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Anyone have first hand experience with the consuming alcohol while dieting ?

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bobby5112
bobby5112 Posts: 10
edited October 2014 in Health and Weight Loss
I lost 25 pounds in 6 weeks (205-180) while getting ready for and recovering from back surgery. The weight loss was intentional. I know 25 pounds in 6 weeks is too fast, but it just happened without much effort. I had stopped all alcohol during that period because of the drugs my doctor had prescribed.

But then I had 10 more pounds to go when my lower back got back to semi-normal. That is when I pulled out my fitbit.force and setup a plan on their web site. With meticulous calorie counting I have been consuming a 1200 daily calorie deficit for 2 additional months with a loss of 7 pounds and doing 2 or 3 mile daily walks. I believe that is slow weight loss for a1200 daily deficit. I have wondered if the assumed 2600 daily average expenditure is inflated from my reality.

To the question . . how badly can 2 glasses of wine or equivalent "spirits" during dinner hour mess up a diet plan, provided that the calorie count is accounted for. I have read about the effects of alcohol on diets, but have never heard from anyone with first hand experience.

Or have others had first hand experience with a calory counting plan not meeting expectations of a planned calorie deficit program.

Replies

  • BusyRaeNOTBusty
    BusyRaeNOTBusty Posts: 7,166 Member
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    No. If accounted for in your calories it will not derail your success. Yes, I have successfully lost weight in the pass while drinking in moderation (and occasionally not in moderation).
  • _runnerbean_
    _runnerbean_ Posts: 640 Member
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    If your alcohol calories are logged carefully they shouldn't slow down your weight loss. Are you measuring the glasses of wine? I know myself that I pour about double of what a "glass" of wine should measure ! I note that you are walking every day- that's great. Are you eating back all your exercise calories? MFP tends to over estimate exercise calories so try eating back half of what you log as exercise to see if that makes a difference.
  • MelanieRBrace
    MelanieRBrace Posts: 245 Member
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    Great post as I was wondering the same thing. Does alcohol affect metabolism?
  • sjaplo
    sjaplo Posts: 974 Member
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    Ditto - I drink at least 36oz of craft beer a day and I'm down 22lbs. Just fit it in if you want it.
  • SarcasmIsMyLoveLanguage
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    Has no effect whatsoever if it fits into your calorie goals. I love my red wine and will not give it up. I've dropped 41 lbs since mid June, so obviously no effect.
  • richardheath
    richardheath Posts: 1,276 Member
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    bobby5112 wrote: »
    But then I had 10 more pounds to go when my lower back got back to semi-normal. That is when I pulled out my fitbit.force and setup a plan on their web site. With meticulous calorie counting I have been consuming a 1200 daily calorie deficit for 2 additional months with a loss of 7 pounds and doing 2 or 3 mile daily walks. I believe that is slow weight loss for a1200 daily deficit. I have wondered if the assumed 2600 daily average expenditure is inflated from my reality.

    To the question . . how badly can 2 glasses of wine or equivalent "spirits" during dinner hour mess up a diet plan, provided that the calorie count is accounted for. I have read about the effects of alcohol on diets, but have never heard from anyone with first hand experience.

    Or have others had first hand experience with a calory counting plan not meeting expectations of a planned calorie deficit program.

    Where does the 2600 come from?

    7 lb in 2 months (about 1 lb per week) is a healthy rate of weight loss. But, if you are actually eating 1,200 and your TDEE including exercise is really 2,600 then you might expect to lose more (that's a large 1,400 deficit!). I'd guess that your TDEE is actually lower than 2,600.

    But to answer your question: no, alcohol, properly logged, will not affect your rate of loss. I drank beer and lost 40 lbs. I just didn't drink as much, because calories.
  • MelanieRBrace
    MelanieRBrace Posts: 245 Member
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    That's good to hear, I would have a hard time giving it up too. Thanks for the posts.
  • Onesnap
    Onesnap Posts: 2,819 Member
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    We brew our own beer at home (grow our own hops) and also make our own wine and mead. Just log what you drink and work it into your day. Keep in mind that there's areas of the world where people drink on their work breaks and have wine or beer with lunch and dinner. It's just in the culture and many of those countries have lower obesity rates than the US. :smiley:
  • 365andstillalive
    365andstillalive Posts: 663 Member
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    Alcohol does and doesn't affect weight loss. Alcohol interferes with metabolic pathways, which is a fancy way of saying that when given the choice, your body will burn the alcohol calories first over fat, but with as large a deficit as you're running, this isn't likely to be a large issue for you.

    I've lost 70lbs, and I do still drink. Though, I'll admit it typically isn't often. The odd drink is certainly not going to slow you down, but a full night of drinking can easily wipe away your deficit for the week (as I've experienced the past two weeks at weddings with open bars and as I'm about to experience the next two weekends between camping and Oktoberfest).

    Everything in moderation, right? A good tip is to permanently mark the wine glass you're going to use with a 5oz mark (which would be the appropriate measurements for a glass of wine).
  • TheStephil
    TheStephil Posts: 858 Member
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    Alcohol does not affect weight loss.

    I believe you are probably underestimating how many calories you are consuming. Are you measuring your wine/alcohol correctly? Are you weighing your solid foods on a food scale?
  • ChefSteveUrso
    ChefSteveUrso Posts: 84 Member
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    I've lost 66lbs. so far and usually have 2 becks light or 2 sangria per day, never more than that. I used to be a real heavy drinker. 2 drinks doesn't effect my weight loss, and I never log it. In fact it helps me to keep from snacking before dinner. But different people sometimes react differently, so experiment. See if there's a difference when you abstain. Also most people seem to lose weight faster in the beginning and then it slows down.
  • RSEC75
    RSEC75 Posts: 45 Member
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    I sometimes have a couple of glasses of wine with a meal that is otherwise low in calories, and I log the wine calories and try to fit them in my goal.

    Doesn't seem to have affected my weight loss. I still loose in the weeks I've done that once or twice, same as weeks I haven't.
  • Sabine_Stroehm
    Sabine_Stroehm Posts: 19,263 Member
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    I had wine with dinner throughout my loss. It may slow you down a bit, but shouldn't be an issue. What IS an issue is the last ten. :) Those are always harder. The window is smaller, and the margin of error is less. Aim for losing 0.5LBS a week now and be patient. Good luck!
  • bobby5112
    bobby5112 Posts: 10
    edited October 2014
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    Where does the 2600 come from?

    When you plug in your age, height, weight and activity level, Fitbit and MyFitness Pal calculate a daily calory burn. For me its around 2600 per day.
    TheStephil wrote: »
    Alcohol does not affect weight loss.

    I believe you are probably underestimating how many calories you are consuming. Are you measuring your wine/alcohol correctly? Are you weighing your solid foods on a food scale?

    I weight, measure and count everything including the ounces of wine or vodka consumed. My wife who has just lost 25 on nutrisystem says I'm obsessive about it. I tend to round UP on the measurements or calorie count for most things just to make sure. A lot of the industry calory standards are questionable. Like a chicken wing has to many variable, bases on it size and how much fat were rendered during grilling . . yet figures are quoted for chicken wings of unspecified size.