Are you watching your carb and sugar intake but still want to enjoy a drink?
Good news – there are plenty of options for you! From hard liquors like tequila and whiskey to low-carb beers and wines, there are many choices that won’t derail your diet.
In this article, we’ll explore the world of alcohol and highlight some of the best options for those looking to indulge without the added sugars and carbs.
So sit back, relax, and let’s dive in!
What Alcohol Has No Sugar Or Carbs?
If you’re looking for an alcoholic beverage that won’t add to your carb and sugar intake, there are several options to choose from.
Firstly, pure alcohol like rum, vodka, gin, tequila, and whiskey contains no carbs. This means that you can enjoy a shot of any of these spirits without worrying about your carb or sugar intake.
In addition, wine, light beer, and some cocktails can be relatively low in carbs. For example, Crook and Marker are spiked and sparkling beverages made with organic alcohol and zero sugar. They’re less than 1 gram of net carbs, naturally gluten-free, non-GMO and vegan. This high-end seltzer is made from cassava root, quinoa, amaranth and millet and has no artificial flavors or sweeteners. All of their flavors get their color and sweetness from natural sources.
When it comes to hard liquor with no sugar or carbs, some of the more common types include tequila, whiskey, vodka, gin, rum, and brandy. Because there are no carbs in these liquors, all of the calories come from alcohol. In general, a standard 1.5-ounce shot of any of these spirits has around 100 calories.
Why Sugar And Carbs Matter When It Comes To Alcohol
While pure alcohol itself doesn’t contain any carbs or sugar, many alcoholic beverages do. Beer, wine, and cocktails often contain added sugars and carbohydrates. This is why it’s important to pay attention to the type of alcohol you consume if you’re watching your carb and sugar intake.
For example, beer can be high in carbs due to the grains used in the brewing process. A 12-ounce serving of regular beer can contain around 12-15 grams of carbs. Wine can also be high in sugar, with some varieties containing up to 10 grams of sugar per glass. Cocktails can be especially high in sugar and carbs, with many containing sugary mixers like soda or juice.
When it comes to hard liquor, it’s important to consider what you mix it with. Many mixers like soda or juice can be high in sugar and carbs, which can quickly add up. Instead, opt for zero-calorie mixers like club soda or diet tonic water.
It’s also important to remember that while sugar alcohols may be a popular alternative to sugar in some foods and drinks, they can still contribute calories and may have negative effects on digestion if consumed in large quantities.
Hard Liquors With No Sugar Or Carbs
If you’re specifically looking for hard liquors with no sugar or carbs, there are several options to choose from. Tequila, whiskey, vodka, gin, rum, and brandy are all examples of hard liquors that contain zero carbs. This means that you can enjoy a shot of any of these spirits without worrying about your carb or sugar intake.
It’s important to note that because these liquors contain no carbs, all of the calories come from alcohol. In general, a standard 1.5-ounce shot of any of these spirits has around 100 calories. However, it’s important to stay within the recommended range of moderate drinking for overall health. According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, moderate drinking for people assigned female at birth of legal drinking age is up to one drink per day, and up to two drinks per day for people assigned male at birth of legal drinking age.
When it comes to enjoying these hard liquors, it’s important to watch out for mixers that may contain sugar or carbs. Fruit juices and fizzy drinks such as coke are popular additions but are likely to add sugar to your alcohol drink without you even noticing. Your best bet is to top your hard spirits with soda water, add a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime, or use light tonic water to help you keep those sugar levels at their lowest.
Low-carb Beer Options
If you’re a beer lover, you might be wondering if there are any low-carb options available. The good news is that there are some beers that are relatively low in carbs and won’t add too much to your daily carb limit.
Miller Lite is a popular option for those looking for a low-carb beer. With just 3.2 grams of carbs per bottle, it’s a great choice for those who want to enjoy a cold beer without worrying about their carb intake. Another option is Miller 64, which has only 2.4 grams of carbs per can.
If you’re looking for something with a bit more flavor, Michelob Ultra is another popular low-carb beer. It has just 2.6 grams of carbs per bottle and is a great choice for those who want to enjoy a light beer without sacrificing taste.
Corona Premier is another good option for those who want a low-carb beer that still has plenty of flavor. It has only 2.6 grams of carbs per bottle and is a great choice for those who want to enjoy a cold beer on a hot day.
Finally, if you’re looking for something a bit different, hard seltzers like White Claw and Truly are also low in carbs and sugar. They’re made with sparkling water, alcohol, and natural flavors, and typically have around 2 grams of carbs per can.
Wine Choices For Those Watching Their Sugar Intake
If you’re a wine lover who’s watching your sugar intake, fear not! There are plenty of wine options that are low in sugar and carbs.
Dry red wines tend to be the best choice for those watching their sugar intake. High-quality pinot noir is considered the healthiest wine due to its high antioxidant activity and low sugar content. Other low-sugar red wines include cabernet sauvignon, merlot, malbec, red zinfandel, and syrah. These wines typically contain 1-2 grams of sugar per serving.
Dry white wines like sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, Italian pinot grigio, brut, Chianti, Bordeaux, tempranillo, Sangiovese and Nebbiolo are also relatively low in sugar and carbs. German Riesling is another option with around 1.4 grams of sugar per serving.
It’s important to note that dessert wines tend to have the highest sugar content of any wines. Clocking in at seven to nine percent residual sugar, they can contain up to 8 grams of sugar per serving. If you’re looking for a sweet wine, opt for a Port or Sauternes with around 8 grams of sugar per serving.
Ultimately, the fermentation period plays a big role in the sugar content of wine. The longer the wine ferments, the less natural sugar is left over. So if you’re looking for a low-sugar option, choose wines that have undergone longer fermentation periods.
Mixers To Avoid And Alternatives To Try
While pure alcohol contains no carbs, the mixers you add to your drink can significantly increase your sugar and carb intake. Here are some mixers to avoid and alternatives to try:
1. Juice: Fruit juice is high in sugar and can quickly add up your carb intake. Avoid using juice as a mixer and try using sugar-free or low-sugar alternatives like sparkling water or diet sodas instead.
2. Syrups: Simple syrup, honey, and other sweeteners are high in sugar and carbs. To avoid them, use sugar-free syrups or opt for natural sweeteners like stevia or monk fruit.
3. Regular soda: Regular soda is loaded with sugar and should be avoided if you’re trying to cut down on carbs. Instead, try using diet soda or sugar-free flavored sparkling water as a mixer.
4. Tonic water: While tonic water contains less sugar than regular soda, it still has a considerable amount of carbs. Try using diet tonic water or sparkling water instead.
5. Sweet wines: Sweet wines like Port, Moscato, and Demi Sec are high in sugar and should be avoided if you’re trying to cut down on carbs. Instead, opt for dry wines like Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Noir.
6. Heavy cream: Heavy cream is high in fat and calories and should be avoided if you’re watching your weight. Instead, try using almond milk or coconut milk as a low-carb alternative.
7. Flavored syrups: Flavored syrups like caramel or vanilla are high in sugar and carbs. Try using sugar-free flavored syrups instead.
Tips For Enjoying Alcohol While Maintaining A Low-carb, Low-sugar Diet
If you’re following a low-carb, low-sugar diet but still want to enjoy an occasional drink, there are a few tips to keep in mind:
1. Stick to clear spirits: As mentioned earlier, clear spirits like vodka, gin, tequila, and rum are all carb and sugar-free. When choosing mixers, opt for sugar-free options like soda water, sparkling water, or diet tonic water.
2. Avoid sweet cocktails: Many cocktails are loaded with sugar and carbs from mixers like fruit juice or simple syrup. If you do want to indulge in a cocktail, choose ones made with low-carb ingredients like fresh herbs, citrus juice, or unsweetened coconut milk.
3. Watch your beer intake: While there are some low-carb beer options on the market, they still contain some carbs. If you do choose to drink beer, limit yourself to one or two and opt for light beer over regular beer.
4. Choose dry wines: Dry wines like Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Chardonnay are lower in carbs than sweeter wines like Moscato or Riesling. Stick to one or two glasses and pair with low-carb snacks like nuts or cheese.
5. Stay hydrated: Alcohol can dehydrate you, so make sure to drink plenty of water before, during, and after drinking. This can also help curb your appetite and prevent overeating.
Remember that while it’s possible to enjoy alcohol while following a low-carb, low-sugar diet, moderation is key. Make sure to track your intake and adjust your food choices accordingly to stay on track with your health goals.