How does alcohol affect my diet results?

Alcohol effect on Fat-Loss 

  • Increases Calories: Drinking alcohol contributes to your daily calorie intake. Plus, you’re more likely to indulge in high-calorie, high-fat foods, which further drives you into a calorie surplus.
    • 1 typical beer (12 ounces), 1 typical shot (1 ounce), and 1 typical glass of wine (5 ounces) each contain well over 100 calories. Note that this doesn’t include mixers used.
  • Stops Fat Loss: When you consume alcohol, your body dedicates time and energy to expelling it, and literally pauses fat loss while it does so (by decreasing fat utilization, and increasing fat storage). Clearly not the best recipe for fat loss.

Alcohol effect on Muscle Building and Recovery

  • Decreases Muscle Building: Alcohol directly limits protein synthesis, otherwise known as the building of new proteins for muscle tissue.
  • Impairs Sleep Quality: Alcohol impairs sleep quality by increasing time spent in “light” sleep (from which we’re more likely to wake up) and decreasing time spent in “deep” sleep. Deep sleep promotes recovery much more profoundly than light sleep and missing out on it is costly.
  • Decreased Growth Hormone Production: Alcohol minimizes production of growth hormone, which is released during sleep and plays a crucial role in muscle building and recovery. So, the more you drink, the more growth hormone is suppressed.

Can I drink alcohol, if so, what's the best type?

To maximize progress, it’s recommended that you don’t drink while dieting. If you do decide to drink, do not exceed 1 – 2 drinks per week. Alcohol consumption will significantly delay progress. Even though red wine has been shown to provide antioxidant benefits, it still imposes the detrimental effects. While we recommend abstinence for best diet results, if you can’t avoid drinking for a special occasion, go for diet soda mixers with hard liquors, and stay away from beers and wines, especially if drinking more than 1-2 drinks. 

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