There are many healthy drinks high in calories if you’re looking to gain weight, you’ll want to drink the opposite. The number of calories in your favorite adult beverage can increase your caloric intake by hundreds if not thousands. This article will guide you through the best drinks high in calories for weight gain.
WHAT ARE LIQUID CALORIES?
In order to calculate the calorie balance, we need to factor in both solid foods and “liquid calories” from beverages. The following drinks are particularly high in calories and not recommended to quench your thirst. We’ve used sugar cubes to help you visualize approximately how much sugar these high calorie drinks actually contain.
These drinks are especially high in calories:
- Soft drinks, like soda (250 ml) = 105 calories, 9 cubes of sugar
- Ice tea (250 ml) = 70 calories, 6 cubes of sugar
- Fruit smoothie (250 ml) = 135 calories, 10 cubes of sugar
- Orange juice (250 ml) = 115 calories, 8 cubes of sugar
- Energy drink (250 ml) = 116 calories, 9 cubes of sugar
- Fruit-flavored buttermilk (250 ml) = 160 calories, 10 cubes of sugar
- Isotonic drink (250 ml) = 60 calories, 5 cubes of sugar
- White wine, sweet (250 ml) = 250 calories, 5 cubes of sugar
- Red wine (250 ml) = 210 calories, 4 ½ cubes of sugar
- Beer (250 ml) = 100 calories, 0 cubes of sugar
- Piña colada (250 ml) = 235 calories, 9 cubes of sugar
So, you can see that seemingly “healthy” drinks are anything but low-cal. Most store-bought smoothies, for example, consist mainly of fruit, which explains why their (fructose) sugar content is so high.
Make your own smoothies and always add more vegetables than fruit.
WHAT’S REALLY IN THOSE HIGH-CALORIE DRINKS?
Soft drinks, sodas, and fruit juices are really sweet, because they’re loaded with sugar (except for light beverages). This not only damages your teeth, high consumption can lead to obesity which increases the risk of developing metabolic disorders like type 2 diabetes. This is a growing problem, as the consumption of soft drinks by children and adolescents has increased dramatically in recent decades.
Alcohol has a whopping 7 calories per 1 g (almost as much as fat) and therefore carries a lot of weight in terms of calories. Alcohol isn’t known as a luxury good for nothing. Do you exercise? Regular alcohol consumption can hurt your performance.
WHAT IS THE PERFECT THIRST-QUENCHER?
You should always drink water or unsweetened tea to satisfy your thirst. These have zero calories and rehydrate your body. When it’s hot outside, or you’re training intensely and you sweat a lot, you’re going to lose a lot of fluid. You can calculate your daily liquid requirement using the following calculator:
Alcohol Is High in Calories
In general, drinks made with alcohol are high in calories. “Protein and carbohydrates have 4 calories per gram, fat has 9 but alcohol has 7,” Ginger Hultin MS, RDN, owner of ChampagneNutrition, told Health. “When you look at mixers like juices, soda, syrups, cream, whipped cream, or coconut milk, the calories in an alcoholic beverage can be really high.”
Speaking of syrups and whipped cream, some cocktails can be sneakily high in calories. “Some margaritas, daiquiris, and pina coladas can be very high in added sugar and saturated fat,” Hultin added.
If you want to drink alcohol and are keeping your weight in mind, Hultin suggested several lower-calorie options. Hultin’s recommendations include beers with a lower ABV (alcohol by volume), like Pilsners or Lagers (which are around 100 calories per bottle, compared to 150 calories in a “regular” beer), and dry red or white wine (which are around 120 calories per 5-ounce glass). “Aim for 4% to 5% ABV in beer and 10% to 12% in wine,” Hultin said.
If beer and wine don’t get your taste buds going, spirits mixed with water or soda water can also be a lower-calorie option, like vodka and soda, which has about 100 calories per standard 7.5-ounce glass.
Alcohol Messes With Your Hormones
Hormones play a crucial role in the healthy functioning of the body’s tissues and organs. “When the hormone system is working properly, the right amount of hormone is released at exactly the right time, and the tissues of the body accurately respond to those messages,” Maurin explained.
Drinking alcohol can impair the functions of the glands that release hormones and the functions of the tissues targeted by those hormones, which can result in a range of health issues. “Alcohol consumption causes increased levels of the hormone cortisol, which has been linked to weight gain,” Maurin said. According to a 2013 review published in Endocrinology and Metabolism Clinics of North America, long-term, excessive alcohol intake can cause hormone changes that disrupt thyroid function, immunity, and bone health to name a few.
Scientists are still trying to figure out exactly how much alcohol causes this increase in cortisol. “There’s no black and white answer here; everyone is unique in how their bodies react and break down alcohol,” Maurin explained. Maurin also noted that many studies on this topic include an “intoxicated” study group and/or alcohol-dependent individuals, who may require a larger amount of alcohol to be affected.
How to Drink More Calories to Achieve your Weight Gain Goal
In theory, bulking seems like it would be incredibly easy and – more importantly – lots of fun. The reality, though, is that eating all those extra calories that you need to gain weight can be an overwhelming, time-consuming and expensive venture.
Just to put this into perspective, consider this:
An average-sized guy might need to eat close to 3000 calories each day to gain any noticeable weight. That averages out to about 95oz of chicken breast each day.
The solution, then, is to drink your calories. But how?
Know Your Numbers
Whether you’re going to be eating or drinking your calories to achieve your weight gain goal, you need to exactly how much you’re supposed to be eating every day. And for that, you’ll need to do some math. Sorry.
First, you need to calculate you Basal Metabolic Rate – the amount of calories that you spend just being alive.
To do that, use whichever formula is appropriate for you:
Women: BMR = 655 + (4.35 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) – (4.7 x age in years)
Men: BMR = 66 + (6.23 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) – (6.8 x age in years)
But, you don’t sit around all day doing nothing. And everything that you do burns calories. So, we need to account for that.
This number is known as the Total Daily Energy Expenditure and is calculated by multiplying your BMR by one of the following activity factors:
Sedentary (little or no exercise): 1.2
Lightly active (light exercise/sports 1-3 days/week): 1.375
Moderately active (moderate exercise/sports 3-5 days/week): 1.55
Very active (hard exercise/sports 6-7 days a week): 1.725
Extra active (very hard exercise/sports & physical job or 2x training): 1.9
The resulting number is the amount of calories that you need to eat every day just to maintain your current weight. Which isn’t what you want.
So, take your TDEE and add 10 percent. That’s the amount of calories you need to eat every day to gain weight.
Now that you know your caloric needs, the next step is actually eating that much. And, as mentioned, that can be a real challenge.
Because liquids are, well… liquid, it’s much easier to drink high-calorie beverages than it is to eat the same amount of fuel.
Milk – whether from cows or coconuts – is a great way to easily add calories to your regular routine. That same drink can also be bulked up with the use of nut butters and other additives.
While any protein powder is also an easy way to add nutrition and calories to your liquid snack, it’s important to choose wisely.
A clean mass gainer, like Naked Mass, is exactly what you need. Rather than just one source of protein, Naked Mass uses both fast-acting whey and slow casein to give you a steady stream of protein over several hours.
Plus, Naked Mass contains quality carbs that will help you gain weight while also keeping your energy levels up throughout the day.
Drinks That Make You Gain Weight
Obesity is a growing problem in the Western world, with more than a third of American adults being classed as clinically obese. The population of the first-world now generally takes in many more calories than are expended, and combined with the easy availability of unhealthy food and drink products, this obesity trend is only set to rise. Drinks can often be a source of secret calories, with many people paying less attention to calorific intake in these than they do with food. Read on to learn more about drinks that make you gain weight.
Fizzy drinks are packed with calories, but unfortunately do not make you feel less full, making them one of the worst things for your weight. Despite this, sugary drinks are the top calorie source in American teens’ diets, and half the population in U.S. consumes these beverages daily. The lack of fullness results in consumers not cutting back on calories elsewhere, so calories ingested in a sugary drink are almost always “surplus,” adding to weight gain.
“Diet” or “Light” Drinks
The bad news is, “diet” or “light” alternatives to sugary and fizzy drinks are not going to reduce weight gain either. The reason a “diet” drink is one of the drinks that make you gain weight is because of the artificial sweeteners it contains. Many studies have demonstrated that sucrose substitutes – such as saccharin, aspartame, and cyclamate – have an adverse effect on the waistline. Part of the reason is chemical: the sweeteners have a weight-increasing effect, and part of the reason is that some people who drink these drinks then feel justified to make up more calories elsewhere to compensate for the perceived reduction of calories being drunk.
Whole milk is one of the drinks that make you gain weight because – although it contains many important nutrients – it is also high in fat content. Therefore, a glass of whole milk is much more calorific than its skimmed counterpart. Consequently, it is advisable to drink milk that has a less than 2% fat content if you wish to reap the nutritional benefits of milk.
All alcohol contains calories, and those who drink a lot are at a higher risk of becoming overweight. However, some alcoholic drinks are worse than others. There are alcoholic beverages that are have a worse effect on the waistline than wine (such as cocktails), but wine is unfortunately still one of the drinks that can make you gain weight. This is especially true in the case of sparkling, sweet, and dessert wines. To reduce calories while also enjoying wine, it is best to opt for the dry varieties.
Not surprisingly, cocktails have made it onto the “drinks that make you gain weight” list. The calorific alcohol combined with the sugary juices is to blame for this, with daiquiris, margaritas, and piña coladas packing well over 200 calories per drink. Read about alcohol and weight gain.
When trying to live a healthy lifestyle, knowing the drinks that gain weight is just as important as being aware of the foods that make you gain weight. Most drinks are acceptable in moderation, and when combined with a good exercise regime, there is no reason the drinks above cannot be enjoyed. The main thing is to cut back on these drinks and increase your intake of water, which is calorie-free and hydrating. Continue with a weekly plan to lose weight.