Getting ready for a big (or small) New Year’s Eve always gives me a little bit of anxiety. Going out with friends is amazing and one of my favorite things to do, but there’s only so many places you can go that don’t push you to spend tons of money and calories on drinks!
It’s so interesting how the tides have turned and I’ve grown past my college ‘just going out to the bar’ days. I have nothing against drinking, and you can definitely do it in a healthy way, but I’ve changed how and how much I intake now that I’m living a healthier lifestyle. 🙂
Again, you CAN have a few cocktails and not ruin your healthy lifestyle…Some research has indicated that drinking in moderation can be heart healthy by lowering blood pressure, helping circulatory blood flow and increasing the HDL (aka “good” cholesterol). Keep in mind “moderation” is the key word here. And it means 1 drink per day for women, 2 per day for men.
- Always drink water between each cocktail, sticking to a 1:1 ratio.
- Avoid pre-made mixes and always use fresh squeezed juices – this helps reduce added sugars!
- Limit to no more than 2-3 cocktails a night, only a couple times a week.
- Watch your drink size and keep it to 8oz or less. Watch out for those fishbowl-sized cocktails!
- Avoid simple syrup (it’s basically just a code name for sugar).
- Be sure to eat a healthy dinner before you enjoy your favorite cocktails.
Recently, Popsugar shared a post about what it takes to burn off your cocktails and it was definitely enlightening! Did you know it takes almost an hour and a half to burn off those three margaritas that were so easy to drink?
So what can you drink!? I’ve put together a short list of five easy drinks to purchase or make at home that you won’t feel guilty about! Keep this short list in the back of your mind when you know you’ll be heading to a bar or hosting a party and you’ll be all set!
Five healthy(ish) drinks to enjoy!
- Spiced Cider: With only about 150 calories, this warm drink is perfect for the cold days and nights we’re seeing this time of year! Add some orange and cloves to give it a winter twist.
- White sangria: This is an easy way to jazz up your drink if you don’t just feel like having a glass of wine. I’ve included an easy recipe below!
- Yuengling Light Lager: Looking for a non-watered down beer that’s still light on calories? Yuengling managed to combine the health benefits of a lager with a lower carb count. At only 99 calories, this is a solid selection for a healthier classic brew.
- Berries Bubbles: Enjoy your champagne treat for less than 100 calories! Add strawberries, blackberries or raspberries to an OJ/champagne mix for a Berry Mimosa. Add pomegranate juice and some seeds for a delightful Pomegranate Punch!
- Cucumber Gimlet: Add some refreshing cucumber and use agave to get this drink to about 150 calories. Find the full recipe here. In the winter, we also recommend spicing it up with basil leaves!