Weight Loss: Watch What You Drink on a Diet (cont.)

"Simple is best," says Susan Ayersman, CCN, a nutritionist with the Arizona-based Kronos Optimal Health Co. Water is Ayersman's drink of choice.

"Most people don't drink enough water," she explains, yet we need water to keep our tissues hydrated and help keep our energy up.

If plain water doesn't do it for you, add slices of lemon, lime, or orange for flavor without calories. Or try a sprig of mint for a refreshing change of pace, says Ayersman.

Here are a few other suggestions:

  • Green tea (which also contains potentially cancer-preventing phytonutrients).
  • Seltzer water with just a splash of juice. Orange, grapefruit, cranberry are good choices, but mango, guava, and other tropical juices all add color and just enough sweetness to keep you from reaching for a can of soda.
  • Herbal teas.
  • Flavored (lemon, grapefruit, raspberry, mandarin orange, etc.) seltzers and soda waters.
  • Homemade lemonade -- try lemon, water, and a few drops of stevia, a natural artificial sweetener.

An occasional cappucino, latte, or coffee is fine if you need that Starbucks fix, Ayersman says. But ask for skim milk, and wave bye-bye to the blended coffee drinks, especially the ones with whipped cream toppings.

SOURCES: The Journal of Pediatrics, June 2003. News release, Cornell University. Mark Izzo, PhD, director of science and technology, Orafti Active Food Ingredients, Malvern, Pa. David L. Katz, MD, associate clinical professor of public health and medicine, Yale University. Susan Ayersman, CCN, Kronos, The Optimal Health Co., Phoenix. WebMD Feature: "You Are What You Drink," by Norra Macready, Sept. 26, 2001. WebMD Medical News: "Hidden Calorie Countdown," by Jennifer Warner, Sept. 15, 2003.

Originally published October 10, 2003
Medically updated June 6, 2005.

©2005 WebMD Inc. All rights reserved.

Last Editorial Review: 6/8/2005 8:42:55 PM