3-4 ounces of fortified wine (such as sherry or port) (75-90 calories)
1 ½ ounces of brandy (98 calories)
1 ½ ounces of “hard liquor” (165 calories)
4 fluid ounces margarita (168 calories)
9 fluid ounces Piña Colada (490 calories)
3 ½ fluid ounces whiskey sour (160 calories)
2 fluid ounces daiquiri (112 calories)
Alcohol contains empty calories meaning it has no nutritional value.
Alcohol supplies energy (7 calories/gram).
Drinking a moderate amount means 1 drink a day for women and 2 drinks a day for men.
A big risk that will come from drinking alcohol is the additional calories provided, which may contribute to unwanted weight gain. Alcohol is also known as a discretionary calorie.
The liver can metabolize only a limited amount of alcohol per hour— A healthy, average person can eliminate 1/2 ounce of alcohol per hour. Remember, women and men do not metabolize at the same rate
More than a dozen studies have shown a positive correlation between moderate alcohol consumption and decreased incidence of heart disease. The protective effect of alcohol is the result of increased levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. However, if you don’t drink, the possible benefits don’t outweigh the risks.
If you drink excessively on a regular basis, your nutritional status will become compromised. Alcohol effects every tissue’s nutrient metabolism in different ways.
Other risks that come from drinking too much alcohol include: night blindness, cancers, liver damage, high blood pressure, stroke, pancreatitis, gastrointestinal symptoms, decreased sex hormone production, anemia, and emotional and social problems.
Binge drinking means drinking at least 5 drinks at one time if you are a man and 4 drinks at one time if you are a woman.
Alcohol consumed by a pregnant woman travels through her bloodstream and across the placenta to her baby. The unborn baby’s body can metabolize the alcohol. The alcohol level in the baby is a lot higher than the mother’s which stays in the baby’s blood longer, leading to Fetal Alcohol Syndrome.
Red wine contains polyphenols (antioxidants) protecting the lining of the heart’s blood vessels.
Generally, the lower the proof, the lower the calories.
If you enjoy liqueurs, be careful with portions— the sweet taste adds up calories quickly.
Based on calories alone, the best options of alcohol are light beer, scotch on the rocks, or a glass of dry wine.