What’s Brewing? Craft beer rules for your waistline (and your tastebuds) | TribLIVE.com
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Keeping your waistline in check throughout the year can be a challenge even without the holiday season’s cookies, cakes and festive beverages.

However, at the end of the day, it’s about adjusting your habits and consuming in moderation for a healthier lifestyle. Knowledge is power, and knowing the things that will help you stay on track is key.

It’s important to celebrate life and all it has to offer and that includes craft beer for many of us. When I hear a conversation about low-calorie beer, I immediately start thinking of the light, domestic brews that indeed have only a few calories but they also lack in taste. In addition to the GMOs and chemical flavorings added, I struggle to understand why I’d even bother. Especially when there are other choices.

• Rule No. 1 is that less taste in beer equals fewer calories. If you’re going for a barrel- aged chocolate raspberry stout, you may have to limit yourself to a half-pour because that’s a lot of taste! But that’s OK because most craft breweries offer 5-ounce pours, so you’ve got this.

• Rule No. 2 is to pick a craft beer by a style that lends itself to fewer calories. Lager, Kolsch, pilsner and gose are good styles to choose from that often have a lower calorie count than other styles. Many will be clean with a refreshing taste, and that’s better than a lack of taste for sure. Gose will be the most unusual of these styles because it’s brewed with salt. Again, if you choose a half-pour, you can easily enjoy multiple craft beers that have a taste with lower calories, too.

• Rule No. 3 is to choose a beer with a lower ABV. More alcohol means more sugar, equals more calories. It’s that simple.

• Rule No. 4 is to drink in moderation. Whether you’re counting calories or not, moderation is a key to happiness on many levels. Hope this provides some direction especially for those who think they can’t drink beer because it’s too fattening. Don’t deprive yourself. Educate yourself on the topic. Although there are hundreds, the proof is right here in these beers with low-calorie counts.

Happy new year, happy new beers, my friends!

Bells’ Brewery Inc. (Mich.) Lager of the Lakes (5 percent ABV). This is a Czech-style pilsner that is light and refreshing with a light hop bitterness. 153 calories per 12-ounce serving.

Oskar Blues Brewery (Colo.) Beerito (4.5 percent ABV). A Mexican lager brewed with premium malts and noble hops. Simple and clean tasting with a unique mouthfeel. 135 calories per 12-ounce serving.

Founders Brewing Co. (Mich.) All Day IPA (4.7 percent ABV). This session IPA is unique because it’s got all of the flavor you’ll expect from an IPA without the calories. 147 calories per 12-ounce serving.

Dogfish Head Brewing Co. (Del.) SeaQuench Ale (4.9 percent ABV) A gose-style ale with lime and a bit of saltiness that adds a refreshing taste. 140 calories per 12-ounce serving.

Mark Brewer is a Tribune-Review contributing writer. He’s the author and illustrator of Brewology, An Illustrated Dictionary for Beer Lovers.

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