For a lot of people reading this the time that they cherish the most is the time that is spent having fun with their friends. And I'm sure that most people reading this will remember those times like they were yesterday (for some people, those times may have actually been yesterday). It's a Friday night and you just got home from work, all that you can think about is going to the nearest bar or club with your closest friends to hammer down some drinks and let out a week's worth of stress and frustrations. These times are memorable indeed but the truth of the matter is that the consumption of alcohol, even in small amounts, is the nightmare of anybody trying to follow a nutrition plan geared towards weight loss. In this article I will explain why alcohol is considered a nutritional nightmare and offer a few ways to cope with its nutritional effects if you must have a drink or four!
First and foremost alcohol contains absolutely no nutritional value, and boasts a stunning 7 calories per gram! That means that for every gram that you drink, you are taking in 7 calories of nothing. At least when you are eating a French fry you are taking in 7 calories of carbohydrates and fat; at the bare minimum you are receiving energy from the carbohydrates. When drinking alcohol imagine that you are wasting your calories because you are not getting anything nutritionally related from it. If you can imagine a full bottle of water as the amount of calories that you can consume, you can imagine that with every sip of alcohol you are emptying that bottle and lessening the amount of calories that you are allowed to consume.
Secondly, alcohol has effects on your body that mimic the effects that a diuretic has on your body. This means that those 6 or 7 bottles of water that you drink everyday to keep hydrated will be wasted! It must also be noted that when you lose water from your body, you are also losing countless quality vitamins and minerals with it. If you take the time to read the article What Vitamins To Take On A Daily Basis, you will be able to see the importance of your vitamins and minerals.
On top of everything else, your body and digestion system react differently to alcohol than any other food or beverage; when you drink anything except for alcohol, your digestive system sorts out al of the proteins, fats, and carbohydrates, and organizes them according to what can be used, and what will be stored. However, when alcohol is consumed, it sneaks to the front of the line in front of al of the other nutrients and gets digested first. Since the digestion of alcohol in the liver is such a slow process, the digestive system stores much more fat and carbohydrates in the "storage area", which is ultimately what leads to belly bulges and love handles.
Those are all some of the negative effects of alcohol on one's ability to lose weight. Many people associate alcohol with being drunk or happy; however, it is very rare to hear anybody associating alcohol with negative health effects. I am in no way saying to never have a sip of alcohol, because even I enjoy the occasional drink. I am however, saying that the next time that you are about to have a few alcoholic drinks, think to yourself- is this happy hour worth the sad months of calorie cutting that I will have to do to eliminate the effects of these drinks on my body? Are you willing to sacrifice, or deal with the consequences?