
01-20-2014, 07:43 PM
I do heavy cream in my coffee but I always measure and log it. There's no such thing as free when it comes to a non-clear beverage ;)

Fortunately I only drink two per day, one with chia seed, so it's about 210 calories total for me. I have to watch my cream, as it is easy to overeat and my body doesn't like too much dairy. If you can comfortably cut it out, go for it.

01-20-2014, 08:13 PM
After my daughter was born in 2011 and I was losing weight, I switched my coffee to black with two Stevia packets... I don't miss the calories from creamer! Though once in a while (maybe once a week) I treat myself to a tall mocha light frappaccino at Starbucks for 110 calories.

01-20-2014, 08:48 PM
I really really really like coffee. A lot. :)

I've found that if the coffee is good, I can drink it black; if it's not-as-great, I tend to choke it with sugar/cream/cinnamon galore. This kind of escalated to the point that I now roast my own beans once a week, and grind fresh by hand every morning for my cuppa. It's actually quite a lovely, meditative ritual to start the day with.

If you have the chance to explore any local roasteries and the joys of fresh coffee, you might even find one you like well enough to drink without the 'extras'.

Now, 34 years later I drink about 12 cups of caffeinated coffee each day. This does not affect my diet as I have learned to enjoy it black. No cream and no sweeteners of any kind.

Twelve cups of black coffee totals about 24 calories. :coffee:

Wow. That is impressive. After 12oz, my morning is pretty much vibrating; I'd be scared to see myself on 12 CUPS! ;)

01-20-2014, 09:28 PM
Same issue with the coffee here. I have 3-4 cups a day and used to dump tons of heavy cream in. Now I measure my SF creamer (annoying but necessary) and use only 1 packet of artificial sweetener. And I count it. Count it all.

01-20-2014, 09:44 PM
I never drank coffee in my life until I had lost most of my weight and then tried it and became addicted to how it heated me up since I am cold all the time!

I drink about 2-3 cups a day of flavored but have never tried cream. Fortunately since I never discovered it I didn't have to give it up!!!


01-20-2014, 09:59 PM
Now, 34 years later I drink about 12 cups of caffeinated coffee each day. This does not affect my diet as I have learned to enjoy it black. No cream and no sweeteners of any kind.

Twelve cups of black coffee totals about 24 calories. :coffee:

A kindred soul!

I never drank QUITE as much coffee as you, but I drink about 8 cups of caffeinated coffee a day. I started drinking it black at the age of 18, so I really don't even remember what coffee with sugar and cream tastes like. All I know is that I absolutely LOVE my black coffee, especially that first cup of the day!

I know most people who drink coffee with sweetener and/or cream may find this hard to believe, but you can develop a tolerance, which moves to a like, and then eventually a LOVE of black coffee. I went on my first DIE-T at age 18 as a freshman in college and was looking for any way possible to reduce calories. Someone (I don't remember who) told me that if I drank my coffee black for 30 days, even if I found it awful, that after that 30 day period I could no longer drink it with sugar or cream. So of course I didn't believe them and set out to prove them wrong. I choked down coffee for those 30 days, first about a 1/2 cup and progressing to about 2 cups by the end of 30 days. I still hated the taste, so at day 31 I put in my usual sugar and cream.

It was UNDRINKABLE. I threw it down the sink.

Then I was stuck in limbo; couldn't drink it with sugar and cream, didn't like it black. But I kept choking down that coffee. Eventually I developed a taste for it, and as I continued to drink it black I finally found myself really liking it...and then eventually loving it.

If you really want to save yourself a lot of calories you might give it a try. But fair warning - once you really enjoy black coffee, you'll probably drink as much of it as I do - or even as much as Larry H did!

If you've ever had coffee with chicory (like they serve in the French Quarter in New Orleans) you know how strong that coffee is.

Yes, I drink it black too.

01-20-2014, 10:19 PM
I now measure my creamer, for a lot of years I only used half and half, I do like it not as sweet. I've actually gotten to just one tablespoon at 35 calories a tbsp it sure can add up.

I'm sensitive to caffeine, makes me sad some days, I love the flavor of coffee but can only drink a couple cups a day. I've never developed a taste for decaf, not sure why, it just tastes different to me.

Best of luck to you :sunny:

01-21-2014, 07:48 AM
Thanks for sharing your stories and tips everyone!

This AM I had two cups of coffee. I limited each cup to 1 tsp of hazelnut sugar free powdered creamer, a tsp of fat free half and half, and 2 packets of Splenda. Let me just say...measuring powdered creamer is insane! LOL there is only the pour spout and it comes flying out! I suppose I could pop off the lid but I'm notorious for losing lids! The amazing thing, I could taste the hazelnut, the sweetness, and detect the creaminess even with using much less. My goal is to keep the servings under the TBSP sized serving, this way if I go for the third cup I'm still controlling the calories. I also had a very sobering moment when I looked at the side of my hazelnut creamer and realized an entire bottle is like 58 servings...I could KILL a bottle in a week or two! 58 servings times 30 calories = 1740 calories! I don't want to give up these enjoyments in life but it really makes me pause to think how many extra calories this adds up to! This also doesn't factor in when I also add my half and half (yep I enjoy BOTH in my coffee!) which is another 20 calories for 2 TBSP...doesn't sound like a lot but again collectively it adds up!

I think in a nutshell I just have to remind myself that the entire point of changing my eating habits is that I can have things I crave, it's just learning to eat/drink them in moderation.

I'm also going to look into trying some black coffee as some of you suggested. I happen to agree, when you get a really good cup of coffee you can really enjoy it with no additives :) I happen to love tea too, so I think when I'm simply craving warmth and maybe a touch of sweetness I'll go that route.

I'm hoping I see a bit of weight loss after figuring this out. It's been frustrating to be at a standstill for so long :( I try not to obsess over that darn scale but it is frustrating when you feel you're trying so hard and the numbers aren't moving. I won't be defined by a number but I also realize I'm not feeling as healthy as I could be at the moment, and want to change that! Cheers to all of you!

01-23-2014, 01:51 PM
=P I neeeed the caffeine, but have started using roughly a teaspoon. 35 calories for that boost? I'll take it. But I have started drinking hot green tea as well and it's just as tasty.