Dispelling nutrition myths, ranting, and occasionally, raving

Should alcohol have nutrition labels?



I absolutely think that alcoholic beverages should have nutrition information on the labels, and not just calories. Sure the calories are relevant, although I do wonder how useful that information is to most of the population. Perhaps there needs to be more education about what calories mean and how to use nutrition labels. Anyway… That’s another rant. Including more nutrition information than calories would make nutrition labels on alcoholic beverages far more useful. For people with diabetes, for instance, who need to count carbohydrates to ensure effectiveness of medication having this information on bottles would be hugely beneficial.

The argument made by the Health Canada employee in this article is extremely disappointing. Saying that putting a nutrition label on alcoholic beverages shouldn’t be done because it implies that “it can be included as part of a healthy eating plan” is rich. For one thing, low-risk drinking guidelines (supported by many public health and other governmental and health organizations) would suggest that alcohol, when consumed within the guidelines, can be included as part of a healthy diet. If this is the argument being made then shouldn’t nutrition labels be removed from candy, sugar, lard, deli meats, and any other foods that are viewed as “unhealthy”. I think we can all agree that, that’s a ridiculous suggestion.

People have a right to know what they’re ingesting. Alcohol is sold as a beverage. People drink it. Why on earth shouldn’t we be able to access the nutrition information for these beverages? For the people who have specific health concerns and need to have that information to manage their health appropriately. For the people who are constantly trying to lose weight but downing a bottle of wine every night. For those who just want to know what they’re consuming, that information should be directly available on the bottle.

Author: Diana

I'm a registered dietitian from Nova Scotia, living and working in Ontario, Canada. My goal is to help people see food and nutrition from a different perspective and understand that nutrition and health are not necessarily a result of personal choice.

11 thoughts on “Should alcohol have nutrition labels?

  1. Many brands in the USA have nutrition labels, and it’s so useful! I happen to love cider, and it’s nice to be able to look for ones that have less sugar/calories – I would love for labeling to be a thing in Canada.


  2. Yes!!! Great input, Diana! Nutrition information for food and beverages should be accessible to all. Beverages of the alcoholic kind should be no exception.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I totally agree, as a cider drinker I know I’d compare the labels (of the ciders I prefer) at the shop to choose the one lowest in added sugar if I had labels to review at the point of purchase.


  4. It was the worst part of being in Toronto (Ottawa had a few other ciders available)! All the other provinces have it together and when I ask what cider is on tap it’s usually ‘something local’. In Toronto, I just drank beer instead… HA!


    • The sad thing is there are actually some fantastic ciders in Ontario. I got a sampler pack at the LCBO last summer and loved all but one. But of course none of them are available in the LCBO, except for the one I didn’t like :/

      Liked by 1 person

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