Here’s a quick primer so you can make some informed choices:
- A standard drink is 1.5 ounces of hard liquor, 5 ounces of wine, or 12 ounces of beer.
- 12 ounces of beer has 153 calories and 13.9 grams of alcohol
- 12 ounces of lite beer has 103 calories and 11 grams of alcohol
- 5 ounces red wine has 125 calories and 15.6 grams of alcohol
- 5 ounces of white wine has 121 calories and 15.1 grams of alcohol
- 1 1/2 ounces (a jigger) of 80 proof (40% alcohol) liquor has 97 calories and 14 grams of alcohol
- Alcohol has 7 calories per gram but doesn’t fill you up the way food does, so you can drink a lot and not feel stuffed.
- Alcohol lowers your inhibitions and your resolve not to eat everything at the buffet table often flies right out the window.
- Eating something before drinking can help blunt alcohol’s intoxicating effects.
- Drinking light beer rather than regular saves about 50 calories a bottle.
- Mixed drinks and fancy drinks significantly up the calories. For instance,
- A frozen margarita has about 45 calories an ounce
- A plain martini, no olives or lemon twist, has about 61 calories an ounce
- An 8-ounce white Russian made with light cream has 715 calories.
- The alcohol, heavy cream, eggs, and sugar in a cup of eggnog has about 343 calories and 19 grams of fat
- Mulled wine, a combination of red wine, sugar/honey, spices, orange and lemon peel has about 210 to 300 calories per 5 ounces, depending on how much sweetener is added.
- Watch your mixers — per ounce club soda has no calories, tonic has10, classic coke has 12, Canada Dry ginger ale has 11, orange juice has 15, and cranberry juice has 16.
- And, if you’re toasting to health and happiness in the New Year with champagne – it’s a comparative caloric bargain at about 19 calories an ounce! To your health!
My very best wishes for a very happy and healthy New Year.
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