The temptation of patio cocktails, happy hours and weeknight beverages at barbecues are around every corner – no need to avoid them, outsmart them!
Many of us spend our days resisting one caloric temptation after another, from avoiding a second serving at dinner to saying no to dessert. But when cocktail hour rolls around, we throw back the booze, perhaps wary of a hangover, but not wary enough of the empty calories we’re consuming.
The sad truth is alcohol is high in calories, containing 7 calories per gram, more than both protein and carbohydrates. These calories are nutritionally void – they do not give us energy, build muscle or make our stomachs feel full and satisfied. By consuming alcohol, we are also delaying our bodies from burning fat as our bodies’ process alcohol before food.
We cannot change these facts, but we can mitigate the damage. Amour Creole is providing a two-pronged approach to enjoy summer celebrations while not sacrificing our beach bodies.
Lesson 1: Less alcohol = fewer calories. If you follow our tips below, you likely won’t even notice the missing calories – until you check your waistline in the mirror.
- Drink a glass of water between each cocktail. Water will keep you hydrated, slow down your
alcohol consumption and even save you money at a bar or restaurant.
- Add extra ice. Your drink will keep colder and fresher longer and the extra ice will also dilute the
- Eat before you drink. Food will slow down alcohol absorption and may prevent poor choices
down the road – like 3 a.m. pizza binges. Alcohol increases cravings for more alcohol and
high-calorie foods. Alcohol also weakens our inhibitions, so we might just follow that craving.
- Have a game plan. Decide before you arrive at happy hour what you will drink and eat. With a
plan in place, you are less apt to be swayed by advertisements for calorie-laden piña coladas.
- Play it safe. If you don’t know what ingredients are in the beverage mixers, or can’t control the
ingredients, a glass of wine or light beer is likely your best choice.
Lesson 2: Omit unnecessary calories. Since alcohol is high in calories, avoid adding extra calories by abstaining from high-caloric juices and mixers.
- Substitute low-calorie diet juices for regular juices and save significant calories. For example, a
vodka cranberry juice with diet cranberry juice has 75 calories vs. about 193 calories found in
the original recipe. Most grocery stores now sell half-calorie juices which are partially sweetened
- Use diet tonic when making a gin or vodka tonic and save about 110 calories.
- Always use fresh limes and lemons as opposed to syrups or sweet and sour mix. Muddled fresh
fruit is also a great replacement for syrups. Your drink will not only be more nutritious and have
fewer calories; you will likely think the fresh fruit makes for a tastier cocktail.
- Soda water makes for an excellent mixer – zero calories and lots of fizzy fun.
- Avoid heavy liquors like coffee liqueur, chocolate liqueur and cream based Irish whiskey.
- Flavored vodka can be a great substitute for high calorie martinis. Try chocolate favored vodka
on ice with some mashed berries.
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