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“Shocking” Sugar Levels at Starbucks, Warns Charity

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Is Starbucks selling coffee, or is it just glorified liquid candy? Action on Sugar analyzed 131 different hot drinks from different brands, and found “shocking” sugar levels in many of them.

The worst offender of all is Starbucks. Just one of their drinks contained 99 grams of sugar in a single serving, equivalent to 25 teaspoons of sugar (!) or more than three times the maximum daily recommended adult intake. It’s almost as much sugar as found in three cans of Coca-Cola.

Starbucks featured prominently in the report with three different drinks among worst sugar offenders found.

At this rate people may start calling them Sugarbucks… if they were honest they should perhaps draw a fat little mermaid on their cups.

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7 Comments

  1. Bob Niland
    All I ever have at SB is coffee, black. Anyone who consumes anything else there cannot assume that it's any safer than any random processed food anywhere. There's nothing uniquely shocking about it. The only health difference between SB junk food and truck stop junk food is the price.

    If you view the SB web pages on foods/pastries, for example, their focus on calorie counts and low-fat puts you on notice that they conform to consensus cluelessness.

    Select, for example "Exclude wheat" on the allergens list, and the number of pastries collapses to two, both sky-high glycemic (mostly sugars), and one with soy oil for extra punishment.

    Wake me when they have a filter options for "Low carb" and "Low PUFA". Meanwhile, no, thank you, I don't need room for condiments in the cup.

  2. Andi
    I still remember after my first full year low carb I really wanted one of those Starbucks Peppermint Mochas at Christmas. I bought one all excited to enjoy it and after my first drink I realized I could not enjoy it because it was too SWEET!
  3. Apicius
    I call them "char-bucks"...they burn the heck out of their coffee beans. Over-roasting beans makes the coffee more bitter and then you don't need to bother with sourcing higher quality beans. Much better coffee options out there...why bother at all with char-bucks?
  4. RT
    Sometimes the response to these kinds of situations is lawsuits, or at least demonization of the companies involved (not necessarily saying that's the case here). It's good to be armed with knowledge about sugar content, but one can simply make a deliberate choice of non- sugary drinks. Here is a link to a list of such drinks on the Starbucks menu: http://coffeetea.about.com/od/coffeeteanutritionalinfo/a/Sugar-free-S...
    I wouldn't refer to Starbucks as an "offender" because a lot of their drinks contain sugar. If you don't want to drink sugar, don't drink sugar. No one at Starbucks is forcing people to buy caramel frappucinos at gunpoint.
    If governments or corporations try to prevent the spread of accurate data about sugar content or proper nutritional science, that's one thing. It should be fought tooth and nail. But if a company is offering something people want, the best way to combat unhealthy choices is with information. That's why I'm highly skeptical about trying to tax and regulate specific substances. Keep refined sugars out of school lunches, sure. Educate kids about what too much sugar can do to their bodies, definitely. Keep Big Sugar sponsorship out of public education, absolutely. But once armed with the knowledge of what sugar (or trans fats, simple carbs, etc.) can do to you, it's your choice what to eat or drink. Beware those who would tax-and-regulate us "for our own good." https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=-V3rEvZY9nI
  5. RT
  6. Mihir
    nothing wrong with starbucks. i usually get a black coffee and have them put a couple splashes of heavy cream in there. every couple weeks, i treat myself to a sugar-free mocha made with heavy cream instead of milk. i call it, the "fatty latte". the first couple times i ordered it, the person seemed confused. "you want sugar free syrup, but heavy cream instead of skim milk?"
    Reply: #7
  7. Maya
    I asked for a mocha at a place not Starbucks, with heavy cream instead of milk. The server and I got into an argument ("well, if you don't want half-and-half, you don't want heavy cream, because there's dairy in heavy cream. Maybe you want almond or soy milk instead") but eventually, as I was paying, I got my mocha. I last had half-and-half with Starbucks coffee, and also had with it 45 minutes of intestinal pain and stomach cramps. So I take my coffee black, with cinnamon, or with heavy cream, or as a heavy cream-and-coconut oil-"latte".

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