Tequila Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits


 Alexandra Shytsman / Verywell

In This Article

Tequila is an alcoholic beverage made from the distilled juice of the blue agave plant. There are pure or aged varieties depending on how it’s processed. It has become a popular adult drink option and even touted to have health benefits. However, there are no human studies to support tequila being a healthy drink.

What makes tequila so popular is the drink being low-calorie, contains no carbohydrates, and no sugars when consumed without mixers. That said, and as far as alcohol is concerned, it appears to be a better option. And, many people are trying to make healthier choices so are looking for adult beverages without a bunch of sugar and additives.

Tequila Nutrition Facts

The following information is provided by the USDA for a 1.5 fluid ounce shot of tequila.

Calories: 97

Fat: 0g

Sodium: .42mg

Carbohydrates: 0g

Fiber: 0g

Sugars: 0g

Protein: 0g

Alcohol: 14g

Carbs in Tequila

Tequila consumed in pure form without mixers contains 0 grams of carbohydrates per serving. Adding sugar mixers typical of tequila drinks like margaritas would significantly increase the carbohydrates and calories. This is why many people prefer to order a straight shot of tequila with a side lime wedge to keep the calories and carbohydrates to a minimum.

Protein in Tequila

Tequila consumed in pure form without mixers contains 0 grams of protein per serving.

Fiber in Tequila

Tequila consumed in pure form without mixers contains 0 grams of fiber per serving.

Fats in Tequila

Tequila consumed in pure form without mixers contains 0 grams of fat per serving.

Vitamins and Minerals in Tequila

There are trace amounts of minerals including sodium, potassium, and phosphorus in a shot of tequila. However, the amounts are negligible and not shown to offer health benefits.

Health Benefits

There have been misleading headlines about tequila having health benefits. Claims that tequila can help with weight loss or improve bone density are just a few that have been debunked. The research surrounding these claims included animal studies that were misinterpreted. The problem is many people read no further than a sensationalized headline missing the important facts of the research.

And, animal research provides preliminary findings only. Several human studies are required for reliable evidence. It just so happens, the rodents used in the tequila research were ingesting agave, the plant used to make tequila. The animals were not given distilled tequila to drink.

There are a few studies showing agave to have potential health benefits which are promising. However, there are no studies to support drinking tequila offering any health benefits to humans.

Alcohol Content and Tequila

Tequila is considered a hard liquor and ranges between 40-46% alcohol content per one shot serving. Because this form of alcohol is distilled, it will have a higher concentration of alcohol for a small serving size.

But this small shot packs a big punch. The type of alcohol in tequila, like all hard liquor, is ethanol with alcohol effects being felt fairly quickly after taking a shot. Some people may feel a tequila buzz within 10 minutes of consumption.

How fast you feel the effects of alcohol depends on how quickly the alcohol is absorbed and metabolized by the body. The effects may be a bit slower for someone who has eaten prior to drinking a shot of tequila, for example.

Adverse Effects and Tequila

Tequila, as with any alcohol consumption, can come with adverse effects. As alcohol enters your bloodstream, you may experience physical, mental, and behavioral changes. And the more tequila consumed, intoxication can occur ranging from mild to severe.

The following are common side effects experienced with intoxication and drinking tequila:

  • Confusion
  • Impaired motor function
  • Slurred speech
  • Agitation
  • Impaired coordination
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Vomiting
  • Lowered inhibitions
  • Extreme sleepiness
  • Breathing problems

The American Heart Association (AHA) suggests drinking too much alcohol increases your risk of many health problems including high blood pressure, obesity, stroke, breast cancer, liver disease, depression, suicide, accidents, alcohol abuse, and alcoholism.

The AHA recommends having a discussion with your physician if drinking alcohol like tequila in moderation. Moderate alcohol consumption means an average of one to two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women, according to the AHA. One small shot of tequila (1.5 ounces) would equate to one alcoholic drink.

Varieties of Tequila

Tequila is made in Jalisco, Mexico, and a few nearby regions in Mexico. The juice from the blue agave plant is extracted and some of the juice is distilled and aged in American or French oak barrels. The following tequila varieties differ depending on the aging process:

Blanco Tequila – also known as silver or white tequila. Blanco tequila isn’t aged in a barrel, is clear in color, and provides the purest flavor of agave. It has an intense, some would say, hot agave taste with hints of herb, citrus, and black pepper. Blanco is the preferred tequila for mixed drinks because of its strong flavor profile. Because it has an intense flavor, Blanco tequila may not be the best for straight shots.

Reposado Tequila – also known as aged or rested tequila. Reposado is Blanco tequila that has aged in oak barrels for two months to one year. This allows the tequila to pull tannins from the wood creating a golden color, and a smooth honey and caramel flavor. Reposado is often sipped neat, over ice, or taken as a straight shot.

Añejo Tequila – also known as vintage or extra-aged tequila. Añejo is tequila that has been aged in oak barrels for one to three years. The extra time intensifies the flavor and darkens the tequila even more. It has a smooth flavor making it a favorite for sipping neat or over ice.

Tequila Drink Recipes to Try

Sugar-Free Margarita with Orange Extract

Low-Carb Sugar-Free Sweet and Sour Cocktail Mixer

Calories in Homemade and Restaurant Margaritas

Alcoholic Drinks That are Low in Carbs

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