That occasional drink that many of us enjoy may seem harmless enough, but do you know how much calories you’re consuming, or how the alcohol may be hindering your weight loss goals? If you don’t know the answer to these questions read on.
Alcohol and weight gain
Everything we put into our mouths whether to eat or drink (except for water) contains calories and alcohol is no exception to the rule. In fact alcohol is very high in calories at 7calories per gram of alcohol; this is almost as many calories as pure fat!
Alcohol has absolutely no nutritional value, can cause sugar and fat cravings and can promote weight gain. when we drink alcohol our bodies will process it first, that is before fats, carbs and protein, this is because our bodies simply cannot store alcohol, so to get rid of it the body will use it as energy this actually hinders our bodies ability to burn fat as our bodies will store our normal sources of energy (carbs and protein) protein and carbs as fat and use the alcohol instead.
How many calories?
To effectively loss weight we need to be consuming 250-500calories less per day. We are told that we should limit our drinking to 1-2 glasses of alcohol per day, but this amount can seriously hinder our weight loss plans and actually cause us to pack on extra kilos.
This table will show you the amount of calories in a serve of alcohol and how many minutes of running it will take to burn these calories off.
|Alcoholic Drink||Serving||Calories per serve||Alcohol per serve||Time running|
|Light Beer||375ml||94cal||8.3g||9 minutes|
|White Wine||200ml glass||189cal||18.3g||18minutes|
|Red Wine||200ml glass||133cal||18.3g||12minutes|
|Spirits||1 shot (30mls)||60cal||12g||6minutes|
So as you can see you will need to spend 13minutes running to burn off one glass of beer. Think it doesn’t seem bad? Well do you actually go out running? And how many serves are you having? Most of the time people don’t stop at one drink and there is where we start to run into trouble. If you drink a whole 6 pack of beer your looking at 925caloires consumed and 1hr and 18mins of running to burn it off. Keep in mind that this is ON TOP of your daily calorie intake and exercise schedule.
What should I drink?
Ideally we wouldn’t drink alcohol at all, but this approach is not for everyone. If you do enjoy kicking back and having a couple of drinks then there are some simple tips to help your reduce the overall calorie intake.
- Drink low calorie alcoholic beverages- there are companies out there that make low calorie versions of drinks. These are usually called “light” or “low calorie” and will result in a much smaller beer belly.
- Choose soda water, fresh juice or low calorie drinks to use as your mixers if you like your spirits.
- Drink water in between every alcoholic drink will reduce your total calorie intake and reduce the amount of alcohol you’re drinking, meaning less of a headache in the morning.
So now you know the answers! Alcohol is full of calories, promotes weight gain and is nutritionally worthless, not to mention toxic. You don’t have to be dieting to watch your calorie intake, start now and you may not have to diet in the future!