Alcohol & Weight Gain: Does Alcohol Cause Weight Gain? Can We Drink & Still Lose Weight?Written by David MasifonPosted on 02 14, 2017
Can alcohol make us gain weight? Can we drink and still lose weight with regular workout and/or a diet? Well, we found out from diet doctor Mike Roussell, Phd that the answer to both questions is yes.
According to the seasoned nutritional consultant, yes, we can drink alcohol and lose weight as long as we’re smart about it. When looking into whether we’ll be able to lose weight and still drink our favourite wine, there are two things we need to consider: calories in alcohol and alcohol content.
Calories in alcohol
Let’s forget about the calories in wine or our favourite beer for a second, because for most people, the calories in the mixers of their favourite cocktails pose a far greater barrier to weight loss than the actual alcohol.
Just 4oz of some daiquiri or margarita mixes can contain upwards of 35 grams of sugar. That’s one valid reason we should make our own daiquiris instead. It’s 7 teaspoons of sugar! Plus, these drink mixes have more than double the amount of calories than the shot of rum or tequila included in the drink if you’re only served half a cup of mixer. What’s worse, the calories from mixers are the worst kinds of calories, simple and refined sugars. When they’re combined with how alcohol affects metabolism, it gets even worse.
Alcohol content in drink
One myth about alcohol is that it will make us fat. But the truth is, it’s the combination of alcohol and sugars found in mixers or the bar food often consumed with alcohol that causes weight gain problems. Alcohol contains calories, but it’s safe to assume that no one gains a lot of weight by throwing back shots of straight vodka. Instead, it is the metabolic priority that our bodies place on alcohol over carbohydrates and fats that causes the damage. Our bodies want to process alcohol before anything else, which has been shown to create a metabolic environment that is almost the opposite of the environment our body creates following exercise, which is one of high circulating levels of fat and inhibited fat burning.
While this may seem bad, there are benefits of alcohol. Moderate alcohol consumption increases our HDL cholesterol, and studies show that people who have a couple drinks each week live longer. So, here’s how drinking alcohol and losing weight can work:
When you drink, know your alcohol serving size. A glass of wine is not a glass filled to the brim, but 5oz. A red wine glass can hold 12-14oz when filled.
Minimize the calories from mixers. Make margaritas with real lime juice, use diet tonic water, or even the naturally calorie-free club soda instead of regular tonic water and other high-calorie carbonated drinks. These skinny margaritas will satisfy your craving, but still keep your weight loss program in check.
If you’re aggressively pursuing a weight loss goal, corral any drinks to your splurge meals to reduce their impact on your overall fat burning.