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It may be free Slurpee day, but those calories will cost you

Hey, boys and girls, it’s free Slurpee day at 7-Eleven stores! To celebrate the company’s sort-of birthday (check the date — it’s 7/11. Get it?) the company is giving away 7.11-ounce Slurpees at participating stores.

But because this is a blog about health we couldn’t let this auspicious occasion pass without letting you know what you’ll be sucking down if you give in to the Slurpee. Most 8-ounce Slurpees weigh at in about 70 calories, which isn’t too bad in the grand scheme of things, provided you don’t pair it with a couple of Twinkies, a bag of Doritos and some Skittles.

Walking at a brisk pace for about 15 minutes should burn that sweetened beverage off. But not all Slurpees are created equal. An 8-ounce Dr Pepper Slurpee is 150 calories.

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For the calories you’re getting nothing, nutrition-wise, in return, because the drinks register zero for any beneficial dietary value.

And watch those sugar grams, especially you guys with diabetes. Most 8-ounce Slurpees in the 70-calorie range have about 17 grams of sugar, and that Dr Pepper version comes in at 41 grams. Ouch. There’s caffeine in some, too — the Mountain Dew Slurpee has 20 milligrams of caffeine. That may not be a lot for those who guzzle coffee all day (a typical 8-ounce cup of coffee has between 100 and 200 milligrams of caffeine), but it may give a buzz to people who are extremely sensitive to the stuff.

We know things like this are tempting, but just because it’s free doesn’t mean you have to indulge. Some 7-Eleven stores carry fresh fruit, which is always a better option. But far be it for us to tell you what to eat. That’s what your conscience should do.


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