Should You Drink Alcohol When Dieting?

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

You have to be mindful of the food and drinks you consume when you’re on a diet. Most diet programs ban alcoholic beverages because these drinks are extremely high in calories. For instance, beer is incredibly high in sugar. The same can be said for mixed cocktails.

How Alcoholic Beverage Results in Weight Gain

Excess Calories Converted to Fat

The body uses the food we eat for energy. But excessive calories are often stored as fat and this leads to weight gain. For example, say you drank a 500-calorie alcoholic beverage. Your body won’t burn off this drink right away. You have to factor in the food you eat. You might absorb some of the calories from the food and drink you consumed, but not all of it. And the excess calories will accumulate on your belly, thighs and buttocks.

Increasing Appetite

Did you know drinking alcohol could trigger you to eat more? That’s right, alcoholic beverages can increase the appetite. That’s why you feel famished after a night spent drinking with friends. And you end up eating more than you intended to when you’re drunk. When inhibitions are lowered, you end up losing track of the food you eat.

Mindless Eating

It’s hard to think about your diet when you’re being offered foods as you drink with friends. For instance, your friend ordered appetizers on a night out. You are more likely to mindlessly wolf down high-calorie foods when there’s alcohol involved. You are also likely to continue drinking throughout the night because you are no longer thinking straight.

Alcoholic Drinks to Drink When Dieting

Generally, alcoholic beverages are high in calories. However, not all alcoholic beverages will cause you to gain weight. Knowing what kind of alcohol to drink when you’re on a diet will help you stay on track. Hard liquor like vodka, whiskey, tequila, and brandy are all low in calories when taken in moderation. The same thing goes for scotch, gin, and rum. Adding these alcoholic drinks to fruit juices, fizzy drinks, syrups or any other mixes will increase their caloric rate.

Meanwhile, beer, wine and liqueurs rank the highest in caloric rate. So avoid these drinks if you are trying to watch what you drink. But light beer is lower in calories than average lager. Still, make sure to keep an eye on how much light beer you drink to keep your caloric intake down on a night out.

How to Drink Alcohol and Still Lose Weight

If you must drink, we recommend counting the calories to track your progress. Compensate by minimizing the consumption of high-calorie foods and always incorporate alcoholic beverages to your diet plan.

Another tip is to limit the numbers of alcoholic beverages you consume. Instead of 10 shots of pure spirits, limit it to three. You’re less likely to make a bad decision if you are sober.

Finally, try not to drink and eat at the same time. You’d be surprised at how many calories you unknowingly take when you combine eating with drinking alcohol! The key is to make better choices, even when you’re at the bar.  Don’t order bottle after bottle of beer together with a platter of chicken wings. Always order foods and drinks that are not greasy, fried or high in fat.

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