Alcoholic beverages containing the fewest calories are light beer, wine and cocktails with low-calorie mixers. A serving of light beer or distilled spirits such as rum, bourbon, gin or vodka, is just under 100 calories. White or red wine is in the 120- to 125-calorie range.
Drinking a large glass of plain or sparkling water before consuming alcohol is one way to avoid overindulging. Another strategy is to order cocktails mixed with low-calorie mixers, such as club soda, diet soda, tea, unsweetened citrus juice, light juices or sugar-free syrups. Another option is enjoying spirits served over ice cubes without any mixer.
Moderation is the key to avoiding gaining extra weight from drinking alcoholic beverages. A regular beer contains about 146 calories per serving. Each beer consumed greatly increases caloric intake, with two beers amounting to almost 300 calories. Cocktails often contain hidden calories due to the high amount of calories contained in the mixers. For example, many cocktails include mixers such as orange juice, cranberry juice, grape juice, lemonade and milk. Each of these beverages has more than 100 calories per usual serving. When they're added to distilled spirits, they can double the amount of calories in one drink. The same applies to cocktails containing two or more spirits.