Calories in alcohol

Did you know that most of the calories in alcoholic beverages come from the alcohol itself? Alcohol contains almost as much energy as fat does.

A good rule of thumb for determining the calorie content of an alcoholic beverage is that the stronger and sweeter it is, the higher its calorie content. Non-alcoholic wines, beers and ciders are far lighter options than their alcoholic equivalents.

Non-alcoholic beverages have fewer calories, but plenty of flavour

Many people believe that lighter beverages have a dry taste. However, non-alcoholic wines typically have a light and sweet taste, as sugar is used to balance their flavour. In spite of this, non-alcoholic wines contain a relatively low amount of energy.

An ordinary dry or medium-sweet white wine with an alcohol content of 12.5-13.5% contains about 70-80 calories per decilitre. The same amount of non-alcoholic white wine has only about 10 calories, even though it has as much sugar as a medium-sweet wine. The difference between non-alcoholic and alcoholic wines may be even more dramatic, as some red wines contain as much as 17% alcohol.

The same is true of beers and ciders. A strong lager with 7.5% alcohol contains around 60 calories per decilitre, while the same amount of non-alcoholic lager only contains 20 calories. A 4.5% cider has about 60 calories per decilitre, while a non-alcoholic cider has only around 10 kcal.

Tips for lighter living

Alcohol can multiply the amount of energy in a meal. To start cutting down on calories, you should pay attention to the number of alcohol portions consumed in one sitting and the frequency of alcohol consumption or switch from alcoholic to non-alcoholic beverages, for example. Thanks to high-quality low-alcohol and non-alcoholic beverages, you don’t need to compromise on tasty pairings of foods and beverages. Even a small change can help weight management and improve health. You can use Addictionlink's calorie calculator to check the energy content of different beverages.

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