Is That Pumpkin Spice Latte Bad for You?
It's fall! The leaves are changing colors, thanks to the cooler days and colder nights, and fall is in the air, which makes drinking a cold protein shake a challenge. While everything in moderation works, most of us aren’t educated on what's healthy and what's not due to media promoting foods and drinks that spike blood sugar and promote weight gain, based on advertising dollars, not science.
The holidays are fast approaching, and if you're like me, food makes the holidays festive, which is why we need to carve out some calories out of our daily favorites to make room for holiday meals enjoyed with families versus closet eating alone, which never tastes or feels as good.
One of my early mentors/food coaches used to remind me as I would weigh in and gain weight (swearing I hardly ate anything) that what we eat in private shows up in public. Looking back, I can see how hilarious it was, but the truth was I actually believed myself when I said it. Now, I know that everything we eat has an effect on our metabolism, negatively or positively, due to its effect on our blood sugar, which can either make or break our weight loss. Even if it's a little bit/bite, it all counts.
I don't believe in deprivation. It doesn’t work, and it's also why diets and starving ourselves doesn't work either. Don’t misunderstand me; we do need to clean up our daily diet. Diet simply means what we eat, not a specified restrictive method per se.
That's exactly why I take so much time to help educate others on how to make their favorite foods and beverages healthier so they don't spike blood sugar levels. I inform them as to why overindulging in them isn't a good idea and how it might actually be the reason they gain weight in the first place.
I don't know about you, but I won't eat or drink anything if it doesn’t taste good. On the flip side, if it tastes good, I will never forget to eat or drink it, which is also the fast lane to your weight loss success
But first, I’m someone who needs to know why versus a “just don't' approach when it comes to metabolic health. Knowledge is our superpower! So having said that, I want to give you the reason why those enticing lattes aren't good for your body.
Why Pumpkin Spice Lattes Are Bad for You
Are pumpkin spice lattes bad for you? There is more to your pumpkin spice lattes than meets the eye. Pumpkin spice lattes contain:
- Dairy/lactose (a sugar )
- Several artificial flavors
- Saturated and trans fats
Here are six reasons why pumpkin spice lattes are bad for you.
Pumpkin spice lattes are overloaded with sugar
Sugar (all forms, including fruit sugar and lactose) is an inflammatory food that destroys health in every way, starting with spiking blood sugar levels. Inflammation is the root cause of most chronic illnesses, weight gain, and aches and pains, which include headaches.
Studies show that high sugar intake/elevated blood sugar levels are directly linked to joint pain and increase your risk of developing autoimmune diseases. That’s because excess sugar in your bloodstream (hyperglycemia) promotes autooxidation of glucose to form free radicals that damage cells and trigger an inflammatory immune response.
Most people don’t realize that just one grande or medium (16oz.) pumpkin spice latte contains up to 50 grams of sugar. That’s almost twice the recommended daily amount of sugar intake for the day in one drink. Making sugar matters even worse is that most coffee shops and cafes flavor their pumpkin spice lattes with syrups that are loaded with high fructose corn syrup, which is the worst kind of sugar. High fructose corn syrup is a highly refined sweetener that contains an unnatural amount of fructose. It's like sugar on steroids.
Consuming too much added sugar contributes to weight gain, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, and significantly increases your risk of heart disease.
Both high fructose corn syrup and table sugar (sucrose) both metabolize into glucose, which is the first sugar the body uses for energy. Any excess sugar will be stored as fat.
This metabolization is done through your liver. If the liver becomes overworked, the fructose is turned into fat and stored in your liver, which is known as non-alcoholic fatty liver common disease.
While natural sweeteners like honey, maple, or agave syrup may seem like healthier options than artificial sweeteners or table sugar, they too cause blood sugar fluctuations and spikes and are also processed in the liver.
So, instead of adding those trendy processed creamers or nut milks to your coffee, add some metabolic health boosting whey instead.
Pumpkin Spice Lattes Contain Dairy/Lactose
If you’ve read my book or blogs you know that dairy is one of the few foods I suggest avoiding or limiting as much as possible. Pumpkin spice lattes main ingredient is lactose-filled cows milk. Most people think that dairy is healthy, yet the truth is that 75% of the population is sensitive to lactose-filled dairy, resulting in digestive issues, from gas to bloating, and even diarrhea.
Approximately 70% of the population stops producing lactase as they get older due to the inability to produce enough lactase enzymes that breaks down the lactose, a sugar in milk.
Even if you still produce the lactase enzymes you can still experience dairy sensitivity as your immune system reacts to the casein protein found in milk and the lactose/sugar.
Sadly, most dairy farmers today inject their cows with the genetically engineered bovine growth hormone rBGH to increase milk production to keep up with demand. The increased milk production puts a strain on the cow's udders, which often leads to an infection known as mastitis, which has to be treated with antibiotics.
All those added hormones and antibiotics make their way into most typical store-bought dairy products. The good news is there are many premium dairy alternatives available that do not contain hormones, are GMO-free, and microfiltered to remove all traces of lactose, while keeping the precious amino acids in tact.
LynFit Nutrition's Proprietary Metabolic Whey Protein blend is the only whey protein that’s lactose-free, safe for diabetics. Even those who are sensitive to lactose can enjoy it due to its purity. It's the best source of protein for weight management, fat-burning, and lowering cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar. It's absolutely delicious and makes Pumpkin Spice Lattes taste even better, while keeping you feeling fuller longer and preventing cravings.
Pumpkin Spice Lattes Have Natural and Artificial Flavors
Ironically, typical store-bought pumpkin spice lattes lack actual pumpkin. The pumpkin taste in your pumpkin spice latte is actually artificial flavoring. This artificial flavoring is made from chemicals like petroleum to paper pulp, none of which you want in your body.
Artificial flavors are just that... artificial, and have a direct affect on your metabolic health. Natural flavors, on the other hand, come from a natural edible source with vitamins, minerals, and fiber from pumpkin. All of the health benefits without the harm.
Pumpkin Spice Lattes Have Preservatives
In addition to artificial flavors, the syrups that flavor pumpkin spice lattes all contain preservatives and sugar alcohols, both of which block fat loss and can trigger a heightened immune inflammatory response such as nasal congestion, runny nose, and abdominal pain.
For many it can even cause migraines in some people. Dairy products from cows milk used to make lattes, yogurts, and cheeses also contain sulfites. Sulfites are added to foods as preservatives, anti-browning agents, bleaching agents, and processing aids, that can trigger adverse respiratory reactions in those who are sensitive.
Pumpkin Spice Lattes Contain Carrageenan
Most typical pumpkin spice lattes purchased away from home come with a mound of whipped cream. In addition to the drawbacks of dairy, most whipped creams contain stabilizers such and carrageenan or sodium alginate to make it thick.
What about soy or almond milk? Both almond and soy milk also contain carrageenan to make them thicker and less watery.
Carrageenan is a water-soluble fiber found in seaweed, which by itself isn't as bad. In fact, it’s good. The problem is that when carrageenan is processed with acid it creates an inflammatory substance called poligeenan, which is not even approved as a food additive.
Research suggests that consuming poligeenan may cause colon cancer and can cause ulcers, which is a hefty price to pay for that delicious Pumpkin Spice Latte. But don't worry, I've got a healthier solution I’ll share later in this blog.
Skip the whipped cream altogether due to the dairy carcinogen content and try frothing (use less water and blend longer on medium speed until it thickens) your natural metabolic boosting whey instead. It's a healthier alternative with benefits that span far beyond immune boosting, weight loss, and fat-burning.
Pumpkin Spice Lattes Contain Artificial (Caramel) Color
The most commonly used food dye in the world used in coffee syrups is caramel color. Its chemical name is 4-methylimidazole or 4-Me, and research shows it causes cancer in mice. The International Agency for Research on Cancer declared caramel color to be “possibly carcinogenic to humans.” I consider this a good enough reason to avoid caramel color or anything that contains artificial colors.
Thankfully, there are healthier alternatives without the inflammatory ingredients. There is a better, healthier way to satisfy your Pumpkin Spice Latte cravings without the inflammation or weight gain.
You'll get bold pumpkin pie cinnamon and nutmeg flavors with metabolic boosting protein by adding LynFit Clean Keto French Vanilla Crème or Salted Caramel Whey Protein.
You'll get a 25% metabolic boost, which balances cortisol levels, reduces inflammation, and prevents weight gain. Along with 25 grams of Non-GMO whey protein, 5 grams of fiber in prebiotic form in only 140 calories, and 5 low glycemic carbs that feed the muscle but starve the fat, so it melts off your waistline.
- (1¼ cup) Warm (not hot) espresso or strong brewed coffee
- (2 tbsp.) Pure pumpkin purée
- (2 scoops) French Vanilla Crème Metabolic Boosting Complete Protein Powder
- (¼ tsp.) Pumpkin pie spice, plus more for sprinkling
Combine the coffee, pumpkin purée, pumpkin pie spice, and Metabolic Complete Protein Powder in blender and blend until frothy. Pour into large mug and heat carefully -- microwave for one minute or less. Sprinkle pumpkin spice on top and enjoy!
No need to restrict your pleasure. Just make it healthier the LynFit WHEY! Your body will thank you!
Lisa Lynn, Clinical Metabolic Nutrition & Fitness Expert. Best known for her 18+ years as Martha Stewart’s trainer, who was responsible for Martha’s over-50 amazing physical transformation that caught the attention of Dr. Oz, leading to her many appearances on the Dr. Oz Show. Lisa is not just another trainer; she herself lost 40 pounds and has kept it off, even with a sluggish thyroid and menopause.
- Lisa Lynn