In the build up to Christmas and New Year’s Eve, or just any day of the week in student life, we might find ourselves questioning how healthy our drinks are. Knowing the health profiles of alcoholic drinks – amount of calories, nutrients, sugar and so on – can help us be more mindful when drinking. Or, at least help us know what we’re getting ourselves into. So, for the ultimate question: which one is healthier – beer or Prosecco?
When it’s time to toast, will you be reaching for that refreshing pint of beer or the sparkling glass of Prosecco? Keep reading for more information on how healthy, or unhealthy, they are comparatively.
How healthy is Prosecco?
How many calories are in Prosecco?
The amount of calories in a glass of Prosecco is contested. Drinkaware claim it’s the same amount of calories in a 125ml glass of Prosecco as in an ice cream sundae. However, Think Wine Group and Drink Well UK claim the same size glass of Prosecco holds 80-90 calories. This seems to be much less than a sundae to us! Overall, Prosecco generally holds less calories than wines, and there are many ‘skinny’ versions available.
How much sugar is in Prosecco?
Most sites agree that a standard size glass of Prosecco holds 1.5 grams of sugar. That’s the same as a lemon or just over a third of a teaspoon. But if you’re having more than once glass, those thirds add up. However, Prosecco does hold a little less sugar than many wines, and significantly less than other alcoholic drinks, such as a Gin and Tonic (14 grams), or Cider (12.8 grams). For reference, national guidance is for women to have 25 grams, or 6 teaspoons of sugar a day in total, and men to have 36 grams or 9 teaspoons.
How much alcohol is in Prosecco?
According to drinakaware, there are approximately 1.5 units or 12% of alcohol in a 125ml glass of Prosecco. That’s for normal, or typical strength, types of Prosecco. This means drinking more than six glasses for a man, and even less for women, would be classed as binge drinking.
Are there any nutrients in Prosecco?
Unfortunately, this is debated still. However, some claim that Prosecco has antioxidant benefits to it, due to the polyphenols it contains. Also, some research on white wine generally has shown that there may be benefits to the lungs – who’d have thought? Prosecco contains 0% fat too, which is something, as well as zinc, magnesium and potassium, which are great for enhancing your mood.
Although there are some surprising upsides to drinking Prosecco, it’s important to stress that these are when drinking in moderation!
How healthy is beer?
How many calories are in beer?
An average pint of beer (or lager) has 180 calories in it, which is roughly the same as a hard boiled egg and a couple of almonds on the side. In 330ml bottles, such as Heineken or Corona, there’s more like 150 calories (just the egg). Obviously, a bottle or pint here or there isn’t much, but if you knock them back easily – it’s important to be aware.
How much sugar is in beer?
On a healthy note, there is 0g of sugar in beer. So you can mentally give a tick to beer as a healthier option when it comes to comparing sugar quantity with Prosecco. However, if you drink Cider, which is actually more a type of wine than beer, then that’s a different story. Due to the fruitiness of Cider, there’s a lot of sugar, with a pint of Magners containing 21g of sugar. That’s the majority of your recommended daily intake in just one pint!
How much alcohol is in beer?
This generally depends on the brand of beer of you choose, but the amount of alcohol in beer generally falls between 4-6%. This is the case for pale lagers, such as Peroni, Heineken or Corona. It’s also true for Guinness, which is often believed to have more than the 4.2% alcohol content it has.
Are there any nutrients in beer?
It only makes sense that there’s some nutritional benefits to the calories in beer. They contain some traces of potassium, calcium, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, selenium, thiamine, iron and zinc. However, they have fairly high amounts of B vitamins due to the yeast, which contributes to cellular and brain function. Some studies also claim that it can aid digestion, help the heart, and prevent kidney stones, however this – like Prosecco- only refers to moderate drinking.
Verdict: What’s healthier – beer or Prosecco?
Comparatively, it’s likely that a glass of Prosecco or pint of beer doesn’t affect your health much – positively or negatively. However, when the quantities start to increase, or the frequency of how often you drink them increases, the impacts may be felt more. On the whole, beer has less sugar and alcohol content than Prosecco, but more calories. Neither have much fat in them. When looking at the health benefits, there’s arguably more minerals and nutrients in beer. However, this again is fairly minimal overall.
If we had to – and we mean had to – decide which was healthier, it would most likely be beer. This is mainly due to the wider array of vitamins and nutrients, and lower sugar and alcohol count.
When thinking about the healthiness of drinking, it’s also a good idea to factor in mental health too. You can read more about this in our guide to hangxiety.