Did you know you can still lose weight without losing the wine?. These are probably two things you didn’t think could fit together in the same sentence, right? WRONG! The idea of giving up your favourite tipple can be extremely daunting for many. We are here to tell you that the claims are wrong. Alcohol can absolutely remain as part of your favourite treats for the week. It is about how it is consumed and what with that matters most! Check it out.
Wine has a bad rep when it comes to the health world. But depriving yourself of that sweet grape juice isn’t all that fun, right? When Friday night rolls around after a long week dealing with Zoom call after Zoom call, emails galore, screaming kids, or simply just the weekly annoyances of the world, that sweet glass of wine or refreshing beer is often a necessary sweet relief. We get it!
It is a super common question that we get within our member community, “Do I have to give up wine?” or “How do I factor my favourite drink into my weight loss and health goals?” We’ve got all the answers!
Alcohol’s Bad Rep with the Health World
Alcohol isn’t the devil here. Alcohol is essentially the predisposition when it comes to what happens next. It is no secret that self-control and our inhibitions can be drastically lessened when alcohol is brought into the picture. We can see you nodding your head along there. Are a few memories popping up?
Often ‘just one glass’ can lead to a bottle. And more often than not, the food that accompanies alcohol is not a lean protein and steamed vegetables.
Let’s face it… burritos and cheese boards are the foods that we crave after or whilst we enjoy a few drinks. Suddenly, we aren’t too worried about eating a whole pizza. There is absolutely no guilt here. Life happens! This is okay… sometimes. For most people, even the fittest of the fit, weekends often become more of a ‘blow out’. More socialising and less routine can sometimes affect the hard work you have put in during the week.
It has to be remembered that most alcohol, especially wine, isn’t the most bang for your buck when it comes to your calorie consumption for the day. One glass of white wine is approximately 100 calories. But when a few glasses of bubbly are consumed along with platefuls of beautiful dishes at the weekend’s dinner party, suddenly your whole day’s worth of calories are consumed within a couple of hours. Ouch!
Another big reason alcohol is thought of as something that essentially should be eliminated when trying to lose weight is because of its nutritional value. To put it simply… it has none. Our bodies don’t know what to do with it, as it doesn’t provide us with any nutritional benefit, apart from maybe making us a bit more confident and loving…
Our complex and amazing bodies are created to know what to do with almost everything we consume. It knows what to do with protein after a big session in the gym, what to do with carbs when we need that energy to get through the day, and even what to do with your essential morning coffee each day – CRUCIAL! But alcohol is a little different. When alcohol enters your body, it is immediately seen as a toxin. And what is your body designed to do with these toxic baddies? Get rid of them!
The mix of alcohol and the greasy, high energy foods that often go along with alcohol is ultimately not the best combo. Essentially, it halts almost all of your body’s metabolic tendencies, not doing what it should do to keep you healthy as it is working in overtime to move the alcohol out as quickly as possible.
So how do we stop alcohol being the bad guy?
Of course, we have to respect that constant drinking to excess and issues with weight gain and health issues are absolutely linked. But the main word here to focus on is ‘excess’. Drinking to excess means that you are consuming quite large amounts of calories from alcohol, and almost always in turn, from food also.
Small changes can be made to enjoy your alcohol, whilst also keeping up with your health and weight loss goals! If you know that you are going out for dinner and drinks this Friday, factor that into your calorie for the day! Eat a little less than normal to allow you to enjoy your evening without thinking too much about what you are consuming. It is the weekend, after all!
Similarly, if you know you are keen to have a glass of chardonnay with dinner that night, factor in about 120 calories of your daily calories towards that glass! Just like many things in life, it is all about compromise and all about balance! You could even ask yourself, would I prefer a glass of wine or some chocolate tonight?
Often alcohol and yummy food does go together quite nicely. Another super simple way to give your body the time and energy it needs to process your food and alcohol is to separate the two. If you know you want to enjoy a glass or two one night, try having your dinner a bit earlier, and your wine an hour or two later to allow your body to start the digestion process before it starts trying to detoxify the alcohol from your body!
Portion control can come into play with your alcohol too. Do you free pour or measure out your wine? One standard glass of wine is about 100ml. When it comes to free pouring into your larger glasses at home, it can very easily double! Even purchasing some smaller glasses for your home can help.
Lastly, spread out your drinks. When out at a dinner party, try and space out your drinks to about an hour apart. This will allow your body to digest the alcohol that bit better, as well as keeping you a little more in control. Your sober self probably doesn’t want that third plate of cake! But tipsy you… keep them coming.
Of course, remember too, alcohol types come in at different energy levels. Something like champagne you will find is one of the lowest-calorie wine options available at about 90 calories, and when it comes to spirits something like a vodka lime soda will set you back only 80 calories. Whereas sugar-filled cocktails can take up a few hundred! Be aware of this when choosing what to drink. Many beers, wines and ciders have lower carb and calorie options now. #winning
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