Alcohol is full of calories, and unfortunately, it's only fat that has more. So, if you're looking to lose weight, do you have to become a hermit and give up drinking alcohol? The answer is no, you just need to know your enemy. You should stay away from “Premium” alcohol, as premium beers and strong vintage ciders have a much higher calorie count than their less alcoholic counterparts. We've all had the discussion about the various health merits of beer and wine, particularly with regard to each other's caloric content.
But which one is actually more fattening, and how do the calories in wine and beer compare? We examined the evidence. Keep in mind that beer with a higher volume of alcohol has more calories. For example, you can expect 12-ounce (0.35 l) barley wine beer containing 10% alcohol to have approximately 300 calories. That's twice as many calories as commercial beer.
Alcohol is made by fermenting and distilling natural starch and sugar, so ale and stout beer can contain a lot of calories. For example, a pint of beer or dark beer with 5% alcohol can contain more than 250 calories, the same amount in a whole bagel. Ale beer and dark beer can stimulate appetite and make caloric post-pub meals, such as kebabs and fries, look really appealing. The Tax and Trade Office, which regulates alcoholic beverages, defines light beers as those that contain significantly fewer calories than regular versions, but there really are no guidelines for the exact amount of calories allowed in a light beer. In general, most regular beers have around 150 calories per 12-ounce serving and an alcohol by volume (ABV) of 4%.
One gram of alcohol contains around 7 calories, so you'll find that many (but not all) low-calorie beers also contain less alcohol. So when it comes to choosing between ale and beer for weight loss purposes, it's important to remember that the higher the ABV of the beer or ale, the more calories it will contain. Light beers are usually lower in calories than regular beers or ales. However, if you're looking for an alcoholic beverage with fewer calories than beer or ale, you may want to consider wine or spirits.