It is a common misconception that alcohol and weight loss are mortal enemies. The reality can be surprising… In fact, scientists have found that alcohol may not be as dreadful as you might think and in some ways can assist in the process of burning fat.
Alcohol has calories, in fact, it has 7 kcals per gram compared to fat which has 9kcal/gram, so it makes sense that avoiding alcohol would eliminate the risk of entering a surplus of calories. Remember each person has there own individual allowance of calories and if you go beyond what you need, the body will store the excess as fat.
Alcoholic drinks are often referred to as “empty” calories. This means that they provide your body with calories but contain very little nutrients, which the body uses to repair, rebuild, and help to function properly. Drinks that have mixers, such as fruit juice or soda, contain even more calories due to the added sugar content and why there so delicious. It very easy to put yourself into a surplus by mixing drinks, this is why a lot of bodybuilders will enjoy straight alcohol or use zero-calorie mixers like soda water and lime.
When we consume alcohol, it’s burned first due to the body going into high alert thinking we have been poisoned and must do all it can to flush it out of our system, this includes putting a halt to metabolizing all of the essential nutrients we need like protein for recovery, glucose from carbohydrates or lipids from fats as energy.
So now as the body is using alcohol as a primary source of energy, any excess calories or fuel will be stored as fat and much harder to access until you correct your metabolism in the following days or even weeks depending on how hard you hit it.
How it can make you fat?
Next, drinking is often associated with eating poor quality, high fat, high carb foods. This can certainly put some pressure on your metabolism and in itself, negate any positive benefits associated with moderate alcohol consumption.
While intoxicated your brain is not thinking as clearly as normal, this reason alone makes it much easier to binge eat or make poor choices after a big night out. This means that alcohol breaks down those mental disruptions that prevent you from acting on impulses and thoughts. One study suggests that alcohol can actually trigger hunger signals in the brain, leading to an increased urge to eat more food, I have personally seen females give in to temptations of binge eating as I would suspect this has a lot to do with their hormones and want for socializing.
So, what do you do?
Drink or Keep away from it like the plague?
- Avoid greasy fast foods while drinking and make sure you eat something healthy and filling before going out for a big night.
- Order alcoholic drinks that are low-carb or have low-calorie. Some great options include Rum and Diet Cola, Dry Red Wine, Lemon Lime Bitters, or on the rock type drinks. Avoid sugary drinks at all costs.
- If you want to burn that spare tire, I recommend avoiding alcohol altogether. If you are trying to lose weight, then try sticking to one glass of wine a night or only a few drinks on a “party night”.
- Remember that alcohol can interfere with healthy sleep, so plan to take a few extra hours of sleep after your “party night”
- If you have a particularly bad night, try using a meal replacement shake to support weight loss. Meal replacements can give your body the necessary break from metabolic stress and flushing out the toxic alcohol with loads of water.
Why Cant You Remember Last Night?
Although it may seem that alcohol promotes fat loss when consumption of food is kept to a minimum, it is not a fat loss miracle. That being said, its also not the evil fattening drink that many believe it to be. So, for now, keep alcohol to a minimum and if you throw a few glasses of red wine over the weekend, don’t worry too much about it, go ahead and enjoy it.
All alcohol is partially broken down in the stomach and then passed into the small intestine. From there, it quickly passes into the bloodstream. ADH helps to convert alcohol into acetaldehyde, a toxic chemical that can make a person feel ill. Acetaldehyde breaks down quite rapidly under normal conditions, although if it accumulates in the body, there are intense feelings of nausea and sometimes lead to worse results. Acetaldehyde is rapidly converted to acetate by many other enzymes and is eventually metabolized to carbon dioxide and water.
People who drink too much alcohol normally suffer from a hangover the following day. The primary cause of a hangover is dehydration, as alcohol acts as a diuretic so it makes sense that adding caffeinated mixes like Redbull can increase the risk of an even stronger hangover. This means increased urine output from your kidneys. Classic resulting symptoms of a hangover include: headache, irritability, nausea, fatigue, dehydration, body aches, vomiting, dizziness, loss of appetite, and diarrhea.
Alcohol can cause memory loss after just a few drinks. Large amounts of alcohol, especially when consumed quickly and on an empty stomach, can produce a blackout. I guess the quote “eating is cheating” says it all. So a blackout is an interval of time in which a drunk person cannot remember the details of the events – or even the entire night – the next day. A blackout is not a situation where one becomes unconscious. Conversely, a person may be quite awake and fully aware of binge drinking. Blackouts are much more common among social drinkers than ever before and should be viewed as a serious consequence of acute intoxication regardless of age.
The Good and Bad Side Effects of Alcohol
There can be positives and negatives when it comes to drinking alcohol. Drinking in moderation should not cause you any serious problems as long as you do not drink too much. Recent evidence has shown that drinking red wine can help increase HDL, which is good cholesterol. Drinking alcohol makes us feel more confident and less nervous so we can relax and this is a huge help for socially shy people.
Drinking too much alcohol can have many negative health effects on the body. There are instant side effects and durable side effects. The immediate side effects are impaired vision, slurred speech, and loss of coordination. Alcohol can also make you fat because it contains too many calories and is easy to over-consume. It also affects the brain by killing brain cells. Long-term effects of drinking can affect the liver. It is the role of vital organs to remove toxins from the body. Alcohol is actually a poison and during the process within the liver, It produces a substance called acetaldehyde. This byproduct is very toxic to the body. Over time, alcohol consumption can cause liver disease or is known as liver cirrhosis.
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