Thursday, December 30, 2010

Healthy New Year's Eve Drinks

I like to call New Year's Eve, "amateur night".  It's that time when everyone thinks you should drink in celebration.  Maybe you are looking to rid yourself of the memories of 2010 or you want to get 2011 started with a bang.  That's great, do whatever floats your boat - but don't drink and drive.

Now here's the dose of reality you didn't ask for - alcohol has calories.  (It's one saving grace is NO fat.)  Yes I know, you know, but do you know how many?  I bring you this handy calculator that the government has set up to discourage college binge drinking.  While I don't believe you have plans to get completely faced, you should still be aware, alcohol calories add up.

A couple of examples - 

Drink Ounces Calories
Light Beer            12                110
Martini 3.5               140
Manhattan 3.5               164
Margarita            4                  168
Champagne 4                  84
Red Wine   4                  80

I am laughing at those a bit, because other than the serving size and calories on the wine, the Manhattan and the champagne, these are likely inaccurate compared to what people may imbibe tomorrow night.  Beer is frequently 16 ounces now; that's a straight vodka martini, it doesn't account for juices or chocolate (my fave); and if you ever got a 4 ounce margarita, you would probably send it back as too skimpy.

With all of that said, there is nothing wrong with having a couple of drinks on an occasion.  If all else fails, it's a social lubricant so you can put up with your cousin Gary who decided to tag along.  The key really, like any other food, is moderation.  (Are you sick of being told that yet?)

I have rounded up a few drink recipes to add to your festivities.  If you drain the alcohol from them, most are kid friendly and all will be lower in calories.

Mojito Fresco
Poinsettia Mimosas
Golden Sparklers
Champagne Ginger Cocktail
Cava Cocktail
And this is a whole website of "Mocktails", so you don't have to worry about taking out the alcohol.
Just some ideas to mix things up for you.  My best advice is, when watching calories, this is not the time to try something new or do shots (which average 100 calories a piece).  This is a time to go with a favorite that you can savor and really enjoy, making every little drop count.

Tomorrow: New Year's Day recipes to bring you luck.

Yours in Health,


  1. Love the ideas since I'll be spending with older teens. Moctails arejust the ticket!

  2. Thanks Paula, Happy New Year!