The Reason You Should Think Twice About Drinking Long Island Iced Teas

By the time 5 o'clock rolls around on Friday afternoon, you're in need of an adult beverage. There are plenty of happy hour drinks to choose from, whether you're in the mood for a bubbly pint, a stiff old-fashioned, or a fruity margarita. One of the most common cocktails on the menu no matter which bar you frequent is the Long Island iced tea. First published in Betty Crocker's cookbook in the 1960's, the drink has a murky past, with another man — Robert Butt — claiming he invented it in the 1970's (via Thrillist).

Regardless of where they originated, Long Island iced teas are delicious and refreshing (and scarily easy to drink). Unfortunately, however, they probably aren't the smartest thing to order the next time you sidle up to the bar. Here's why you might want to rethink reaching for that tall glass of something cold known as the Long Island iced tea.

Long Island iced teas are full of alcohol and calories

If you don't remember what your last Long Island iced tea tasted like, it may not be your bad memory to blame — it may be the incredibly high alcohol content of the popular drink. While there are all different recipes for Long Island iced tea — and while it varies from bar to bar — the cocktail traditionally contains a whole plethora of liquors, including vodka, gin, rum, tequila and Triple Sec (via Food Network). Yes, all in one drink. reports that the average Long Island iced tea has 3.75 ounces of alcohol, which is more than double the size of a shot, which is 1.5 ounces. Yikes.

Not only are Long Island iced teas very boozy, they're also very caloric. Because of all the alcohol combined with sour mix and cola, the cocktail can pack in a hefty 780 calories, according to Drinks Business. In fact, the site dubbed the Long Island iced tea one of the "world's most fattening drinks." Not exactly a very happy hour in the making.