You have been working out consistently and are feeling good, you feel stronger and have more energy. Your diet is on point as you keep your portions controlled and take in lean meats, fruits and vegetables most of the time. But you are still not getting results you want. What could be the issue?
Have you thought about your alcoholic beverage intake?
Some people are just so used to sitting down to dinner with a glass of wine or getting home from work and mixing a cocktail that they don’t give it a second thought. If you were to take a look at your food and drink intake to see where those extra calories are coming from- you may see how obvious it is. For anyone trying to watch calories, alcohol does not help. While many people turn down second helpings or desserts, the drink they are holding may have more calories than the slice of cake they just turned down.
Not only does the actual drink have more calories, but the effects of the drink(s) may stimulate you to eat more, therefore taking in additional calories from your food. You may lose your inhibitions and indulge in foods less nutritious. Another thing to consider is that alcohol can cause dehydration. Your body is not as successful at processing fat when it’s not properly hydrated. (2)
How many calories are you drinking?
This list shows calories based on choice of drink. Remember, size matters. A six ounce cup of pina colada will not have the same calories as a huge glass of pina colada-good thing those umbrellas don’t have calories.
Can you enjoy a drink while maintaining or trying to lose weight? Just like with food, you need to consider moderation. Here are some other ways that you can still enjoy a drink without sabotaging your diet.
Pace yourself. Out for a long night? Try drinking slowly and alternating each drink with water or seltzer. This will also help keep you hydrated.
Check the calories. Opt for lower calorie drinks or drink from smaller glasses. Consider your food calories for the day and try to balance them.
Mindless Eating. While at home, try not to make food choices after you have been drinking. If you are eating with your meal, serve everything before hand and put the rest away. If you are out, try to push away the snacks at the bar- out of sight, out of mind. (1)
Designated Driver. There is nothing wrong with having a great night out and not drinking. You can offer to drive, this way you already know it’s planned that you will not be having a drink.
Use smart strategies so that you can enjoy a drink while keeping you on track with your fitness goals. If you have questions or need help with your fitness routine, contact us.
- “ 7 Ways to Keep Alcohol from Ruining Your Diet”. Accessed 29, March 2017. Health.com. http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20757335,00.html/view-all#prevent-mindless-munching-0
- “Dehydration and Alcohol”. Accessed 30, March 2017. Gastrolyte.com. https://gastrolyte.com.au/dehydration/dehydration-and-alcohol/
- Image Source and Credit: “How Many Calories Are In Your Drink?”