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The Pumpkin Spice Latte may be a 'fall mood', but be warned: It is not good for you

You may (or may not) know about the high sugar content in the classic Pumpkin Spiced Latte. But how much pumpkin is in the classic "fall mood" drink?

It's not even fall yet and the arrival of those tasty traditional fall flavors is officially here.

Cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove all whipped up is what Starbucks is calling its famous— or infamous, rather—pumpkin spice latte.

Multiple people have expressed their love for the seasonal drink. And loving it means cash.

Data from last fall shows the pumpkin spice industry is a more than $600 million dollar market. Dunkin' Donuts and other restaurants came up with their own versions of the popular drink.

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The "PSL" as it's now dubbed, has become a classic item that hits menus at the turn of the summer months.

That classic, however, is loaded with sugar.

Not to ruin your favorite drink, but a post on the local American Heart Association's Facebook page warns: "don't let the name fool you," there's "rarely any actual pumpkin" in the drinks. There is, however, lots of calories.


Rebecca Buerkle with the Arkansas Chapter of the Heart Association that although there's a pumpkin taste, there's little-to-no pumpkin and full of something else.

"While it brings in that pumpkin flavor, it also has about four tablespoons of sugar."       

It's true. The venti Starbucks drink with no whipped cream contains 62 grams of sugar and only a small amount of pumpkin puree. Most of the flavor comes from the artificially flavored syrup.

The Dunkin' Donuts version of the drink? No pumpkin at all.

The Heart Association said they don't want to ruin the fall experience for you and still want people to enjoy those fall flavors, but also want to remind the public to think about the sugar content.

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It's important to note that a real pumpkin is loaded with ingredients that support heart health.

"The problem with sugar is it can add in calories, which can add in weight and extra weight can lead to a number of problems— including a lot of heart issues," Buerkle said.

"You can still enjoy those flavors, you can still enjoy those indulgences, but be mindful of it when you make those choices."