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The Sobering Truth of Alcohol and Fat Loss

Alcohol! The cause of … and solution to … all of life’s problems! - Homer Simpson

Well Homer, you’re half right. Alcohol may be a brief solution in that it definitely impacts your mood (hopefully positively) for a brief period of time.

The problem is everything AFTER that brief moment of pleasure. The hangover, the lethargy, the bloating, and yes … the weight gain.

It is literally IMPOSSIBLE to lose weight while drinking alcohol. But why? Why can’t you enjoy a cosmo or a whiskey or beer while maintaining your gains? Here are 5 reasons why Alcohol is destroying your diet:

1 - Your Body Stops Burning Fat

Picture it! You’re out for a fun night of dancing (and drinking). You’ve got your dance shoes on and a martini in hand. Your heart is pumping! You’re definitely sweating! You must be burning calories, right?!

Well, turns out, you’re not. If you drink, your body will first and foremost only burn the sugar from the alcohol as energy as opposed to your stored fat. See the problem?!

You’re literally doing exercise and getting zero benefits from it. Instead of entering a caloric deficit and a phase of fat burning, your body is working overtime just to burn up all the excess sugar from those yummy libations.

Why waste all this energy and get zero of the benefits?

2 - Did I Mention All That Sugar?

Beer, margaritas, mixed drinks, all contain massive amounts of sugar. What’s the most likely outcome of ingesting excess sugar? Weight gain! The sugar may give you a brief energy boost but will ultimately lead to a lethargic crash where all you want to do is sit, thus becoming stored in your body as fat.

You’ve worked so hard to shed those first few pounds by eating clean for weeks! Why spoil it with a big cup of sugar and empty calories?!

3 - Your Sleep Will Suffer

Say it with me now, ‘You cannot lose weight if you do not get a good night’s sleep’. Your body will literally shut down its ability to burn fat if you are not sleeping. As you probably know by now, alcohol (especially consumed at night before bed) can lead to terrible, restless sleep sessions. Without high quality sleep, you won’t be able to burn fat and continue your weight loss.

4 - Alcohol Can Promote Binge Eating

‘What’s going on? I wasn’t hungry before I started drinking but, now that I’ve had a few, those nachos sound pretty good, am I right?’ - You Right Before Ordering Nachos and Destroying Your Caloric Plan

In most people, alcohol impacts your ability to think clearly. It erases your inhibitions and gives your free rein to make all sorts of horrible decisions. For the purposes of weight loss, it often leads to out of control, mindless eating in the name of chemical and sensory overload.

Diets are about will power. Adding alcohol to the mix can destroy that will power and lead to rapid weight gain via binge eating.

5 - The Day After Drinking

Hangovers … they are real. Even if you manage to get out of bed the next day, you’re not going to be 100%. Your daily activity, your training, your entire routine will be negatively impacted by the previous night. Even your recovery will be slowed due to your body being dehydrated and processing all of that excess sugar.

Not only are you breaking your calorie plan, you’re spending the next 2-3 days just getting back to your baseline and pushing your weight loss goals further and further away.

In conclusion, Alcohol is in no way, shape, or form conducive to fat loss. It is nothing but a stumbling block between you and your goals. If you really want to achieve your fitness goals, you have to take a break from the booze and stick to the plan.

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