And more amazing summer cocktail slimdowns
If you plan to toss back a poolside cocktail or two this summer be mindful of your mixers. A 1.5-ounce shot of distilled spirits contains about 100 calories, roughly the same amount in five ounce of wine or a 12 ounce light beer, but eight ounces of a sugary mixer can tack on an extra 350 calories (or more!). To keep it light and improve your nutrient intake, check out the following options. Each packs 200 calories or less and ups the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
1 shot rum
½ cup (4 ounces) 100 percent pineapple juice
¼ cup plain coconut milk (the kind from the dairy case)
¼ cup frozen banana slices
fresh pineapple wedges
Add rum, juice, milk, banana, and ice to blender. Whip until smooth. Pour into glass and garnish with pineapple 200 calories
5 oz wine
½ cup (4 ounces) 100 percent fruit juice, like a blend made with any combination of pomegranate, grape, cranberry, blueberry, etc
¼ cup diced apple and oranges
Stir juice into wine. Pour over ice and garnish with fruit. 185 calories
Lean Bloody Mary
1 shot vodka
6 ounces 100 percent spicy tomato juice
1 large celery stalk
Fill glass with ice. Add vodka and juice. Garnish with celery stick. 175 calories
Slender Vodka Seltzer
1 shot vodka
6 ounces lemon lime seltzer
lemon & lime wedges
Fill glass with ice. Add vodka, then seltzer and garnish with fruit. 100 calories
Keep in mind that alcohol can also be an appetite stimulant and it lowers inhibitions, so you may be more likely to throw caution to the wind after a few drinks. That can result in noshing more than you normally would, or eating foods you wouldn’t touch if you were sober. To thwart overeating under the influence, prepare some healthy low calorie finger foods before you take that first sip, like raw veggies with hummus or popcorn. If they’re ready to go and right in front of your face, you’ll be less likely to reach for the chips.
Cynthia Sass is a registered dietitian with master's degrees in both nutrition science and public health. Frequently seen on national TV, she's a SHAPE contributing editor and nutrition consultant to the New York Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays. Her latest New York Times best seller is S.A.S.S! Yourself Slim: Conquer Cravings, Drop Pounds and Lose Inches.