Eggnog or Eggnot?

Here’s to a Low-Calorie Toast!

You arrive at a coworker’s holiday party and she greets you with a warm smile and a glass of homemade eggnog. But, did you know that just one cup of eggnog could contain nearly 350 calories? Yikes! That beverage could take up 17 percent or more of your recommended daily intake.

Most people know that they should avoid sugary desserts and butter-soaked side dishes if they want to stay healthy and lean. The dishes that will cause you to pack on the pounds are usually pretty obvious. But what happens when they’re not dishes at all? Well, much like the eggnog, it usually takes us by surprise.

Thank goodness this drink is only served once a year. Still, its alarmingly high calorie content serves as a good reminder that we need to be aware of everything that crosses our lips – especially alcoholic beverages. Most drinks aren’t quite as heavy as eggnog, but the calories can add up fast when you have more than one. Here are just a few popular drinks along with their estimated calorie counts:

  1. Cosmopolitan: 210 calories
  2. Mimosa: 135 calories
  3. Red wine: 125 calories
  4. Light beer: 100 calories
  5. Champagne: 90 calories

According to a 2012 National Health and Nutrition Survey study, adults in the U.S. consume an average of nearly 100 calories from alcohol per day. Of course, that doesn’t mean that everyone is drinking alcohol every day. It’s an average based on our overall consumption. It does indicate, though, that we should keep a closer watch on those liquid calories. And considering there’s a good that chance many of those liquid calories are consumed over the holiday season, what better time to start than right now?

So, here are some of my favorite alcohol alternatives to get you through those holiday toasts.

  1. Mock Champagne – Simply combine ginger ale with a splash of white grape juice and you’ve got yourself a tasty non-alcoholic beverage that will look the same as what’s in everyone else’s toasting flutes.
  2. Arnold Palmer – The Arnold Palmer is a classic virgin cocktail made with equal parts of iced tea and lemonade. The trick here is to go easy on the sweetener.
  3. Berry Lemonade – Make some fresh lemonade (again, easy on the sweetener) and sprinkle in some colorful berries. It’s festive, fun and low calorie.
  4. Spa Water – Have you ever had cucumber water at a spa? It’s refreshing, rejuvenating and it somehow makes you feel like you’re being pampered. Instead of ingesting something mildly toxic, why not nourish your body from the inside out? To make spa water, add cucumber slices to a pitcher of water and refrigerate overnight.
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