What Are Some Low-Calorie Alcoholic Drinks?


Quick Answer

Generally-speaking, wine, light beer and hard liquor are good for drinkers seeking lower-calorie options. Any drink that avoids high-sugar or otherwise high-calorie mixers is a good choice.

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Full Answer

Wine has the lowest number of calories per standard unit of alcohol, with a 5-ounce glass of most wines containing 100 calories. Hard liquors such as vodka or scotch are also lower in calories, with around 104 calories per 1.5-ounce shot. Drinkers should take care, however, because many alcoholic drinks are sweetened with sugar, which adds calories. Additionally, given its lower volume-to-alcohol ratio, hard liquor often goes down more quickly or easily than does beer or wine. Hard liquor should be mixed with zero-calorie mixers such as club soda or tonic water in order to make it last longer.

Light beer is also relatively low-calorie, weighing in at 108 calories per 12-ounce serving. Michelob Ultra and other "ultra light" beers are marketed to drinkers seeking lower calories. Michelob Ultra contains 95 calories per 12-ounce serving. Bars and restaurants often serve beer in larger 16- or even 20-ounce servings, so drinkers who are counting calories should be careful about portion size, which is one of the biggest issues with the caloric content of alcohol, as it is easy to consume more alcohol, and thus more calories, than intended.

Poor choices for those seeking low-calorie alcoholic beverages include higher-alcohol "craft" beers, which often contain higher amounts of alcohol and thus more calories. Sugary mixers such as orange juice and cola can also add large numbers of calories to beverages.

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