If it comes in a fancy glass, is decorated with a paper umbrella and has a cherry on top, it’s probably bad news. Cocktails are in essence liquid desserts and, while fine to have one as an occasional treat, shouldn’t be your drink of choice for the evening.
- One cocktail can pack as much as 1000 kJ. Yes you read right, 1000 kJ (250 calories). Thats the same as a light meal!
- Smaller Martini-like cocktails may contain one tot less alcohol and less or no mixer but they are generally consumed faster and the temptation is to have another.
- Ciders, coolers and flavoured alcoholic beverages are more energy dense than beer and more like cocktails as they contain on average 800 kilojoules.
How to make smarter waist-friendly cocktail choices:
- As cocktails are ‘pudding in a glass’ the wise choice is to have one as an occasional treat, as the problem is having more than one cocktail.
- A better alternative to a cocktail is to have a drink containing a single tot of alcohol with a sugar free mixer such as Brandy and Coca-Cola Lite / Zero or gin and sugar free tonic water.
- For every cocktail or alcoholic drink make sure you have an equal amount of water.
- Coolers are best poured over generous amounts of ice to dilute them and make the drink last longer.
- Compensate for alcoholic beverages with meals by having little or no starch with the meal, and no dessert.
Still want a paper umbrella drink? Fake it! Why not try your hand at making a mocktail or two? Not only will this benefit your waistline but it is the responsible course to take, especially when driving.
125ml soda or sparkling water
A few fresh mint sprigs
2 tsp Sugar
3 dashes bitters
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker / stirrer, add crushed ice and pour into an unusually shaped glass.
Creamy Strawberry Mocktail
½ cup Strawberry Yoghurt
1 cup Fresh Strawberries
1 cup Fat free milk
1/2 cup ice
Blend all ingredients and serve decorated with sliced strawberries.