Is Coffee Fattening? Discover the Calories in Each Type

Is coffee fattening? Surely not! Read on and find out!
Is Coffee Fattening? Discover the Calories in Each Type
Leonardo Biolatto

Written and verified by the doctor Leonardo Biolatto.

Last update: 07 January, 2023

Coffee isn’t only one of the most consumed drinks around the world, but it also has multiple benefits for physical and mental health. Today we’ll look at whether coffee is fattening and how many calories are hidden in a cup of this delicious beverage. So if you drink coffee every day, keep reading.

One of the great advantages of coffee is that it can be prepared in multiple ways – f rom a black coffee to one with milk (either animal or vegetable). It can be drunk without sweetener to enjoy its bitter taste or you can add sugar, caramel, or whipped cream to make it a little sweeter. These characteristics make it a very versatile beverage for all tastes. Read on to find out whether coffee is fattening.

How many calories does coffee have?

Several studies have confirmed that caffeine consumed both as a beverage and as a supplement helps people to perform 5% better in sports. Thanks to being a stimulant drink, it’s capable of affecting the nervous system, allowing the release of hormones and promoting the mobilization of body fat. However, when taken on a regular basis, it can make you put on up to 3 kilos per year .

The calories in a cup of coffee dissolved in water and without any additives are practically nil. According to the Spanish Nutrition Foundation (FEN), 100 grams (4 oz) of coffee is equivalent to 4 kcal. However, when milk, sugar, candies, and other toppings are added, things change, and controlling its consumption becomes key. A balanced diet is indispensable for a healthy diet and avoiding large intakes of sugar is crucial.

When you eat more calories than you consume, you gain weight. And if you consume more than you eat, you lose weight. Because of this, it’s important to know how many calories are hidden in those delicious lattes.

We should take into account that, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), a man with moderate physical activity needs an average of between 2000 and 2500 kcal daily  and women between 1500 and 2000 kcal.

Why is coffee fattening? These are the calories of each type

Cafetera para el hogar.
Coffee makers have popularized the beverage and made it available in any home.

Currently, thanks to the many kinds of coffee makers on the market, this beverage has managed to reach new levels of consumption, due to the ease of preparing delicious varieties. For example, automatic coffee makers allow to you prepare many special types of coffee with frothy milk.

And although it’s true that consuming several cups of coffee with milk and sugar every day can have an impact on body weight, once in a while there’s nothing wrong with it. Next, we’ll explain how many calories are in each type of coffee to help you be more conscious of your eating and drinking habits.

1. Coffee with full-cream milk

We already know that 100 grams (4 oz) of coffee is equivalent to 4 kcal, but now we have to add the calories of a 250 ml glass of milk. If it’s whole milk it would be 150 kcal; if it’s semi-skimmed milk it would be 108 kcal; and if it’s skimmed milk it would be 88 kcal. In addition, if coffee is sweetened with a sugar sachet of 8 or 10 grams, between 32 and 40 kcal should be added and, if two are used, up to 80 kcal.

If you decide to add condensed milk, you should take into account that 50 ml of this delicacy contains 160 kcal. Therefore, drinking a 250 ml cup of coffee made with full-cream milk and two sachets of sugar means the consumption of 234 kcal per cup. To gain one kilo of weight drinking coffee you need 7200 calories.

2. Coffee with vegetable milk

A coffee.
Vegetable milk can provide coffee with a lower number of calories than full-cream milk.

Using vegetable milk to prepare coffee usually means a lower caloric intake than by using full-cream milk. In addition, it’s a great vegan alternative, as in automatic coffee machines it  can also be frothed up and give you a delicious cup. In general, any vegetable milk can achieve practically the same results as full-cream milk.

A 250 ml cup of almond milk has approximately 60 kcal, a cup of oat milk, 120 kcal; and in a cup of soy milk there are 135 kcal. So, if no sugar is used, making coffee with vegetable milk is a better option to decrease caloric intake.

3. Café cortado

In Spain, they serve café cortado, which only has a little evaporated milk and the rest is water. However, in spite of the fact that there are fewer calories from the milk, this type of beverage is usually taken with a sachet of sugar. Therefore, a cup of 60 ml could contain up to 50 kcal.

It’s important to highlight that some studies have investigated the efficacy of caffeine to accelerate the metabolic process . This means that when drinking espresso coffee or café cortado without sugar, its possible to take advantage of all its benefits.

In conclusion, is coffee fattening?

Although a cup of 100 grams (4 oz) of black coffee in water without sugar only contains 4 kcal, this isn’t the case with coffee with milk and sweetened in some way. So, maybe a single cup of coffee with full-cream milk and sugar once in a while isn’t too alarming, but it can create problems in people who drink several a day.

So, answering the initial question, coffee isn’t fattening, but the way it’s prepared to make it taste better can be. Because of this, if you’re trying to follow a diet, drinking coffee with milk and sugar every day won’t be a good idea if you’re trying to lose weight.

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The contents of this publication are for informational purposes only. At no time can they serve to facilitate or replace the diagnoses, treatments, or recommendations of a professional. Consult with your trusted specialist if you have any doubts and seek their approval before beginning any procedure.