These low calorie alcoholic drinks will let you indulge without ruining your waistline.
Frozen strawberry margarita
What's in there: 564 calories, 16 g sugar in 12 oz.
Just because there's fruit in the name doesn't mean it's good for you; most restaurant versions are made with a sugary syrup and are seriously oversize. One of these slushy drinks packs in more calories than two bags of Skittles.
Make it healthier: Order a plain margarita on the rocks to save up to 300 calories. Also ask for one with no salt: That dusted rim may provide more than 2,000 milligrams of sodium, nearly your entire daily allowance. Want to mix up a batch at home? Skip the sugary mix and use fresh lime juice instead.
What's in there: 242 calories, 25 g sugar in 8 oz.
This Cuban cocktail (a blend of rum, sugar, mint leaves, lime juice, and club soda) can harm your waistline and sap your energy, since sweet drinks may up your risk of having a hangover.
Make it healthier: Ask the bartender to cut back on the sugar by a third and add a few extra splashes of club soda to lower the calorie count. At home, swap the sweetener for a low- or no-cal one, like stevia.
[header = Low calorie mixed drinks and low calorie beers: ideal for your next party.]
Gin and tonic
What's in there: 164 calories, 17 g sugar in 8 oz.
The standard shot (a 1.5-ounce serving) of gin has 97 calories— and no sugar. But fill that glass with tonic water and you'll wind up consuming 4 teaspoons of the sweet stuff.
Make it healthier: Trade the tonic for club soda, seltzer, or diet tonic and a wedge of lime to shave off nearly 70 calories. Also request a brand of gin that's 80 proof rather than 90 or 100 proof. The higher alcohol content can tack another 27 calories onto your drink.
What's in there: 258 calories, 25 g sugar in 12 oz.
Prepared with antioxidant-rich red wine and fruit, sangria may seem like a smart choice. But many recipes also call for sugar, soda or juice, and spirits, like triple sec or brandy.
Make it healthier: Opt for a glass of red wine (125 calories) or create your own 100- calorie punch with 4 ounces of red wine, plus diet lemon-lime soda, orange slices, and berries.
Low calorie beer
What's in there: 156 calories, 0 g sugar in 12 oz.
A single beer won't do much dietary damage, but few people stop at one when they're socializing.
Make it healthier: Order a brew in a bottle rather than one that's on tap. Research shows that bartenders tend to overpour draft beers by 22 percent. Try MGD 64 or Beck's Premier Light to slash 92 calories.