I met The Husband when I worked in a coffeehouse. It was there that my love affair began. No, not with The Husband. That happened later, since he was dating a coworker. I’m talking about coffee. Some may say it is an addiction, but I choose to say that it is a love. Some nights I go to bed for no other reason than knowing I can have a hot cup of coffee when I wake up.
I have downgraded from coffeehouse coffee, though. Who has $4.50 to spend on coffee every day? Certainly not me (and really, I never did. One of the perks of works in the coffeehouse was all free coffee I wanted).
My drink of choice back then was a double short caramel vanilla latte. Let me break that down for those of you who don’t know the lingo. I had a small size cup with two shots of espresso (as compared to the normal one shot for a small). Then I added a shot of vanilla syrup and a shot of caramel syrup, topped it off with steamed milk and I had perfection in a cup. As a treat recently The Husband bought me “my drink”. I couldn’t drink it. It was SO sweet it made me feel sick. Which of course made me feel terrible, since he was so nice to me. Anyway. Back to my story.
After leaving the coffeehouse I needed to find a cheap version of my drink. Coffeemate came to my rescue. They make a Vanilla Caramel creamer. That was what I used for years, until I started learning about the right foods to put in my body. I’ve searched high and low online for the ingredients in it, and can’t find it anywhere. Not even on their website. I wonder why that is?! I will write them down next time I go to the grocery store, and edit this post with the correct ingredients. ANYWAY. After I learned how bad it is for you, the Coffeemate had to go.
I switched to Le Crème creamer. I used the Cinnamon Vanilla one. It was okay, but not what I was used to. At least it wasn’t full of “stuff”.
Then Coffeemate came out with their natural line. I used the Caramel one for a while, but for the last 4 months or so I’ve been using the Sweet Cream one.
The ingredient list on my bottle says “Nonfat milk, heavy cream, sugar, natural flavors”. Now, I know the first thing you are going to say. What, exactly, are natural flavors? Am I right? The answer is… It could be any number of things. The words are not very regulated by the FDA. Here’s what the code regulations say, exactly:
”The term natural flavor or natural flavoring means the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose significant function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional.”
What does this mean? Not a whole lot. It basically says that anything can be used and called “natural flavors”.
I’ve decided that I’m okay with this one “unknown”. At least for now. I know that this is WAY better than the original creamer I was using. And I’ve been learning to cut way back. I use less than ½ Tbsp for each mug of coffee I have. Eventually I will be able to switch to just half and half, and then maybe even just black (since I know that is the best choice, health wise).
Do you drink coffee? How do you like it, flavored or plain? Creamer or black? How much do you drink a day? Ever see yourself giving it up?