Hard cider is basically the rosé of the fall—festive AF and crazy-delicious.
But—sorry to be the bearer of bad news here—there is going to be a fair amount of sugar in each glass (or bottle…depending on your cider of choice), which isn’t necessarily the best news if you’re trying to lose weight.
“Because it’s fermented with fruits like apples, peaches, and pears, all of which are naturally high in sugar, cider actually has a much higher sugar content overall than beer, which is fermented with lower-sugar grains,” explains dietician Samantha Rigoli, RD, founder of Healthy to the Core in New York City.
That doesn’t mean you have to avoid it entirely if you’re gunning for weight loss, though. In fact, cider may even have an edge on beer (despite the sugar levels) because beer has a higher alcohol content—which also means more calories. (FYI: There are seven calories per gram in alcohol, Rigoli notes, so more alcohol = more calories.)
If you’re looking to drop a few pounds—and still get your drink on—the best hard ciders for weight loss are those with a lower alcohol content. “Anywhere from 4.5 to 5.5 percent alcohol, rather than 7 to 10 percent alcohol, is a good range,” says Rigoli, so you’re not hitting your body with the sugar-alcohol one-two punch. These picks all hit that sweet spot.