Alcohol is almost as calorific as fat but many dieters tend to ignore it, according to research from the World Cancer Fund.
A drinker may get nearly 10% of total calorie intake from alcohol but many regard it as ’empty’ calories. But having a large glass of wine at 178 calories is the same as eating two chocolate digestive biscuits. And to exercise if off you will need to go for a brisk 30 minute walk. Added to which there is no nutritional value in alcohol.
Kate Mendoza, head of health information at WCRF, said: “Recent reports have shown that people are unaware of calories in drinks and don’t include them when calculating their daily consumption.”
She said that cutting down on drinking has a big effect of maintaining a healthy weight as well as reducing the risk of cancer.
Alcohol has been linked with breast, bowel, mouth and liver cancer.
If you don’t want to abstain entirely, there are ways that can help you cut down, including opting for smaller glass sizes, diluting alcohol with soda water or a low-calorie soft drink, alternating between alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and keeping a few nights each week booze-free.
Find out your calorie intake through alcohol: the WCRF has produced an Alcohol Calorie Calculator for different drinks that shows approximately how much exercise you would need to do to burn off the alcohol calories you consume.