Summer time is prime time for cocktails! Warm temps, pool parties, BBQs, summer evenings and vacations lend themselves to folks indulging in a cocktail or two. And although refreshing and tasty, calories in cocktails can get you into trouble when it comes to weight loss and management.

After all, you worked so hard for that bikini summer body, don’t let a colorful drink with a cute umbrella derail your efforts. No need to skip the party train, one just needs to be mindful of choices and the number of drinks you are having.

It’s important to know what you are getting yourself into, as most beverages don’t have that handy nutrition label on the glass. So let’s see some common cocktail calories.

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Calories in Cocktails

Piña Coladas/Frozen Margaritas/Daiquiris

Perfect summer drinks, frozen, slushy, cool and refreshing but these cocktails are sugar bombs from all of the juices/mixes and a single drink can range anywhere between 500-650 plus calories. Have two of these and you’ve literally just about drank all your calories for the day.

Long Island Ice Tea

Ok, so we’ll forgo the umbrellas and fun colors, for a good ole refreshing “tea”. Well… the combinations of the five liquors used in the drink add up to at least 400 calories or more for one cocktail.

Sangria

This has got to be better, there’s fruit in it right? Well…The wine along with the fruits and other liquors that made be used (such as brandy) and juices if any (depending on the recipe), can turn a good choice into a poor one rather quickly.

Gin and Tonic

So you think, this can’t be bad, and it’s cool and fizzy. Most tonic waters are made with high fructose corn syrup and that adds up to sugars and calories. A single cocktail can have more than 200 calories.

Beer

Beers are tricky when it comes to calories and sugars. Some can have almost 200 calories a pop!

calories in cocktails_2

Mixed Drinks

So, you decide against the fruit and fancy and go for a Rum and Coke or maybe a Cape Cod (Vodka and Cranberry), but juices and sodas equal added sugar and calories. A serving of a spirit such as gin, vodka, tequila, rum is 1.5 oz and can have anywhere from 80 to 150 plus calories. Add some juice or soda and you’re looking at minimum of 200 plus calories.

So what are you to do when ordering at the bar? As with everything, be mindful of your choices. Smarter choices for cocktails are a single spirit with seltzer or club soda and fresh fruit, a light beer or glass of wine.

Try to alternate your cocktails with plain water to stay hydrated and reduce the urge to immediately say, “I’ll have another”. Overindulgence of cocktails not only has the liquid calories add up, but often we eat/snack to compensate and it’s often not the right choices. For more advice on avoiding unhealthy snacking, check out these 5 fool-proof tips for breaking bad snacking habits.

Couple sugary drinks with poor food choices and it’s a recipe for not feeling bloated and overall not well for the next day or two. Know your limits friends, drink responsibly and indulge in a cocktail or two not a binge.

Cheers!

Sources:

http://rethinkingdrinking.niaaa.nih.gov/toolsresources/caloriecalculator.asp

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