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Alcoholic Drinks with the Least Calorie

If you’re on a weight loss journey, you may wonder if you can enjoy an alcoholic beverage, and if so, what are the best alcoholic drinks with the least calories? When you’re in a weight loss phase, every calorie counts, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up drinking alcohol completely.

Most alcoholic drinks contain a significant amount of calories, carbs, and sugar that adds to your daily calorie tally and too much alcohol can increase overeating. Too much can also lead you to feel sluggish, tired, and unmotivated the next day, which can hinder weight loss. Therefore, it’s important to drink in moderation for optimal health and weight loss success, even if you are choosing low calorie drinks. 

Whether you’re winding down after a long week, going on vacation, or celebrating a special occasion, choosing the lowest calorie cocktails can help you stay on track. Here are the 7 best alcoholic drinks with the least calories, all containing less than 150 calories per drink.

1. Vodka soda 

Vodka is one of the lowest-calorie spirits. A vodka soda is one of the alcoholic drinks with the fewest calories. It only contains a few ingredients: vodka, club soda or seltzer, and a splash of fresh lemon, lime, or orange. 

One standard vodka soda with 1.5 oz of vodka contains around 100 calories. The calories are mostly coming from the vodka itself, as club soda and a splash of lime juice don’t add any additional. It’s also very low in sugar, making it less likely to spike your blood sugar. 

2. Spiked seltzer

Alcoholic seltzers like Truly, White Claw, or High Noons are another low-calorie beverage option. Most spiked seltzers top out around 100 calories per can, making them one of the lowest calorie cocktails you can have. 

They also contain very minimal sugar and come in a variety of flavors depending on your mood.

3. White wine spritzer

A white wine spritzer is another light drink option when you’re trying to watch your calorie intake, containing only around 100-120 calories. To make a spritzer, you simply top off a glass of white wine with 1-2 oz of seltzer or club soda. The extra addition of this fizz, which is calorie-free, also hydrates you and can reduce the risk of a hangover.

Moreover, adding this “spritz” helps stretch the portion out, which can slow down your drinking and help you feel more full. It also tastes light and refreshing and is a great cocktail for a hot day or while lounging by the pool.

This is a friendly reminder that a standard serving of wine is 5 ounces, which is often more than many people eyeball into their glass. To help reduce portions of wine, try using a smaller wine glass.

4. Tequila and lime

Like vodka, tequila is a distilled spirit with no carbohydrates or sugar. If you’re a tequila fan, you know that tequila is often combined into sugary, high-calorie cocktails like tequila sunrises that pack several other liquours and sweeteners. 

A simple tequila and lime drink with 1.5 oz of tequila only contains around 90 calories. Add a splash of calorie-free soda water and seltzer, and you have a refreshing, low-cal, sugar-free alcoholic beverage.

Alcoholic Drinks with the Least Calories

5. Light beer

While IPAs and stouts are often loaded with calories (and feel super heavy in your stomach), light beers and light lagers are lower-calorie alternatives. Most light beers, such as Michelob Ultra, contain less than 100 calories and are lower in carbs and sugar than other beers.

Beers also tend to be more filling than some of the other alcoholic drinks on this list, which can lead you to drink less overall.

6. Prosecco

If you love a little bubbly, Prosecco is another good low-cal option. If you’ve never tried Prosecco, it’s essentially Italian champagne, and has a slightly sweeter flavor than traditional French champagne.

A standard serving of Prosecco, which is about 5 ounces, contains about 80-100 calories. This is significantly lower than many other sweet-tasting cocktails, making it an appealing option if you prefer something on the sweeter side. 

It also doesn’t contain any added sugar but is sweet on its own. Because of this, most people don’t feel the need to add any additional mixers. Lastly, Prosecco is typically served in smaller glasses such as flutes, which can help with portion control.

7. Vodka martini

Last but not least, a vodka martini is the final one on our list of alcoholic drinks with the least calories. While it contains more ingredients and is slightly higher in calories than the others, a vodka martini is still a good option if you’re looking for a fancier light cocktail. 

A classic 6-oz vodka martini with 1.5 ounces of vodka and ⅓ ounce of dry vermouth contains around 120 calories. If you want to cut down on the calories further, you can ask for less vermouth, if you don’t mind a stronger-tasting drink.

It’s important to remember this calorie amount is for a vodka martini, not a gin martini, which is the default in some bars when you order a martini. 

Tips to Including Alcohol In Moderation

The decision to include alcohol in your weight loss plan is a personal choice and should be discussed with a registered dietitian or your doctor. If you choose to include alcohol in your weight loss plan, here are a few tips to do so in moderation so it’s less likely to affect your weight loss progress.

Limit to 1-2 drinks 

When you do this, the calorie amount won’t have as much of an effect on your calorie allotment. You’ll feel better the next day and have a lower risk of overeating or making poor choices.

Preserve it for special occasions

In this way, it’s less likely to become a regular occurrence and slow down your progress. Plus, you’ll appreciate it more when you do have it and it’s more intentional. My clients who do this are amazed at how much this mindset change helped them. 

Only have it when it’s something you really like, not just because

Try to avoid drinking just for the sake of doing it, such as when you’re stressed, feel sad, or because others around you are doing it. Ask yourself is it worth it to you in that moment, and if it’s not, skip it.

Ask the bartender to go light on the syrup, added sugar, and juice

These added syrups and sugars are what pack on the extra calories and contribute the most to weight gain. They also can make you feel more crummy the next day, so ask your bartender to refrain from adding these, or at the very least, go lighter on them.

Sip slowly and drink a glass of water in between alcoholic drinks

Sip your cocktails slower – they’re not going anywhere! In addition, drinking a glass of water in between every alcoholic beverage will make you full and force you to slow down. 

Become a morning exerciser

This one sounds unrelated, but hear me out on this one. If you become a morning exerciser, you won’t want to drink much the night before. Alcohol can dehydrate you and negatively impact your sleep and workout performance. Once you have a bad workout and see how much it affects you, you won’t want to do it again!

This is yet another reason why regular exercise can improve your health naturally.

Bottom Line

Embarking on a weight loss journey doesn’t mean you have to completely give up enjoying a drink. With mindful choices and moderation, you can choose the above alcoholic drinks with the least calories to help stay in a calorie deficit.

It doesn’t have to be all-or-nothing when it comes to your weight loss journey. If you don’t care about alcohol, then it’s best to avoid it, but if you want an occasional drink, that’s okay too. Limiting yourself to 1-2 drinks, reserving alcohol for special occasions, and choosing beverages you truly enjoy can help you maintain a healthy balance. 

Finding the right balance for you is what will help make your plan sustainable to achieve permanent weight loss. 

Seeking high-quality, motivating content like this for your readers? Contact me to learn about my writing, reviewing, and nutrition consulting services today.

FAQs

  • Can you drink alcohol and still lose weight? Yes, it’s possible to drink alcohol and still lose weight. However, many alcoholic drinks are high in calories, so sticking to 1-2 drinks and limiting regular consumption is key.
  • What is the lowest-calorie alcoholic drink? The lowest calorie alcoholic drink is a vodka soda, a combination of 1.5 oz of vodka, club soda, and a splash of lemon or lime juice.
  • What is the healthiest alcoholic drink? Red wine, while not the lowest calorie drink, may be the healthiest alcoholic drink. This is because it contains polyphenols like resveratrol, antioxidants that may promote heart health. Moderation is still key, and you can also find resveratrol in grapes, berries, and peanuts without having to consume alcohol.