While alcoholic drinks are often referred to as “empty calories,” they aren’t all absolute disasters for your diet. My favorite motto with regards to healthy living is “all things in moderation.” I feel that if you live trying to deprive yourself you will only be miserable, and almost definitely end up eating — and drinking — more than you should out of resentment.
So, if you find that you need to have a drink or two to wind down at home, or as part of your weekend socializing, here are five tips from the folks over at WebMD:
1. Alternate alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks to save calories. Sometimes the difficulty in moderating your drinking is the amount of time you spend in a social event. You finish your first drink, but you plan on hanging out for another couple of hours. The best way to handle the situation is to have non-alcoholic drinks in between, and preferably non-caloric. Try some sparkling water with a with a twist of lime, or even a splash of cranberry.
2. Choose wine, light beer, or simple cocktails made with low-calorie mixers. There are trendy mix drinks out now that pack an incredible amount of calories. Keep it simple. Wine and light beer will usually set you back less than 150 calories.
3. Skip the mixer. Alcohol is already good for a sugar spike. And if you add mixers they often increase sugar and calories exponentially. Instead, choose soda water or a twist of lemon or lime.
4. Dilute your drink. Wine spritzers, which is wine diluted with sparkling water, is a great way of reducing calories. You can also order a vodka tonic or with a splash of cranberry instead of the full amount of orange juice or regular soda.
5. Have a game plan. If you decide in advance what your strategy is, you will be much less likely to slip up.
Here’s a quick video with more drinking tips: