Help your customers stay on track and keep your drinks diet friendly with some tips on us!

48 percent of people say they have put on weight over the past year, and now that lockdown restrictions have been eased(somewhat), many of these people are now aiming to tackle their weight-gain in a bid to get fit for summer. Here, we take a look at how to keep your drinks menu diet-friendly, helping your customers stay on track and have a damn good time while doing it!

The Quarantine-15

We are finally out of lockdown and normality is on the horizon. On April 12th, bars, pubs and restaurants were able to serve customers outdoors once again, well,(the lucky ones that have outdoor facilities); from the 17th May, venues can seat customers indoors; and by the 21st of June —given all goes well —the UK will see the end of all restrictions on social contact. While this is obviously great news, for many, feelings of exaltation are accompanied by worries and anxieties about weight gain that may have occurred over the last year.

People certainly shouldn’t be harbouring any guilt or negative feelings towards themselves as a result of weight gain —this has been an unprecedented year and our bodies have had no choice but to simply adapt to new circumstances.

However, we are conscious that many people will now be on a health kick, especially with summer just round the corner. It is key to adapt to social changes and put the customers’ needs at the forefront of your business. In order to help people stay on track and to keep them feeling healthy during the spring and summer, we’ve got some tips on how you can ‘healthify’ your drinks offering in the coming months

Ditch the syrups

There are a range of cocktails that are actually relatively healthy —bar the alcohol, of course! Especially those that contain few ingredients and make use of low-calorie mixers, such as soda water, light tonic water or even diet lemonade. Mojitos are a great example; although this is a cocktail that is famous for being super sweet, you can easily make a mojito diet-friendly by halving the amount of simple syrup used (or ditching it altogether!). Mint, lime, and soda water are all naturally low-calorie, a shot of rum is about 100 calories, and 2 tablespoons of sugar (in the form of syrup) is approximately 40 calories. Classic cocktails across the board tend to contain lashings of the sweet stuff, so halving the amount of syrup used, or getting rid of it altogether, is a great way to cut back on the calories.

Keep it simple

Keeping it simple is a great way to ensure you can offer delicious drinks without excessive calories. Any spirit combined with a low calorie mixer and a few healthy garnishes and you’re good to go! Tequila and soda is favourite with nutritionists, which comes in at just 100 calories and doesn’t contain any sweetener. Tequila also has a lower glycemic index than other alcohols and it is complemented well by a variety of healthy garnishes, especially citrus fruits, which are healthy and give a tonne of flavour. Keep it traditional with lemon and lime or get experimental, and try adding blood orange, muddled kumquats or even yuzu juice! Make sure the garnish is colourful and give the drink a fun name —et voilà; the perfect low-calorie cocktail.

Make use of fresh, seasonal ingredients

Dietary habits across the Western world are shifting and with the government encouraging people towards living a healthier lifestyle, some customers might be actively seeking ‘healthier’ alternatives to their pre-pandemic favourites. For example, by steering away from the creamier, super-sweet cocktails in favour of something lighter and fresher.

Spruce up your cocktail menu by making use of fresh, low-calorie seasonal ingredients. Fresh fruits and herbs are incredibly healthy, naturally full of vitamins and minerals and extremely flavoursome. Berries come into season in the spring months and with their natural sugar content, they’re a great way to enhance any cocktail. Moreover, fresh herbs like mint, basil, rosemary and sage are beginning to sprout. Make use of these seasonal herbs to add another layer of flavour and complexity to your cocktails. Not only is seasonal food far fresher and tastier, but it is also more nutrient dense than food consumed out of season, so it’s a win-win!

Keep customers informed

While some people are averse to being told the calorie content of their drinks, it might be a good idea to dedicate one section of your cocktail menu to those who are being calorie-conscious, so they can make informed choices when it comes to their drinking habits. Those who aren’t worried can continue to enjoy their cocktails guilt free, but giving customers the choice is a great way to ensure that you’ve covered all bases.

Tee-totally delicious

According to the Office for National Statistics the proportion of people in the UK reporting drinking, and the amount those drinkers report to have consumed have both decreased since 2005. With this in mind, it’s important not to neglect customers who don’t drink but still want to enjoy a delicious, flavoursome beverage on a warm summer’s day. The soft drinks market is broader than ever, with consumers no longer satisfied with a simple Diet Coke or Sprite. Keep your drinks menu all-inclusive by offering a range of delicious mocktails alongside with your alcoholic creations. This doesn’t necessarily mean generating a whole drinks menu, you can simply remove the alcohol from some of the cocktails that you already offer. All the flavour, with none of the units.