The calories, carbs, and fats in beverages can sabotage the best intentions to lose or maintain weight. That’s because we tend to be unaware of just how fattening some beverages really are.
Discover the Facts
The following list presents the calories, carbs, and fats found in standard servings of both alcohol and non-alcoholic beverages.
|Alcoholic Beverage||Calories||Carbs (grams)||Fats (grams)||Sodium (mg)|
|Non-Alcoholic Beverage||Calories||Carbs (grams)||Fats (grams)||Sodium (mg)|
|Apple juice (unsweetened)||117||28.96||.273||10|
|Grape juice (unsweetened)||155||37.84||.202||13.6|
|Grapefruit juice (unsweetened)||94||22.13||.247||2.5|
|Milk (2% fat)||122||11.41||4.807||115|
|Orange juice (unsweetened)||112||26.84||.149||4|
|Tangerine juice (unsweetened)||125||29.88||.098||2.5|
*Distilled spirits include rum, vodka, whiskey, gin, tequila, bourbon, etc. Source of data: U.S. Dept Ag (USDA). Food Composition Databases.
It’s obvious that most alcohol beverages have fewer calories than most non-alcohol beverages. However, some people are still concerned about gaining weight from drinking alcohol. But alcohol beverages contain no fat and are very low in carbohydrates. Additionally, it appears that the “effective” calories in alcohol are substantially lower than the numbers listed.
For whatever reason, numerous research studies suggest that drinking alcohol tends not to increase weight. In addition, among women, it is often associated with slight losses in weight. That’s even better news than the figures listed above would suggest.
References: Calories, Carbs, and Fats in Beverages
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- Cordain, L., et al. Influence of moderate daily wine consumption upon body weight regulation and metabolism in healthy free living males. J Am Coll Nut, 1997, 16(2), 134-139.
- Hellerstedt, W. L., et al. The association between alcohol intake and adiposity in the general population. Am J Epidem, 1990, 132(4), 594-611.
- Istvan, J., et al. The relationship between patterns of alcohol consumption and body weight, Int J Epidem, 1995, 24(3), 543-546.
- Jequier, E. Alcohol intake and body weight: a paradox. Am J Clin Nut, 1999, 69, 173-174.
- Kahn, H. S., et al. Stable behaviors associated with adults’ 10-year change in body mass index and the likelihood of gain at the waist. Am J Pub Health, 1997, 87(5), 747-754.
- Klesges, R. C., et al. Effects of alcohol intake on resting energy expenditure in young women social drinkers. Am J Clin Nut, 1994, 59, 805-809.
- Landis, W. Alcohol and energy intake. Am J Clin Nutrition, 1995, 62(suppl.), 11015-11068.
- Liu, S., et al. A prospective study of alcohol intake and change in body weight among US adults. Am J Clin Nut, 1994, 140(10), 912-920.
- Mannisto, E., et al. Reported alcohol intake, diet and body mass index in male smokers. Eur J Clin Nut, 1996, 50, 239-245.
- Mannisto, S., et al. Alcohol beverage drinking, diet and body mass index in a cross-national survey, Eur J Clin Nut, 1997, 151, 326-332.
- Prentice, A. M. Alcohol and obesity. Int J Obesity, 1995, 19(Suppl. 5), S44-S50.
- USDA Food Composition Databases.