THE amount of booze we guzzle on inevitably increases over the festive season - with office parties and Christmas markets in full swing.
And - for many dieters - they're left worrying about just how much their indulging on and whether a festive tipple might ruin their weight loss journey altogether.
However, diet guru Terri-Ann Nunns has emphasised that you can still enjoy alcohol over Christmas and stay well on track with your diet.
She says: "Christmas is a time of year where we can enjoy ourselves and indulge a little but its important that were mindful of what we are putting into our bodies, especially if we are trying to stay focused and on track in the build up to Christmas.
"We often forget about the calories in drinks and the huge impact they can have on our daily intake if we are not careful.
"Some really simple swaps can be made to ensure that calorie intake is reduced, without putting a dampener on your festive spirits."
Here, Terri-Ann shares her top seven alcohol swaps which you can make this season.
You can slash a huge amount of calories by opting for a sloe gin instead of eggnog.
Eggnog can contain up to 350 calories, while sloe gin has just 85 calories.
Terri-Ann says: "Eggnog is made with milk, egg and sugar in addition to the alcohol of choice so, depending on the amounts of ingredients used, a glass of eggnog could quite easily exceed 350kcals.
"This has to be one of the most indulgent drinks around Christmas time and certainly wont help if you are trying to manage your weight.
"Another drink that is equally enjoyable but for different reasons is sloe gin.
"You can have it warm or on ice but it is still a tasty treat - with much fewer calories."
Everyone loves a glass of desert wine for after your meal, however, one small glass totals up to 118 calories.
Terri-Ann, founder of the Terri-Ann 123 Diet Plan, instead recommends going for a glass of sherry which is just 60 calories.
She says: "If you want a sweet alcoholic treat to follow your meal, opting for a glass of Sherry would halve your calorie intake in comparison to a small glass of desert wine.
"You are served smaller quantities of Sherry as it has a higher alcohol content compared to other wines, coming in at around 18-20% ABV."
There's nothing more festive than the smell of a spiced mulled wine brewing on the hob.
But don't worry, dieters don't have to ditch this festive drink - you can instead try and make a lower calorie version at home.
A glass of mulled wine made with sugar contains 210 calories, whereas if you make it with sweetener this drops it down to 145 calories.
"Mulled wine can be a lovely drink to have at Christmas and if you are making your own at home, it is possible to make a lower calorie version," Terri-Ann says.
Mulled wine can be a lovely drink to have at Christmas and if you are making your own at home, it is possible to make a lower calorie version
"Normally when making mulled wine, you need to warm up wine and add spices and sugar.
"Adding the sugar obviously adds more calories but you can actually use sweetener instead of sugar to achieve that sweet taste without the calories.
"Try artificial sweeteners or natural sweeteners such as stevia.
"Alternatively, you could add more flavourings, spices and lemon juice and not add sugar or sweeteners at all."
Celebrating Christmas with a glass of prosecco rather than a large glass of wine will significantly cut down your calorie intake.
In particular, a large glass of wine contains 220 calories whereas a glass of prosecco has just 85 calories.
Terri-Ann says: "All wines and prosecco brands vary in alcohol and sugar content, but a glass of prosecco is likely to be less than half the calories of a large glass of wine.
"A large glass of wine is 250ml or a third of a bottle, whereas prosecco is served in smaller glasses, generally serving 125ml.
"You often find that the sugar content can be lower in prosecco which again, gives prosecco the edge when it comes to calories.
"A glass of prosecco will provide you with 1.5 units of alcohol whereas a large glass of wine is likely to be around three units."
This may seem obvious but swapping a pint of beer for a bottle significantly reduces the volume you will drink and therefore the calories, especially if you plan to have more than one.
A pint of lager contains 210 calories whereas a bottle has 140.
"The term beer belly doesnt exist without reason; beer can be a big contributor to weight gain," Terri-Ann says.
The term beer belly doesnt exist without reason; beer can be a big contributor to weight gain
"Although the %ABV (alcohol by volume) is less than wine for example, the volume in which beer is consumed if drinking pints means that the calories mount up very quickly.
"Therefore, if beer is the drink for you, consider going for bottles to lessen the impact on your calorie intake."
Long Island Iced Tea contains a staggering 400 calories, so if you want your cocktail fix maybe try for a 125-calorie Bloody Mary.
Terri-Ann says: "Long Island Ice Tea combines vodka, gun, rum, tequila, triple sec and cola so there really is no surprise that, dependent on quantities used, this drink can reach 400kcals if not more!
"Not taking into account the potential of a looming hangover, the calorie content of this drink is more than a cheeseburger from McDonalds!
"If you want to go for a healthier cocktail, choosing something like a Bloody Mary would mean you would consume much fewer calories and you could even hit two of your five a day if youre having 150ml tomato juice and if you eat the celery stick afterwards."
By changing your mixer to one that is sugar-free, you can make a significant reduction to your calorie intake.
In particular, a regular gin and tonic is 100 calories whereas one made with slimline tonic is 60 calories.
Terri-Ann says: "If you are trying to manage your weight, this is a really easy swap to make and the taste is virtually the same.
"Slimline tonics and other related drinks use sweeteners instead of sugar with a resulting calorie reduction.
How to lose weight and still drink wine...in 6 easy steps
1. Mindful boozing
Be mindful of what you are drinking and anticipate what you'll be having throughout the day so you can make it fit with your calories.
2. Don't deny yourself
Trying to quench a craving with something less than the crave will only leave you craving more, hating your diet and feeling deprived.
3. Up the exercise
Ensure you are still in a calorie deficit by extending your workouts to ramp up your energy expenditure.
4. Meal prep
Having a healthy snack prepared for when you get home can stop you reaching for junk food.
Drinking water between each glass of tipple will slow down how much you are drinking and help prevent an awful hangover the next morning.
6. It's OK to say no
Going out and not drinking is a skill but definitely worth trying. Youll be amazed at how much fun you can have and how great you will feel the next day.
HO HO NO Coffee shop festive drinks contain 'up to 94g of sugar' - same as 3 cans of coke
DAD BOD TO BUFF I lost 8st to renew my wedding vows - and now I look like Mr Incredible
BURNING UP Six ways to speed up fat loss & the best portion sizes to shed pounds
FEEL THE BURN Top tips to reset your diet and boost fat burn before Christmas
NO WEIGH World's fattest man who weighed 93 STONE can walk again after shedding 52st
SLIDING SCALES I lost 10st after getting so fat I got wedged in a seat on the Tube to work
walsh happening? X Factor's Louis Walsh shows off impressive weight loss ahead of final
TASTE THE RAINBOW Healthiest diets are all the colours of the rainbow, experts say
BANANARAMA Eating banana SKINS helps you shed pounds, beat the bloat & sleep, expert says
"Remember that these figures are based on single measures.
"If you opt for a double, you are adding around 55kcals per additional measure of gin.
"And, if you are pouring your own measures at home, its very easy for single measures to turn into triples - which may mean more fun but also means more calories!"
Here is the original post:
Weight loss: The 7 boozy swaps to help you enjoy Christmas WITHOUT piling on the pounds - The Sun