Units and calories in alcopops
Get the facts about alcopops and what you can do to cut back on the amount you drink.
- What are the daily unit guidelines for alcopops?
- Check the strength of your alcopop
- Things you can do to reduce the amount you drink
- Common alcopop brands in the UK
What are the daily unit guidelines for alcopops?
The government advises people not to regularly drink more than the daily unit guidelines of 3-4 units of alcohol for men (three 275ml 4% ABV alcopops) and 2-3 units of alcohol for women (two 275ml 4% ABV alcopops). ‘Regularly’ means drinking every day or most days of the week.
If you regularly drink over these guidelines you could be increasing your chances of developing long-term health conditions. Find out more about the effects of alcohol.
A bottle of alcopop contains as many calories as a hot chocolate with whipped cream
A 275ml bottle of alcopop with 4% ABV can contain up to 171 calories, similar to a hot chocolate with whipped cream. This is due to the high sugar content present within these carbonated beverages.
Check the strength of your alcopop
Checking an alcopop's ABV (alcohol by volume) will give you a guide to how strong it us. The ABV tells you what percentage of the drink is made up of alcohol. For example, an alcopop with 4% ABV is 4% pure alcohol. The higher the percentage, the more alcohol is present.
Things you can do to reduce the amount of alcopops you drink
To stay on track, try these top tips:
1. Sink soft drinks between alcopops Alcopops taste very similar to soft drinks. Try drinking juice, cola or another soft option instead of or between alcopops. It will help you stay hydrated and slow down the rate you’re drinking.
2. Calorie count Alcopops are easy to swig back – before you know it you will have had your day’s upper unit limit. Cut back by reminding yourself how many calories you’re consuming.
3. Opt out of rounds Drinking in rounds means that you’re keeping up with the fastest drinker, so you could be consuming your units faster than you’d like. Regain control, and maybe even save some cash, by buying your own drinks instead.
4. Give alcohol-free days a go If you drink regularly, your body starts to build up a tolerance to alcohol. This is one of the main reasons why it’s important to consider taking regular breaks from drinking. Why not give our non alcoholic cocktails a go. Test out having a break for yourself and see what positive results you notice.
5. Track your drinking over time If you choose to drink, recording exactly what you’ve drunk during the week will give you a great idea of whether you’re within the daily guidelines. MyDrinkaware, our web-based drink tracking tool, is perfect for this.
Discover some more practical ways to cut back on alcopops with our tips on cutting down.
Are you drinking too much?
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Page updated: November 2013
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