It’s Baacck…

Pumpkin Spiced Latte & Van’s Gluten-Free Cranberry Almond Snack Bar…yes the barista misspelled my name

It’s finally September, and September means Fall, and Fall means it’s Pumpkin Spiced Latte season at Starbucks. I like to treat myself to coffee once a week and this week it was a no-brainer what my choice would be. Even when you’re trying to eat clean there are a few things you can do to make your coffee-going experience a little healthier. As you probably know, coffee in moderation is actually good for you, but it’s all that added sugar, syrups, and creamer that can make it bad, so here are my tips:

Smaller is better

Go for the smallest size your café has to offer. I usually get a Tall at Starbucks

Take it down a notch

If you’re getting a specialty drink like I did, ask for half the pumps of flavored syrup. A Tall at Starbucks usually consists of 3 pumps of Pumpkin flavored syrup so I ask for 1.5

Swap it out

Instead of sugar ask if your barista can replace your sweetener with natural Stevia. If they don’t have Stevia, bring your own to add in

If you’re having an espresso or latte, ask for steamed 2% milk so it’s less calories, and if you’re just having regular coffee, I suggest a splash of half and half…none of that flavored creamer gunk that’s so heavily processed.

Happy FALL!

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I Dream of Coffee

Hi I’m Rakhi and I’m a recovering coffee addict lover. There’s nothing I don’t like about coffee, except maybe for the fact that it makes me sick:( If you read my first post on how I jumpstarted my recovery to good health by doing a  detox, you’ll know that coffee was one of those items on the ‘break up with these foods’ list and it was one of the hardest breakups I’ve ever had to face. I’ve never cried over a guy, but I have for coffee. And cake. I still dream of cake too. 

In the beginning of my elimination diet, giving up coffee wasn’t that bad since I liked it for the taste rather than needing it for the caffeine. I felt great, my GI issues went away, my allergies were clearing, and I had all the energy I needed from fruits. But once I introduced it back into my diet, it was like giving candy to a baby. The initial few moments were great, I felt the rush and I wanted more…and then came the crash and the bloating and the joint pains a few days later. I was in denial. I was convinced it was something else I had eaten causing my symptoms to come back again. So I switched from sugar to stevia, and went for an all-natural creamer and that seemed to help. But then I started drinking a cup a day and it became pretty obvious, too much coffee made me sick.

In the beginning I was devastated. No more hot White Mocha Breve’s during fall and winters? A lifetime of summers without Iced Coffees? How was I going to deal? I tried coffee again, because well sometimes, like in any relationship you have to keep working at it to make it work, and I still loved coffee, and I was hoping coffee still loved me back; and it did. Turns out I’m intolerant to coffee in large amounts, but drinking one cup a week won’t make me utterly ill.

Being in great health to me isn’t about having to make great sacrifices but just slight compromises. Being in good health means I can still put on my William Ackerman playlist while I do yoga sun salutations without having my wrists ache. It means walking down to the farmer’s market on a Sunday and coming home to make a great nutritious meal with my family while winding down to some wine. You shouldn’t have to sacrifice taste for health and it’s ok to cheat every once in a while because at the end of the day you deserve what makes you happy.

This post is part of the Daily Post Weekly Writing Challege: Fit to Write