Processed and added sugars have a bad reputation among people watching their weight and sugar levels. If you love sweetened beverages, then you might want to know how much sugar is in a chai latte is healthy for your body. Keep reading to learn more.
A Chai latte is a common beverage enjoyed by billions of people worldwide. If you are a health-conscious individual, you would want to limit the amount of sugar in your chai latte. But how much sugar in a chai latte is considered healthy? Or should you drink your chai latte sugar-free? We try to answer these questions and more in the sections below.
Sugar Content in a Chai Latte
The question of how much sugar is in a chai latte is rather common. And the right answer is that chai latte sugar content depends on the chai ingredients you are using. It also depends on the type of sugar you are referring to. So let's break it down.
As the name suggests, a Chai latte is a mixture of milk, tea, spices and sugar or a natural sweetener such as agave. Whether low-fat, whole or skim, milk contains naturally occurring and healthy sugars called lactose. Unless, of course you use plant based milks.
And so you may ask, does chai (tea) have sugar? By default, black, green, yellow, or traditional/herbal tea does not contain sugar. You should also note that there are three types of sugars: natural sugars found in whole foods, added sugars that appear in food like bread and yogurt, and processed/refined sugars found in cookies, candy, and cakes.
To put it into perspective, a chai latte may contain only natural sugars or natural and added sugars. Again, It depends on the ingredients you use. If you drink your chai latte without any sweetener or with agave or honey instead of refined sugar, you'll have chosen a healthier less refined alternative.
One teaspoon of sugar is roughly 4.2 grams and contains 16 calories, most of which have no nutritional value. However, one teaspoon of honey contains 7 grams of natural sugars and 21 calories, most of which contain small amounts of vitamins and minerals. Honey is also rich in health-promoting compounds called polyphenols. The high-calorie content in honey means you’ll need to consume only a little to feel full or get the required energy levels.
Does the Sugar in Chai Latte Cause Weight Gain?
If you are watching your calorie intake and overall body weight, sugar is one of the ingredients you would want to avoid. Some studies have linked added sugars in sweetened beverages, cereals, and baked foods to weight gain and chronic health conditions.
There are several reasons why added sugar in a Chai Latte is fattening. The first reason is that added sugars are high in empty calories, which increases the chances of weight gain. These sugars also impact hormone and blood sugar levels, increasing the risks of obesity.
To keep track of your weight, you want to replace refined sugars with organic sweeteners or drink a sugar-free chai latte. You can also refer to our guide – how many calories in chai, and learn how to count calories in chai and how to choose healthier ingredients.
Switching from Sugar to Honey, Does it Make a Chai Latte Less Delicious?
Now that honey is healthier than refined sugar, will using it as a natural sweetener make your chai latte less delicious? Absolutely not. Honey is sweeter than sugar, so you'll need less of it for your chai latte to taste. Similarly, it has a higher calorie intake per teaspoon compared to sugar. So if you are conscious about your weight, you want to use honey in moderation.
How to Choose a Healthier Chai Latte with Less Sugar?
A healthier chai latte won't mess up your body weight and blood sugar levels. Like all things, moderation should be observed. Similarly, there are a couple of ways to ensure that your latte is healthier and tasty while also fulfilling your hunger. These include preparing a low-sugar chai latte by limiting the amount of added sugar, replacing sugar with natural sweeteners, or using milk with a lower fat content, such as skim milk or plant-based milk. The best pick depends on your health goals and the available resources. Besides honey, you can also try other natural sweeteners such as agave nectar, Stevia, and coconut sugar. See our tips to keep chai's calories low here
Where to Buy Healthier Chai for Your Chai Latte?
After selecting the type and amount of sugars and the fat content of the milk to use in your chai latte, you may also want to consider your chai options. For a healthier and tasty chai latte, you should consider an organic chai blend, i.e., one made of 100% organic ingredients and rich in antioxidants. You can pick your favorite, specialty, all-natural chai blend at our Monk's Chai shop.
A cup of chai latte can be refreshing, nourishing, and fulfilling if you keenly choose the right ingredients. Health-conscious individuals know there's no better way to drink chai latte than to use all-natural ingredients. Take note of the ingredients we have mentioned above and choose to always go healthy with your chai latte.