Your Daily Coffee Habit Is Destroying Your Weight Loss Plans, Experts Suggest

Just one coffee a day, every day of the week, can be worth a whole extra day's worth of meals.

Your Daily Coffee Habit Is Destroying Your Weight Loss Plans, Experts Suggest

Your daily cup of hot brown could be just as much to blame for disrupting your meal plan as your Friday night beers, research suggests.

If you’re someone who puts a lot of effort into planning and sticking to a gym workout but you’re finding that you’re making little to no progress (even despite following a strict meal plan) – you may be forgetting about your daily coffee intake. Especially if you’re a latte drinker.

Now, we’re not demonising latte drinkers at all, but as one DMARGE correspondent recently revealed to us, a traditional latte can have anywhere between 150-200 calories, depending on the size and if you add anything extra such as sugar or sweetener. If you prefer your latte to be flavoured with vanilla or caramel syrup, for example, this figure will only stand to increase.

In fact, Healthline states a non-fat 8oz latte (traditionally a small in Australia) will have around 72 calories, while a flavoured 8oz latte will contain around 134.

If you then have just one a day, every day of the week, you’re looking at close to 1,000 calories consumed, just from coffee alone. No amount of steamed chicken or squats is going to offset that.

Latte art might be pretty but it might be upsetting your gains.

DMARGE has previously discussed how coffee can stop you getting shredded, in the context of someone choosing a coffee and a ‘healthy snack’ over a larger lunch, based on the belief that it will be healthier. And even then it was deemed a ‘proper’ lunch is always going to prevail.

And what of milk alternatives such as Australia’s favourite, oat milk? How much do they influence the caloric content of your daily dose of caffeine?

Let’s crunch some numbers.

L’Or Espresso says a typical latte will have between 170 – 225ml of milk. Healthline adds that a 240ml serving of Oatly oat milk has 120 calories, meaning 1 calorie per 2ml of milk. So, if you went in at the top end and added 225ml of Oatly oat milk to your coffee, that’s 112.5 calories. The double shot of espresso will only rack up around 4 calories, bringing the total to 116.5 calories, for one oat milk latte.

RELATED: ‘Oat Is The New Almond’: The Coffee Trend Australia Can’t Get Enough Of

Two oat milk lattes a day, every day of the week, and that’s 1,631 calories you’ve racked up. Now, if you’re on a meal plan designed to help you bulk up – such as Chris Hemsworth’s 4,500 calorie per day feast – then 1,600 calories aren’t going to eat too much into it. But if you’re on a more ‘normal’ meal plan of, say, 1,800 calories per day, then your coffee habit could equate, over the course of a week, to an extra day’s worth of meals.

So why do we still consume coffee with abandon and forget to give much thought to what we’re actually putting into our bodies?

It’s important to be mindful of your coffee intake.

DMARGE spoke to Ben Lucas, former NRL player and founder of Flow Athletic, to get his two cents on whether we should rethink our relationship with coffee or if we should still be allowed a little bit of good in our lives.

Ben says firstly, “if you have one or two coffees a day and you really enjoy them, then I say go for it. Having a coffee in the morning is often a relaxing, mindful moment for someone before they start their day – however, there are two things you should consider.”

“The first one is, if you are very stressed or if you are drinking lots of coffee, then that can spike your cortisol levels and keep them spiked.”

Ben Lucas

“While a bit of cortisol (which is the hormone released when you add stress to your body, such as momentarily during a HIIT workout or if you’re running away from a deadly animal) is absolutely fine… But having it high for a long period of time can affect digestion, so you may put on weight, often around your stomach.

“It can also affect your sleep and your mood, etc. If you are heavily stressed or drinking too much coffee, then you may want to be more mindful of your lifestyle in general.”

RELATED: ‘Better Than Sex’: Australia’s Most Expensive Coffee Blew My Mind

“Additionally, consider what is going into your coffee,” he advises. “Are you adding cream, syrups, sugar? If you are then calorie-wise, you may want to change up your order to something more simple and less sweet.”

Syrup might make coffee taste sweeter, but it’s terrible for your calorie intake.

And for those of you who think they can effectively cheat the system, and use the calorie intake from your weekly coffee ritual as part of an overall weekly calorie intake, think again.

“I wouldn’t [replace food with coffee],” says Ben, “I would aim to cut down. Aim to have 1-2 normal-sized coffees and follow a healthy diet. Coffee alone does have some antioxidants, but having that instead of food is not really a balanced diet.”

RELATED: Wine Or Spirits: Which Is Better For Weight Loss?

Ben’s recommendation if you simply can’t resist your caffeine cravings? “Aim to have a coffee with a splash of milk and no sugar, a black coffee or a simple flat white.”

Is it time we said see ya later to the latte, then?

Read Next