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Alcohol and weight loss

May 11, 2008

Hello everyone!

I can’t believe I’ve gone this long without discussing one of my favorite topics-alcohol consumption and weight loss. If you love your wine and spirits, you may not like me after reading this article, but I am here to tell you the truth, not to blow smoke up your…well, you know.

After a certain age, very few people can get away with eating anything they’d like. It is a way of life, and one that we have to accept. As the metabolism slows down ever so slightly, we must decrease our caloric consumption in order to remain the same weight. If we do not do this, the pounds will slowly but surely creep on.

When I take on a new client, one of the first questions I ask them is what they are eating and if they drink alcohol. Over a period of time, the calories from alcohol do add up. A drink or two a night may not seem like a lot, but over a span of time (let me say it again), those calories DO ADD UP. And if you are not cutting back elsewhere on calories, you will definitely see those calories in the form of extra pounds on your body.

As much as we don’t want to hear it, alcohol is not a good addition to one’s diet if you want to be as lean and healthy as possible. Not only does alcohol contain calories that are completely void of nutrients, it can also affect hormone action.

Hormones help to maintain a constant concentration of glucose in the blood, and alcohol consumption interferes with all three glucose sources and with the actions of the regulatory hormones. Alcohol can disrupt blood sugar levels, increases insulin secretion (especially when paired with sugar consumption, which sometimes does happen after a bout of drinking, due to increases inhibitions), and cause temporary hypoglycemia.

There is so much research in regards to alcohol and weight gain, its effects on the body, etc. I’ve read a study that claims alcohol slows down fat loss because after a small portion of alcohol calories are converted to fat, the liver then converts it to a substance called acetate, which puts the brakes on fat loss. I always look for the science behind a study, and then make conclusions based on what I find.

With alcohol, it’s pretty simple-most of us simply do not burn enough calories in any given day to afford the extra calories that a spirit provides.

To sum it up, and to put it quite simply, if you really want the body you desire, excess alcohol consumption will keep you from achieving your goals and desires. I know there are other cultures who drink large amounts of alcohol and seem to stay slim, and I also understand that there are many thin people who can get away with drinking alcohol as they wish.

But please do not compare yourselves to these people or cultures. If you are having a hard time losing weight, or if you are not satisfied with your current condition, take a closer look at how many calories per week you are consuming in alcohol. The number may surprise you!

Oh, and Happy Mother’s Day!


One Comment leave one →
  1. Corsair YC permalink
    May 12, 2008 6:37 pm

    Yeah, yeah… I KNOW you wrote this just for me!

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