Lattes, whether iced or hot, are some of the most delicious drinks on the planet. They are comforting and yummy. However, you might have heard that lattes aren’t healthy and should actually be avoided. So, are lattes bad for you?
It largely depends on the latte. However, the main three ingredients of most lattes–coffee, cream, and sugar–aren’t inherently that healthy.
When taken occasionally or in small amounts, they won’t harm you too much. You should probably be cautious about a daily latte, even if it is skinny. No one is trying to say that you should never drink a latte. It’s a great feeling to drink something you love and enjoy the taste of a hot drink.
You should simply be careful how often you put these ingredients in your body and know what you’re drinking before buying it! Informed choices are the best choices.
Brewing A Healthy Latte
Determing are lattes healthy depends on how much creamer and sweetener you add to your cup. For context, the essential ingredients of a latte are:
If you’re wondering are lattes bad for you, use creamer and sweetener in moderation. Some of the more sugared, syrupy versions are even actively bad for you. However, there are ways to make lattes healthier. Simply swap out some of the more dangerous ingredients, or make your own at home! Read our guide to a breve latte.
Coffee, of course, is the main ingredient in any latte. It’s the healthiest ingredient in a latte–unlike cream and sugar, coffee has several natural nutrients and antioxidants. While too much coffee can cause a headache, enjoying a cup or a latte every once in a while won’t hurt you.
If you want less caffeine intake, you can ask for a decaf latte (or a chai tea latte). Either of these options still contains some caffeine, but not nearly as much as a full cup of coffee.
Cream Or Milk
Creamers vary, depending on the flavor of the latte and the coffee shop where you are getting it. At any place, the creamer will by default be dairy milk, high in fat and natural sugars.
While fats and sugars are necessary in small amounts, too much is bad for our bodies. Lattes won’t make or break anything, but they do have a good amount of milk in them!
The cream is one of the most dangerous parts of the latte. Luckily, it’s also one of the easiest to swap out. In this day of non-dairy options, it is beyond easy to find a healthier creamer than the traditional, full-fat dairy milk. Check out our latte vs. skinny latte guide. Pick the best choice for your latte. Some options include:
- Oat Milk
- Almond Milk
- 1% Milk or Skim Milk
Some say that sugar is the most addictive drug on the planet. Whether or not that’s true, it is undoubtedly easy to consume a lot of sugar without realizing it. When even healthy things like fruit have sugar, you can reach your daily limit easily.
Too much sugar intake can increase the risks of diabetes, obesity, cavities, and many other health problems. The main issue with sugar is that it is sneaky.
Sugar is not just the coarse type you can put in your coffee. It is also in the flavored syrup and whipped cream and can even be in flavored creamer. Read our guide to sugar substitutes for coffee.
To cut down on sugar in lattes, ask for fewer pumps of syrup. If you don’t have issues with Splenda or other sugar substitutes, you can ask for their sugar-free option. Be aware that it won’t be completely sugar-free, but it can help you reduce your sugar intake!