There also could be a sense of denial that drinking could be the culprit which ironically can make drinkers drink more! Deep down I believe most people know when their alcohol consumption is affecting their weight.
Here is the other issue, which most people are not aware of…. Drinking alcohol stops you burning fat!
Alcohol interrupts the bodies normal function of firstly searching for fat reserves to lose weight. In other words, when you drink, the body sees the booze as a quick energy source rather than your fat cells. It uses the calories from booze first!… and therefore the fat cells remain!! Which is why when you cut out alcohol with the goal of losing weight – just this one change can prove to have a dramatic result on weight loss. Then you add into the mix while drinking alcohol a packet of peanuts, chips or cheese and crackers which are laden with fat… your body will store the excess fat from the food because it is busy using the alcohol for the quick energy fix. Frustratingly the drinker who is dieting doesn’t understand why belly fat isn’t shifting and it can’t because alcohol interferes with this natural weight loss strategy.
Alcohol calories come in the shape of sugars and when your body consumes too many sugars it will lead to weight gain.
We know sugar is addictive, so once that couple of glasses has gone, our resolve tends to go and before we know it, we are eating chocolate and other high sugar and fatty foods.
However, the problem does not end there, it’s also the next day when you wake up feeling a little under par from drinking the night before and the carb cravings kick in… Double whammy!!
One of the biggest issues that come from drinking alcohol is dehydration. Alcohol is a diuretic, therefore it effects the body’s ability to keep its fluids up, it will try and divert any excess water to vital organs such as your skin. Your body is begging for fluids! So, if you want to wave goodbye to a puffy face and body, cutting out alcohol is a great fluid retention problem solver! It’s no surprise therefore that drinkers wake up in the morning, possibly after consuming one too many the night before (even after sticking to their calories) that they notice they have put on weight and become disheartened.
Now for the good news!
Saying that… there is absolutely nothing wrong with having the occasional drink while you are attempting to lose weight. It’s just being aware of what alcohol is doing to your body that holds you back from weight loss without realising it.
One of the best things you can possibly do and I know it is difficult for some of us, is to ‘promenade’. It’s a simple European activity which just means taking a walk after dinner and wine. Taking in the scenery which helps the body start to work through what you have just consumed. If you have not tried it before, I highly recommend it!
However, at the end of the day the last thing you might feel like is getting out and about after a long day to justify your calories from alcohol! It’s probably just easier to reduce it or cut out until you reach your goal.
So just by adding some extra exercise during your day to your weight loss plan could make a big difference if you fancy the odd glass or two.
Top Tips to stay on your diet without the booze
- Calculate how many calories you have saved each week to keep you motivated
- Add up all the money you have saved by not drinking and put it towards a special holiday or shopping spree
- Any hint of feeling tempted, keep an image of yourself slim, healthy and happy to remind you of your goal
- Avoid heavy drinking friends who might try and coerce you into drinking
- Find other things to entertain yourself in the evenings that make you feel good about yourself like reading that magazine or that book