Are you trying to watch your sugar intake but still want to enjoy a drink or two?
You’re not alone. Many people are looking for low-sugar options when it comes to alcohol.
Luckily, there are plenty of options out there. From clear liquors like vodka and gin to tequila and whiskey, there are many types of alcohol that are low in sugar and calories.
In this article, we’ll explore the best low-sugar alcohol options and give you tips on how to enjoy them without adding extra sugar.
So, grab a drink (or don’t) and let’s dive in!
What Type Of Alcohol Has The Least Sugar?
When it comes to alcohol, the type with the least amount of sugar is clear liquor. Vodka, gin, and tequila are all great options for those looking to cut back on sugar.
Vodka is the lowest in calories, with only 100 calories in a 50-milliliter shot. Whiskey, gin, and tequila are also low in calories, with about 110 calories per shot.
It’s important to note that while these liquors are low in sugar and calories, it’s the mixers that can add extra sugar to your drink. Fruit juices and fizzy drinks like coke are popular mixers but can add a lot of sugar without you even realizing it.
To keep your sugar intake low, try topping your clear liquors with soda water or adding a squeeze of fresh lemon or lime. You can also use light tonic water as a mixer to help keep those sugar levels at their lowest.
Why Sugar In Alcohol Matters
Sugar in alcohol matters because it can significantly increase the calorie and sugar content of your drink. While alcohol itself is made from natural sugar and starch, the fermentation and distillation processes involved in making different types of alcohol can result in varying amounts of calories and sugar.
For example, a six-pack of cider (4.5%, 500ml can) consumed over the course of a week can add an extra 1,260 calories and 126 grams or 32 teaspoons of sugar to your intake. Similarly, a bottle of white wine (12.5%, 750ml) contains 564 calories and 22.5 grams or 4.5 teaspoons of sugar.
Moreover, many popular mixers like fruit juices and fizzy drinks contain high amounts of sugar, which can further increase the calorie and sugar content of your drink. Cocktails that contain syrups, juices, and other high-calorie mixers can be particularly harmful as they mask the sharp flavor of alcohol, making it easier to drink more than intended.
Consuming excess sugar can also be harmful to your health, leading to weight gain, increased risk of heart disease, and other health problems. Therefore, it’s important to be mindful of the sugar content in your alcoholic beverages and choose low-sugar options whenever possible. Opting for clear liquors like vodka, gin, and tequila and using soda water or light tonic water as mixers can help keep your sugar intake low while still allowing you to enjoy a drink or two in moderation.
Clear Liquors: Vodka And Gin
When it comes to clear liquors, vodka and gin are the top choices for those looking to reduce their sugar intake. According to registered dietitian Amy Shapiro, these liquors have the fewest calories and the least amount of sugar. This means that they are easier for our bodies to metabolize and may result in less intense hangovers for some people.
A shot of vodka contains about 64 calories, while a shot of gin contains about 73 calories. While both are low in calories, it’s important to note that the mixers and additions can quickly pile on the sugar and calories. Therefore, it’s important to be mindful of what you’re adding to your cocktail.
If you’re looking for a low-calorie mixed drink, a vodka soda is a great option. A 7.5-ounce vodka soda has about 133 calories and 0 grams of carbs, making it one of the lowest-calorie mixed drinks available.
When it comes to choosing a low-sugar option, sticking with hard spirits like gin, vodka, whiskey, and rum is your best bet. Wine is also a good option, but it’s best to go for a red or a dry white. Beer can be high in calories, so it’s important to choose your tipple wisely.
Tequila: A Surprising Low-Sugar Option
Tequila is a surprising low-sugar option when it comes to alcohol. In fact, it contains less than 0.5 grams of sugar per liter, making it one of the lowest sugar alcohols available. This is significantly lower than other popular alcoholic beverages such as beer, wine, and vodka.
A shot of tequila contains approximately 42 grams of alcohol, which is roughly 1.5 ounces. One serving of tequila contains no carbohydrates because it has been distilled, eliminating all naturally occurring sugars and there are no added sugars in general. This makes tequila a great option for those looking for a low-carb and low-sugar drink.
It’s important to note that not all types of tequila are created equal when it comes to sugar content. A pure Agave tequila (100 percent Agave) has less sugar than other types of tequila. Because it is distilled, there are only 69 calories per ounce and no carbohydrates in it.
Research on mice shows that consuming the agave tequila plant can increase calcium absorption and improve bone health. However, for humans, it’s doubtful that drinking tequila can actually help treat calcium deficiency or bone conditions like osteoporosis.
Overall, tequila is considered a healthier choice than other alcoholic drinks because it has less sugar and calories. Unlike most distilled spirits, tequila also has low levels of impurities like methanol or fusel oil when consumed in reasonable amounts. If you want to reap the benefits of drinking tequila, its label must read “100% agave plant” or “100 percent blue agave plant.” It’s because these types of liquor are made with a natural sweetener called fructose or agavins that won’t raise your blood sugar levels as well as triglyceride levels or blood fat.
Tequila is a great option for those looking to cut back on sugar while still enjoying a drink. Just remember to watch your mixers and stick to pure Agave tequilas for the lowest sugar content.
Whiskey: A Classic Choice With Minimal Sugar
Whiskey is a classic choice for those looking for a low-sugar option. However, not all whiskey is created equal in terms of sugar content. It’s important to note that not all whiskey can be trusted to be carb and/or sugar-free. This is because there are no nutrition labels on the bottles as spirits are regulated by the ATF and not the FDA.
The good news is that certain types of whiskey are safe for a no-carb/no-sugar diet. The process of making grain-based spirits involves cooking the grains to turn their carbohydrates into sugars. These sugars are then eaten by yeast, which releases alcohol. The liquid is then distilled, where only the relevant alcohol vapors pass through and are captured. All of the “bad” stuff – carbs and sugars – are either eaten by the yeast or left in the still.
So, which whiskeys are safe for a low-sugar diet? The Manhattan is a classic low-sugar drink mixed with whiskey, vermouth, and bitters. It can be served with any whiskey, but many experts prefer rye. It’s typically served up with a cherry garnish.
Low-Sugar Mixers And Cocktails
If you’re looking for low-sugar mixers and cocktails, there are plenty of options available. Here are some ideas to get you started:
1. Vodka Soda – This classic drink is simple and refreshing. Mix 5 parts vodka with 1 part soda water, and add a slice of lemon or lime for extra flavor. This drink has only 133 calories and 0 grams of carbs.
2. Gin and Tonic – Gin is a low-calorie spirit, and tonic water can be a good mixer as long as you choose a low-sugar option. Look for tonic waters that are labeled “light” or “diet” to keep your sugar intake in check.
3. Whiskey Sour – This cocktail is made with whiskey, lemon juice, and a touch of sugar syrup. To make it low-sugar, use a sugar-free syrup or skip the syrup altogether and rely on the tartness of the lemon juice to balance the whiskey.
4. Margarita – Tequila is a low-sugar spirit, but traditional margaritas can be loaded with sugar from sweetened lime juice and triple sec. To make a low-sugar margarita, use fresh lime juice and skip the triple sec. You can also add a splash of orange juice or agave nectar for sweetness without too much added sugar.
5. Moscow Mule – This cocktail is made with vodka, ginger beer, and lime juice. Ginger beer can be high in sugar, so look for low-sugar options or use ginger ale instead. You can also swap out the ginger beer for ginger kombucha for an even healthier option.
Remember to enjoy your drinks in moderation, regardless of their sugar content. With these low-sugar mixer and cocktail options, you can still enjoy a night out without sacrificing your health goals.
Tips For Enjoying Low-Sugar Alcohol Responsibly
While clear liquors like vodka and gin are great options for low-sugar alcohol, it’s important to remember to enjoy them responsibly. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your low-sugar drinks:
1. Stick to one or two drinks. Even low-sugar alcohol can add up quickly, so it’s important to keep track of how much you’re drinking.
2. Avoid sugary mixers. As mentioned earlier, mixers like fruit juices and fizzy drinks can add a lot of sugar to your drink. Stick to soda water or light tonic water instead.
3. Don’t drink on an empty stomach. Drinking on an empty stomach can lead to quicker absorption of alcohol, which can increase the risk of negative side effects like hangovers.
4. Stay hydrated. Alcohol can dehydrate you, so it’s important to drink plenty of water throughout the night.
5. Know your limits. Everyone’s tolerance for alcohol is different, so it’s important to know when to stop drinking and when to switch to water or other non-alcoholic beverages.
By following these tips, you can enjoy your low-sugar drinks while still being responsible and mindful of your health.