Diets are hard enough as it is. Now you’re supposed to not only give up your treats and days out at the restaurant indulging in a delicious steak and lobster meal, but you can’t even enjoy a drink every now and then either.
Stop right there. As long as you learn proper portion control and educate yourself on the types of drinks that are lower in calories, you can certainly enjoy a drink or two every now and then and not suffer the "weighty" consequences.
Learning about Alcohol and Calories
A good rule of thumb when it comes to alcohol, though it does not always apply, is that the caloric amount depends on three things:
- The alcoholic percentage
- The mixer used
- The size of the drink
Generally, the higher the percentage of alcohol in any drink, the higher in calories it will be. This is surprisingly for a lot of women on a diet plan, as they have been told that "straight" drinks like vodka and lime or whiskey on the rocks was "okay" to drink as it did not have any calories. Wrong!
As a matter of fact, a bottle of 80-proof vodka (that would be 40% alcohol) as a whopping 64 calories per 1 ounce, and 86-proof vodka (43% alcohol has close to 70 calories in 1 ounce. Throw in the mixer which can also be loaded with calories (juice and sodas are both high in calories since they are full of sugars). Make a large drink, and you can easily be drinking 300-500 calories in one drink!
Low Calorie Mixer Options
For everyone who enjoys the mixed drinks, here are some low calorie mixers to help reduce the amount of calories in that beverage of yours:
- Diet sodas or diet tonic water: 0 calories
- Coffee/tea: 0 calories
- Light lemonade (8 ounces): 5 calories
- Lemon or lime juice (0.5 ounce): 10 calories
- Light cranberry juice (8 ounces): 40 calories
- Light orange juice (8 ounces): 50 calories
- Orange juice (6 ounces): 84 calories
Low Calorie Punches & Cocktails
Yes, you can still enjoy the punches and cocktails, as long as you drink them within reason.
- Mimosa (4 ounces): 75 calories
- Wine spritzer (5 ounces): 100 calories
- Green apple martini (1 ounce of vodka, apple juice, and sour apple): 148 calories
- Spiced cider with rum (8 ounces): 150 calories
- Martini (2.5 ounces): 160 calories
- Rum and diet Coke (8 ounces): 185 calories
Low Calorie Drink Options
If you aren’t into the mixed drinks and prefer beer or wine, there are substitutions that you can make here as well. Light beers are always an easy choice, as they contain the same amount of alcohol but far less calories and typically far less carbohydrates than a standard beer:
- Alcohol-free wine (5 ounces): 20-30 calories
- Ultra-light beer (12 ounces) 64-95 calories
- Light beer (12 ounces): 95-136 calories
- Bloody Mary (5 ounces): 118 calories
- Red wine (5 ounces): 120 calories
- White wine (5 ounces): 120 calories
- Port wine (3 ounces): 128 calories
- Beer (12 ounces): 150-198 calories