Ah… Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes (or PSLs for those in the know)– the first sign of Fall! And for many with even the most discerning nutritional habits, they’re a yearly indulgence that conjures images of cozy sweaters, leaves changing colors, pumpkin pie… what’s not to love? It turns out, a lot. Read on for the full rundown…
While we’ve known for a while that those artificially flavored syrups in Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes (and a bunch of other drinks for that matter) aren’t exactly *ahem* the best for us, it wasn’t all that long ago that we last said, “Screw it! I’m gonna treat myself.” So we did. And even after ordering the drink non-dairy and with 1/2 the pumps, a major stomach ache reminded us exactly why we’d made the move to eliminate these types of things from our diet in the first place.
So what in the world is in them? And why do we feel so awful after drinking them?!
While there’s plenty of low calorie options like iced teas and iced coffee, Starbucks isn’t exactly known for their health oriented drinks. Between the Unicorn Frappuccino and the Pumpkin Spice Latte there’s a glutton of calorie dense, sugar and preservative laden drinks in the house. Between the color and the flavor of the PSL, we have to admit we’ve always been a bit suspect, so it didn’t come as surprise to find out it wasn’t exactly ‘healthy.’ We already knew that! But we have to say, we were a bit surprised to see just which ingredients were on the list.
We loved this no nonsense rundown from MEL detailing the full list of ingredients, what they do, and where else you may find them in your daily life along with some additional research to help demystify things.
The TLDR version? Between the incredibly high sugar (12 teaspoons!), carrageenan, sulfiting agents, trans fats and preservatives… back away. It’s not worth it.
Overall, we couldn’t be more happy to kick this habit to the curb and stick to our favorite make at home recipes for pumpkin spice lattes from here on out. And when we’re traveling or hanging at Starbucks, we’ll stick to our usual unsweetened tea or iced coffee with a side of roasted almonds and a banana.