Alcohol and Your Weight
At Be Fit Food one of our most commonly asked questions is 'can I drink alcohol and still lose weight?'
The answer is yes, but it may impact on your weight loss results. Like everything, it depends on the type and amount of alcohol you are drinking. For our Be Fit Food clients doing one of our very low-calorie diet (VLCD) programs such as Be Rapid, or Metabolism reset consuming alcohol on the program can slow your weight loss results. We don’t advise alcohol consumption during a VLCD program. However, if you do want to consume it, like anything we recommend alcohol consumption in moderation.
The reason alcohol can impact your weight loss outcomes is because it adds excess calories and carbohydrates to your diet with little to no nutritional benefit (2). It can also cause you to transition out of mild nutritional ketosis due to the calories and carbohydrate (sugar content) (1-2). Alcohol is an easier more accessible energy source, and your body tries to metabolise it as quickly as possible (2). This can cause you to transition out of nutritional ketosis (fat burning state), which means you are halting your fat loss.
Additionally, alcohol is very calorie dense and the type of food we tend to pair with alcohol consumption are energy dense, high fat and salty foods which are all extras foods that add minimal nutritional benefit to your diet (2). These foods are not only calorie dense, but often high in refined carbohydrates and your body will store these carbohydrates, making it harder for you to get back into mild nutritional ketosis. We advise against the regular consumption of these extras foods and drinks and to be mindful of portion sizes.
If you would like an occasional alcoholic drink, it would be best to opt for a low carbohydrate spirit such as vodka with soda water and lime.
Another alternative is a glass of red wine as supported by the Mediterranean diet (3). We understand you can be on our meal programs for quite some time and social events and special occasions arise. It is completely up to you how you would like to approach them. Moderation and balance is key!
Make sure to book your 15 minute complimentary dietitian consultation to find out more.
- Chao M, Wadden A. T, Tronieri J, Berkowitz R. Alcohol Intake and Weight Loss During Intensive Lifestyle Intervention for Adults with Overweight or Obesity and Diabetes [internet]. Obesity: a research journal. 2019 Jan; 27 (1): 30-40.
- Flatt J.P Ph.D. Body Weight, Fat Storage, and Alcohol Metabolism. Nutrition reviews. 1992 Sep; 50 (9): 267-270
- Sayon‐Orea C, Martinez‐Gonzalez A, Bes‐Rastrollo M. Alcohol consumption and body weight: a systematic review. Nutrition Reviews. 2011 Aug; 69 (8): 419-431.