Units and calories in prosecco
Find out how many calories and units of alcohol there are in prosecco
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A glass of prosecco might have more alcohol and calories in it than you expect.
A typical-strength 125ml glass of prosecco has around 1.5 units of alcohol. So, over a week, drinking more than a bottle and a half of prosecco in total would put you above the UK Chief Medical Officers' (CMO) low risk drinking guidelines, of drinking less than 14 units a week.
Keeping an eye on how much you drink, and staying within the low-risk guidelines, has clear benefits for your long-term health. It could lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk of developing at least seven types of cancer, or liver or heart disease.
Cutting down on drinking can benefit your waistline too. Alcohol contains almost as many calories as pure fat (around seven calories a gram).
It’s easy to see how much alcohol is in any prosecco - just look out for the Alcohol by Volume (ABV) which you’ll find on the label, or ask at the bar.
The ABV tells you what percentage of the prosecco is alcohol. The higher the ABV, the more alcohol is in the drink and the stronger it is - for example, a 12% ABV prosecco contains 12% pure alcohol.
The amount of alcohol in prosecco can vary. But prosecco’s typical strength means drinking more than f for a woman or six glasses for a man could be classed as ‘binge drinking’ (more than six units of alcohol for a woman, or eight for a man).1
Research shows that binge drinking (between 5-7 units) over a three-to-six-hour period increases your short-term risk of accidents and injuries by two to five times.2
All alcohol, including the alcohol in any prosecco, is made from natural starch and sugar. That means a couple of typical 125ml glasses has the same number of calories as an ice cream sundae.
What’s more, because calories from alcohol are 'empty calories', meaning they have no nutritional value, they don’t benefit our bodies in any way. So, over time, drinking too much can lead to weight gain and start to affect your appearance.
An easy way to cut your calorie intake from prosecco is to choose a non-alcoholic alternative, a lower strength sparkling wine or, if you’re having more than one glass, alternating between prosecco and water.
The strength of prosecco is usually around 12%, which means that it contains 12% pure alcohol. That’s around the same amount of alcohol typically found in other sparkling wines, like champagne or cava. The strength of these drinks can vary though – the best way to check is to look at the label, which will display the ‘alcohol by volume’ (or ABV).
Choosing a lower strength drink as a replacement to a full-strength one can be a great way to cut out unnecessary alcohol and calories. And there are more sparkling wines available than ever before, in supermarkets and pubs. A ‘reduced alcohol’ sparkling wine, like Moscato d'Asti, could be around 5.5% ABV (remember to check the label) – so would cut your alcohol consumption in half compared to an equivalent size prosecco.
Even better for reducing your alcohol intake would be a ‘low alcohol’ wine. These aren’t allowed to be more than 1.2% ABV,3 and many are around 0.5% ABV.
If you’re thinking about cutting the amount of prosecco you drink to improve your health or appearance, you can do it with Drinkaware. Great ways to start are:
If you always have a glass of prosecco to celebrate a good day at work, or commiserate a bad one, try doing something else instead. An alcohol-free dinner out makes for a feel-good treat, while a gym session is a great way to relieve stress.
There’s always an excuse to have a drink, but it can all start to add up. Taking more drink-free days each week is an easy way to cut back and improve your health. Use our DrinkCompare calculator to discover your drinking risk level, and create an action plan to reduce your drinking.
Low alcohol sparkling wine, and even alcohol-free prosecco, are more popular than ever. It’s easy to switch, and they can be a great way to cut your units.
If you’re out for drinks with work, don’t feel pressured to drink more, or in rounds.
Deciding to swap your bubbles to a glass of sparkling water can slow down your drinking, and also offset the dehydration that alcohol causes.
Last Reviewed: 12th January 2022
Next Review due: 12th January 2025