I just finished up my Drug Prevention course during spring semester so I thought I would blog about some of the lesser known facts about alcohol. Drug Prevention really should have been called “a class that teaches you about the ass-backwards laws in America on certain drugs and the fear tactics, rather than facts, that have been used in an attempt to prevent drug abuse” but I guess that title was too long. So that’s probably why they went with Drug Prevention. Next, I am in no way judging anyone. Here’s the way I feel about “guilty pleasures” (i.e. alcohol). If you f*ing like something, LIKE IT! It really irritates me when I hear someone making justification for a potentially problematic behavior with a ridiculously weak argument. Like something, whatever! Be open and honest about it.
Alcohol is 7kcal/gram. Carbs and protein are 4 kcal/gram and fat is 9. Alcohol is sort of like liquid fat. Alcohol cannot be used by most cells so it has to be metabolized by the liver, so basically alcohol is providing you absolutely zero benefits…health wise.
It doesn’t help you sleep, and it doesn’t keep you warm. Moderate drinking may bring on onset of sleep, but the sleep will be restless. Alcohol interferes with REM sleep. Eating a meal with alcohol doesn’t lessen the affects of it. All food does is slows the rate of absorption in the small intestine, that’s it. 90% of alcohol is absorbed in the small intestine.
I’m only approaching this from a weight loss/health goal perspective. Bottom line. ALCOHOL IS NOT GOOD FOR YOU! If you heard on the radio that red wine can reduce your risk of heart disease, you were misinformed. Those studies have been challenged. There were too many inaccurate variables. Besides, an enormous amount of evidence shows that drinking alcohol raises health risks more than offset any possible benefits.
I get the attraction. It’s a social lubricant. We like the taste of it. We like the way it makes us feel. Me, personally, I prefer the “pick me up” from caffeine. That’s my kinda high. But that’s just me. But I also don’t believe in absolutes. Don’t completely eliminate something you love from your diet. Yes, I believe it is possible to achieve your health and fitness goals while still being able to enjoy alcohol in moderation (key word being moderation). I just sort of feel this social obligation to inform others that if you have a weight loss goal of 1-1.5 lb per week and are reducing your calories, including more physical activity (i.e. exercise) then go and booze it up on the weekend, you can completely negate all of the positive you did during the week. Sorry to be Debbie Downer but yes, that is possible. Drinking too much can completely derail your fitness goals very easily. The attached picture is a joke. I do believe anything is possible. However, having ab definition and drinking an entire six pack of beer will not co-exist together for very long…at all. The other pictures are just to show off my awesome sense of humor.
So, how much is too much? If you do drink, what type of drinks should you drink? Hard to say. Body composition, size, being male or female all determine how much alcohol a person can handle. I’m not going to throw a number out there. We all have our “guilty pleasures”. I have mine. Just know the realities of drinking alcohol and trying to maintain a healthy body.
Feel free to message me with questions. I love hearing from people.
Think.Do.Be.crazy, healthy and happy! #health
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