Summer is quickly approaching, and this year, there's a lot to be excited about. As more people are being vaccinated and we continue to put the woes of summer 2020 behind us, there will be plenty of opportunities to (safely) enjoy a few beers with family and friends. If you're someone who is trying to stay on track with a weight-loss goal this summer, or you just want to make healthier drink choices, it can be a challenge to choose the right beer.
Although research has shown that mild consumption of alcohol should not lead to weight gain, there are still plenty of beers that are extremely high in sugar and calories. (Unlike any of The 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now!)
Related: Surprising health facts about beer
We were curious about which beers might be worth avoiding this summer and which ones were safe, so we asked an expert to help us out.
The worst beer to drink this summer is…
Bud Light Lime-A-Rita
Per can (8 oz): 220 calories, 29.1 g carbs, 8% ABV
"This one is confusing because it comes from Bud 'Light,' but the worst choice of beer is Bud Light's Lime-A-Rita," says Laura Burak MS, RD, CDN, founder of Laura Burak Nutrition, and author of Slim Down with Smoothies. It's important to not be fooled by Bud Light's name, because the Lime-A-Rita isn't very "light" at all.
"Although it is in the beer category, it's really a sugary margarita in a can," says Burak.
These beers aren't bad every now and then, but the calories and sugar content can add up if it's your summer drink of choice.
"One of these 300-500 calorie beers is like the equivalent of a typical meal or snack I would recommend to a client so if you are adding this many calories in the form of beverages to your diet, you can easily add calories and sugary carbs that may impede you from moving closer to your health goals," Burak notes.
Looking for more tips to help you reach those weight-loss goals? Learn how to fire up your metabolism and lose weight the smart way.
What should you drink instead?
When it comes to alcohol, moderation is always key.
"Alcohol, in general, is not a nutritious food, adds extra calories, and can lead to unhealthy habits after drinking (disrupted sleep, dehydration, lack of motivation the next day, cravings for junk food, etc.)," says Burak. This is why it's helpful to stick to one or two cans of beer at a time.
If you're reaching for the beer, Burak suggests something that falls below 100 calories.
"Go for one of the lighter varieties like Bud Select 55, Michelob Ultra, Heineken Light, and Corona Light," she suggests.
When you're out and about this summer, you can still enjoy a crisp beer in the sun while maintaining your weight-loss goals. The key is sticking to a light beer with less sugar, and drinking just one or two at a time. Now, time to get sipping!