How many units and calories are in cider?


Not all ciders are created equal…

Watch out for ‘white’ or super-strength cider that sits at around 8% ABV. ‘Farmhouse’ cider may sound quaint, but it can still weigh in at up to 12% ABV!

To figure out just how many units you are drinking, you first need to know the Alcohol By Volume (ABV), this will be printed on the packaging. Remember to watch out for those higher ABV% ciders such as Frosty Jack’s, White Lightning, K Cider and Special Brew.

You can work out how many units there are in any amount of cider by using the formula below:
ABV x ml ÷ 1000 = units

For example, to work out the number of units in a 500ml can of 7.5% ABV cider:
7.5 x 500ml ÷ 1000 = 3.75 units

‘Regular’ Cider unit guide
1x Half Pint (284ml) of 4.5% Cider = 1.25 Units
1x Pint (568ml) of 4.5% Cider = 2.5 Units

‘Super-Strength’ Cider unit guide
1x Half Pint (284ml) of 8% Cider = 2.3 Units
1x Pint (568ml) of 8% Cider = 4.5 Units
1x 2-litre bottle (2000ml) of 8% Cider = 16 Units

The recommended weekly alcohol limit in the UK for men and women is 14 units, which is the same as 5 and a half pints of 4.5% cider. If you are drinking ‘super-strength’ cider, that comes down to around 3 pints.

Find out more about units in a beer.


There is such a thing as a cider belly…

  • Cider can be high in natural and added sugars, which can increase the risk for health problems like diabetes and high blood pressure.

  • With around seven calories per gram, alcohol contains almost the same calories as pure fat - so drinking too much cider can lead to weight gain and start to affect how you look and feel.

  • When you drink cider, the alcohol is burned as a fuel source before your body uses anything else. This includes carbohydrates and lipids, which end up as fat.

There are 249 calories in the average pint of cider - that’s the same as eating a hamburger!

A man needs around 2,500 calories a day to maintain his weight. For a woman, that figure is around 2,000 calories. These values can vary depending on age, metabolism and levels of physical activity, among other things.


What are the benefits of cutting down?

There are so many reasons to cut down on how much cider you drink!

  • Improved energy!
    Hangovers are one thing, but did you know that alcohol can disrupt your REM sleep? By cutting down, your quality of sleep will improve, and you will be more likely to wake up refreshed – as well as hangover free.

  • Better relationships
    Drinking can affect your judgement and behaviour. You may behave irrationally or aggressively when you're drunk which can put relationships with friends and family under pressure.

  • Better heart health
    By drinking within the UK low risk guidelines, you decrease your chance of developing heart disease and could lower your blood pressure.

Any more than 5.5 pints of 4.5% ABV cider in a week will put you over the low risk drinking guidelines.

Any more than 5.5 pints of 4.5% ABV cider in a week will put you over the low risk drinking guidelines.

What is a safe amount of cider to drink?

Understanding the low risk drinking guidelines in relation to cider.

Low risk drinking guidelines advise that both men and women should not regularly drink more than 14 units a week. BUT don’t binge by ‘saving up’ your 14 units. It’s best that they are spread out over the week.

If you regularly drink over these guidelines, you are increasing your chances of developing long-term health conditions.

Any more than 5.5 pints of 4.5% ABV cider in a week will put you over the low risk drinking guidelines. If you are drinking super-strength cider, that amount comes down to 3 pints or less.