Susan Hart: Alcohol – take the calorie quiz!

Alcohol quiz

Local nutrition coach Susan Hart looks at the calories in alcohol in the first of her articles on health and lifestyle.

You may be aware of the alcohol units in a glass of wine or pint of beer but do you ever think about the calories?

What about that bag of nuts or crisps that might also accompany them?

Then read on and you may be surprised

If you had to put these 5 items in order of calories (lowest to highest) what order would they be?

  • Large glass of white wine
  • A chocolate and custard doughnut
  • A slice of chocolate cake
  • Pint of beer
  • Small 50g pack of salted peanuts

How do you think you did?  The answers at the end!

If you got it wrong then you are not alone as 80% of us don’t have a clue about calories in our food and drink. We could make a significant impact on our waistlines and our overall health if we cut back on the alcohol and limit it to a few glasses at the weekend.

Beer bottles

The Department of Health have the following alcohol recommendations

No more than 14 units per week for men and women. That’s around six pints of medium-strength beer or 10 small glasses of low-strength wine.

In calorie terms if a woman consumed her maximum units per week that could add an extra 1500 calories to her diet, which could lead to weight gain and an increased risk of certain conditions.  As we all know obesity is on the rise as is diabetes and the question is, is alcohol part of the problem?

So why not take my challenge

For a week keep an alcohol diary, by recording all the drinks you have consumed (either as photos or as a paper list). Then use the table below to add up the extra calories you have consumed

Pint of beer – 180 calories

Pint of lager (4.8%) –  250 calories

Pint cider – 215 calories

175 ml red wine – 120 calories

175 ml white wine – 165 calories

250 ml red wine – 170 calories

250 ml white wine – 240 calories

single measure of spirit – 60 calories

mixer  – 50 /65 calories

a glass of fizz – 90 calories

If you want a quick way of working out your alcohol units then go to drinkaware where you can input all your data.

Quiz answers

Lowest calories

Doughnut – 143 calories on average

Chocolate cake – 180 calories

Pint of beer- 180 calories

Large glass of wine – up to 240 calories

Highest calories

Small bag (50g) of salted peanuts – 300 calories

Unit guidelines - Drinkaware