But it’s not just the increased volume of alcohol that poses a risk to our health and wellbeing, though its effects should always be considered. Those syrups and mixers perform their alcohol-masking trick using enough sugar to turn a moderately unhealthy drink into something with no nutritional value at all.
So what can we do? Well obviously the best thing would be to stop drinking alcohol. But that’s unrealistic for most people… While recent research has pointed more so to the positives of moderate wine consumption than spirits, we’ve picked out are 5 ‘lower-impact’ cocktails: they’re low on booze, low on sugars, but high on flavour - but still to be drunk in moderation.
1. Hot Toddy
Mix 1 shot of bourbon, 1 tbsp honey, 2 tsp lemon juice in a small cup of boiling water. Stir until it’s all well mixed/dissolved.
A great one for cold winter nights.
2. Gin Gimlet
Over ice, mix a shot of gin with the juice of 2 limes and 1 shot of simple syrup. Garnish with a lime wedge.
A simple traditional cocktail, but it’s lack of sugary mixers and single alcohol measure makes it a better option than some other cocktails. For a healthier twist make the simple syrup by mixing honey and warm water in a 1:1.5 ratio.
3. Vodka Grapefruit
Juice half a grapefruit, add 1 shot of vodka and top up with sparkling water. The simplicity and zest of this cocktail makes it a hit at this time of the year.
4. Rum Punch
Mix 125ml of fresh squeezed orange juice and 125ml of 100% pineapple juice with 1 shot of rum. Serve over ice.
5. Bitter Tea
Brew a cup of fruit tea, add several dashes of Angostura bitters. Not only is this particular cocktail relatively harmless, it also has the added benefit of the antioxidants found in fruit teas.
Do remember to drink in moderation and include alcohol-free days every week
Written by Dr. Noel Duncan