Weight loss tip: Reduce the alcohol

Weight loss tip 123 - Reduce the alcoholWeight loss tip 123 - Reduce the alcohol

Reducing the booze can help with weight loss.

Weight loss tip 123 - Reduce the alcohol

Weight loss tip 123 – Reduce the alcohol

Beer in a mug

Alcohol use is a common part of our social culture.  I myself, like to have a drink on occasion.  I would say that alcohol has some positive effects, but alcohol has quite a few well-documented deleterious effects to include addiction, diminished performance, mental impairment, and liver disease.  I have already written an article on the fact that you can drink alcohol in moderation and not gain weight.  All this being said, reducing alcohol may help you lose weight.   

Assuming you are drinking pure alcohol that is not a part of a mixed drink, alcohol has seven calories per gram.  Why is this important?  It is three calories more than the same unit of protein and carbohydrates and protein and almost as much as fat (2 calories less).  The point is that you only get calories and buzz so alcohol.  Our bodies convert the alcohol or ethanol to ethanal (acetaldehyde) and ethanoic acid (acetic acid).  Acetic acid is vinegar.  Our livers detoxify the acetaldehyde.  Acetic acid can be converted into Acetyl CoA which is used in fatty acid synthesis.  You can see that a good portion of alcohol is readily converted to fat and makes your risk of obesity high if you take in a lot of alcohol or excess calories.   

Alcohol also has to be burned before fat if it is present in the bloodstream.  I have seen people called it a preferred fuel over fats.  Either way, you must burn off all your alcohol calories before you start burning calories from the food you eat, thus inhibiting you burning fat which is what you want to burn when you are losing weight.  Also, alcohol calories can quickly add up especially if it is in the form of a craft beer and mixed drink.  Each of which can easily add 500 calories per 8-12 ounce serving.  Five hundred calories a night equates to 1 pound per week and 52 pounds per year.  I know most do not have a drink every night, but this illustrates how just one can have a huge impact.  

I suggest you not only cut back on alcohol but also make sure you do not replace it with another form of empty calories.  Obviously, if you replace it with Twinkies, you will pack on the pounds pretty quick.  If you cut out the booze and replace your favorite drink with fresh fruits and vegetables, the pounds will fly off.  The point is you must make lifestyle changes that are conducive to weight loss and maintenance.

The bottom line: Cutting out alcohol will help with weight loss as long as you do not replace the alcohol with other sources of empty calories.  Reduce you drinks and shed some pounds.  I have already written on research that shows that alcohol can be taken in moderation during a weight loss regimen.   

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About the Author

I am a family physician who has served in the US Army. In 2016, I found myself overweight, out of shape, and unhealthy, so I made a change to improve my health. This blog is the chronology of my path to better health and what I have learned along the way.

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