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Drink Starbucks and Keep Your New Years Resolutions With These Hacks!

Pushing your health to the forefront doesn't mean your daily Starbucks has to be nixed.

With the new year in tow, many of us are choosing resolutions to better ourselves. The top resolution every year is of course to loose weight or work on being a healthier human. These resolutions usually cut into our normal diet, and when I talk about my personal diet, I am referring to the Starbucks that I drink in place of meals.

While this may not be totally healthy, there are still ways to design your latte to have less dairy, sugar, and fat to keep those new resolutions. So from your friendly neighborhood Starbucks barista to you, here are my tips to make your drink New Year’s acceptable.

Cut out the dairy from your drink.

Starbucks has so many milk substitutes, so if you’re looking to cut out dairy, take advantage of them! They offer an unsweetened almond and coconut milk as well as a vanilla flavored soy milk, which is my personal favorite.

There are so many benefits to these milks as they are low calorie, free of cholesterol, and are obviously lactose free. Both almond and soy milk contain absolutely no saturated fat and soy milk itself is a good source of protein and potassium.

And if you’re not willing to substitute your milk, Starbucks can always make your drink with just regular non-fat milk, instead of 2% or whole milk.

Choose the sugar-free option.

Now some may find this more difficult as there are not as many sugar-free syrups compared to the mass amount of regular syrups they have. Starbucks does however offer a sugar-free cinnamon dolce syrup. a sugar-free vanilla syrup, and a sugar-free mocha.

With a simple change from regular vanilla syrup to sugar-free vanilla syrup, you could be saving up to 50 calories per pump.

Skip the whip cream.

Starbucks seems to spray whip cream on almost every single new drink they come out with. But to save yourself from the heavy cream and vanilla concoction calories, just kindly ask your barista to skip it. You’ll save the calories and you’ll ultimately get your drink quicker, with the barista having to complete one less step.

Actually, skip all the extras Starbuck’s offers.

If you’re trying to stay on top of a New Years Resolution probably skip or ask for light caramel drizzle, mocha drizzle, various drink toppings, and of course the afore-mentioned whip cream. All of these can quickly make your drip coffee a sugary dessert, rather than a quick mid-day pickup.

While we’re on the topic, skip that freaking Frappuccino.

Not only will skipping this god forsaken creation save your barista time and patience, it will also save you more than a meal’s worth of calories. If you have never watched your barista make your favorite Frappuccino, an excessive amount of sugar is used to make it. Not only do you have the sugar in the syrup to sweeten it and make it taste like vanilla or mocha, or hell, even butterscotch (which is launching on 1/9), it also includes a thick sugary syrup to help it all blend together.

You can order the “Lite Base” but it won’t be saving you much of the 300-600 calories you’ll be slurping through that famous green straw.

Change up your regular Starbucks order.

If changing your favorite drink is too much of a sacrifice, maybe branch out and try something new. Starbucks offers a variety of hot and iced teas, which have some of the lowest if not the lowest calorie count on the menu. They offer white, green, black, passion and herbal teas that are both hot and iced.

In the iced versions you can get an herbal infusion in your regular (green, black, white or passion) iced tea. These herbal infusions have a very strong pineapple, strawberry or peach flavor without any of the added sugar of the syrups, making it a perfect unsweetened drink to help you stick to your New Year’s Resolution.

Finally, be nice to your barista.

If there’s one resolution we could all learn something from is just being a little kinder to the world around us. So let’s start with the people we see first thing every morning: our baristas. Ask them how they are, how their days have been and be sure to include a please and a thank you.

Kindness goes a long way and really can change your barista’s and your own day.

So go forth with your new Starbucks knowledge and save yourself from all of the unnecessary calories and be sure to stick to that New Year’s resolution. We know you can do it! (And if you can’t, choose a  more reasonable resolution!)  If you need some help sticking to it, be sure to read this.

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Madison LaBerge is an Arizona State University sophomore. She loves her...