Diet until you look like your Bitmoji.

Sometimes I feel sorry for the month of January. It really gets no respect and usually is most people’s least-favorite month — except for those crazy Capricorns and affable Aquarians.

And while January signals new beginnings and change and finding your inner chi, it’s also cold as hell, dark as hell and there’s nothing to watch on TV! It’s also the month most of us put ourselves on caloric restrictions. You know, you can’t spell diet without die.

Hell to the NOprah! | Courtesy of Oprah

It is indeed time for me to trim my waistline, but if Oprah thinks she’s going to fool me into thinking cauliflower makes a great potato substitute in mashed potatoes, she’s lost her butter-lovin’ mind.

My plan is just to be more mindful of what I put in my mouth, cut down on cheese and eat smaller portions.

And then, there’s the drinking …

Yes, alcohol packs on the pounds. But if you make better choices when ordering, you can have your birthday cake vodka and shoot it, too. Below is a list of various liquors, wines and beers, along with their caloric and carb counts.

If you’re doing a low-calorie diet, then you may want to stick with light beers or bourbon and sodas. And if you’re watching your carbs, you’ll notice you can basically drink any spirit you want (liquor, not beer), and you’ll be bathing-suit-ready by Derby. Although the last time I was bathing-suit-ready, I was 5 years old.

Last year, I went on a brief low-carb diet and switched my crappy beer preference from Bud Light to Michelob Ultra and/or Miller Lite. If you look at the numbers below, for some reason, Bud Light has twice as many carbs as Miller Lite. Why? Who the hell knows.

If you’re going to drink beer, Ultra is the best choice. However, some bars in town like to charge more for the “trendy beer,” so because my wallet is on a diet as well, that’s when I order Miller Lite. Sipping on a neat pour of bourbon also will help slow down beer consumption, but I wouldn’t advise more than two in one sitting.

Avoid fruit juices and soft drinks. If you’re going to use a mixer, pick soda over tonic. If you’re ordering a cocktail, pick an Old Fashioned over a whiskey sour, or a fresh-made margarita over one made with calorie-packed sour mix.

Unfortunately, Dundee Dip is not part of any diet. | Photo by Sara Havens

Eat less, move more. Blah, blah, blah. I feel like we all know what to do, it’s just the “doing it” that is hard.

And for the record, Dundee Dip is sadly not a part of any diet — not even the latest South Beach/Mediterranean/North Dakota/Dr. Oz/Dr. Seuss regimen.

BEER (12 ounces)

  • Apocalypse Brew Works Cream Ale: 118 calories, 4.7% ABV (alcohol by volume)
  • Apocalypse Brew Works Rye IPA: 214 calories, 7.7% ABV
  • Angry Orchard Cider: 200 calories, 30 carbs, 5.5% ABV
  • Bass Ale: 140 calories, 13 carbs, 5.5% ABV
  • Blue Moon: 171 calories, 13.7 carbs, 5.4% ABV
  • Budweiser: 145 calories, 10.6 carbs, 5% ABV
  • Bud Light: 110 calories, 6.6 carbs, 4.2% ABV
  • Coors Light: 104 calories, 5.3 carbs, 4.15% ABV
  • Corona: 148 calories, 13 carbs, 4.6% ABV
  • Corona Light: 109 calories, 5 carbs, 4.1% ABV
  • Guinness: 126 calories, 10 carbs, 4% ABV
  • Harp: 153 calories, 13 carbs, 5% ABV
  • Lagunitas IPA: 180 calories, 13 carbs, 6.2% ABV
  • Magic Hat #9: 154 calories, 12 carbs, 5.1% ABV
  • Michelob Ultra: 95 calories, 2.6 carbs, 4.2% ABV
  • Miller High Life: 110 calories, 13.1 carbs, 4.7% ABV
  • Miller Light: 96 calories, 3.2 carbs, 4.2% ABV
  • Newcastle: 140 calories, 13 carbs, 5.5% ABV
  • Not Your Father’s Root Beer: 166 calories, 45 carbs, 5.9% ABV
  • Pabst Blue Ribbon: 144 calories, 12 carbs, 4.65% ABV
  • Sierra Nevada Pale Ale: 175 calories, 14 carbs, 5.6% ABV
  • Sierra Nevada Stout: 225 calories, 22.3 carbs, 5.8% ABV
  • Stella Artois: 135 calories, 9 carbs, 5.2% ABV
  • Sweetwater 420: 185 calories, 15 carbs, 5.7% ABV

LIQUOR (1.5 ounces)

  • Absolut vodka: 70 calories, 0 carbs, 40% ABV
  • Absolut Citron vodka: 100 calories, 0 carbs, 40% ABV
  • Jose Cuervo tequila: 97 calories, 0 carbs, 40% ABV
  • Patron Silver tequila: 69 calories, 0 carbs, 40% ABV
  • Jim Beam bourbon: 100 calories, 0 carbs, 40% ABV
  • Old Forester bourbon: 105 calories, 0 carbs, 43% ABV
  • Maker’s Mark bourbon: 110 calories, 0 carbs, 45% ABV
  • Bacardi rum: 96 calories, 0 carbs, 40% ABV
  • Tanqueray gin: 115 calories, 0 carbs, 47.3% ABV
  • Jagermeister: 103 calories, 11 carbs, 35% ABV
  • Fireball: 108 calories, 0 carbs, 33% ABV

WINE (glass)

  • Red wine: 125 calories, 3.8 carbs, 10-14% ABV
  • White wine: 121 calories, 3.8 carbs, 10-14% ABV
  • Sparkling wine: 106 calories, 2.8 carbs, 10-14% ABV
  • Prosecco: 80 calories, 2.0 carbs, 12% ABV

MIXERS (8 ounces)

  • Club Soda: 0 calories, 0 carbs
  • Coke: 92 calories, 25 carbs
  • Diet Coke: 1 calorie, 0 carbs
  • Ginger Ale: 93 calories, 24 carbs
  • Orange Juice: 104 calories, 24 carbs
  • Red Bull: 110 calories, 28 carbs
  • Red Bull Sugarfree: 10 calories, 3 carbs
  • Sprite: 89 calories, 24 carbs
  • Tonic: 90 calories, 23 carbs

Sara Havens is the Culture Editor at Insider Louisville. She's known around town as the Bar Belle and updates her blog ( daily. She's a former editor of LEO Weekly and has written for Playboy and The Alcohol Professor. Havens is the author of two books: "The Bar Belle" and "The Bar Belle Vol. 2."


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