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Alcohol's effect on fat loss

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Rammer123
Rammer123 Posts: 679 Member
What are people's thoughts on this?

I think it most definetly does have a negative effect on fat loss and slows it down for sure, but I have found ways that work for me, to still incorporate drinks a couple times week and sustainably lose weight consistently.

Thoughts?
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Replies

  • RuNaRoUnDaFiEld
    RuNaRoUnDaFiEld Posts: 5,864 Member
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    Alcohol gets metabolised first by the body so in that sense it slows down fat loss.

    If I consume alcohol in the place of some of my calories then in the grand scheme of things it makes no real difference.
  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,842 Member
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  • STEVE142142
    STEVE142142 Posts: 867 Member
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    In my opinion it's a simple matter of staying within your calorie limit. You could lose weight eating Snickers bars and drinking vodka. On the other hand I wouldn't recommend that as far as what it would do to your body not the best idea.

    I'll give you my experience January 1st 2016 my weight was 288 lb. When on vacation in March ate too much drink too much definitely drank too much some days drank my calorie limit. Finally reached maintenance around September 2016 weighing about 200 lbs.Went on vacation to Puerto Rico in October for10 days same exact thing ate too much drink too much had a great time. January 2017 stayed with friends in Florida for approximately a week ate too much drink too much definitely drank my calorie limit a couple days. My current weight is about 208 lbs.

    In my opinion I think the reason alcohol slows down or increases weight is your simply going over your calories. Look at it this way 4 bottles of beer is probably the equivalent of eating one Big Mac from McDonald's or 5 beers can equal a large french fry from McDonald's.

    It also depends on what you're drinking if you're drinking beer or straight alcohol probably the calories are under 200 per serving but if you're having an exotic drink you could have a couple hundred maybe a thousand calories in there

  • The_Enginerd
    The_Enginerd Posts: 3,982 Member
    edited June 2017
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    @RuNaRoUnDaFiEld @CSARdiver, do you have a source for the statement that alcohol is metabolized first? Not an expert in this area, but in my Google-fu, I've seen that it is metabolized preferentially as quickly as possibly, limited by the toxic acetaldehyde intermediate (source: http://hams.cc/metabolism/ ), but nothing that states it is burned first before all other fuels, and it does not seem possible based on some quick calcs (see below post).

    Copy and paste of part of my post from another thread:

    Source for the first statement? I've heard this before, but I have never seen where this comes from. Just going by alcohol metabolism rates, and some common sense, this seems unlikely to impossible. At my weight (150 lbs), 3 shots of 80 proof liquor at 291 calories would take 5-6 hours to metabolize. My sedentary TDEE is ~100 cal/hour. I still need to metabolize 300 calories from other sources (fats/carbs/proteins) to make up the difference.

    In addition, so what if alcohol is burned first? Carbs in the form of glycogen are burned preferentially during hard aerobic exercise, but this doesn't affect body fat loss (hence the misconception of the "fat burning zone" and low intensity exercise being preferable for losing weight). This misses the forest from the trees.

    If alcohol has anything to do with weight loss, it's probably more to do with the other decisions that get made when you are drinking alcohol...
  • inertiastrength
    inertiastrength Posts: 2,343 Member
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    I think alcohol has a negative affect on the body in general (not necessarily weight loss) but I smoke so I have no real leg to stand on lol
  • CSARdiver
    CSARdiver Posts: 6,252 Member
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    Not in that sense - no. Alcohol metabolism has a nominal effect in application and nearly undetectable on a macro scale. This doesn't shut off other metabolic pathways, but prioritizes, so apologies if my use of "first" was misleading.

    There is a secondary impact of alcohol as it reduces vasopressin production - inhibiting the signalling of the renal system to reabsorb water. This has the potential to impact every metabolic pathway theoretically; however again in application - undetectable.

    That's much of the confusion - what may be a truth on a micro/molecular scale holds a very different context on a macro scale. Forest vs. Trees.

    If alcohol has anything to do with weight loss, it's probably more to do with the other decisions that get made when you are drinking alcohol...

    Very much agree.
  • Katiebear_81
    Katiebear_81 Posts: 719 Member
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    Yeah, I find that I make worse choices when drinking, so I try to limit it to 1 litre of craft beer per week. That way the most I can drink at once is my mini-growler, and when that's done... so am I! :)
  • LonghornGirlNC
    LonghornGirlNC Posts: 28 Member
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    I firmly believe it's CICO. So as long as you account for your cocktails, it shouldn't (theoretically) have any effect on weight loss. But overindulgence is overindulgence, whether it's cocktails or pie or turkey. Anyone said "portion control" lately? :smiley: And trust, me....I like my cocktails. So I build them into my plan.
  • rogerlamar6
    rogerlamar6 Posts: 142 Member
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    For me, food tastes so much better when accompanied by a well-paired wine. This causes me to consume much more food......in addition to the wine calories. Of course, weekends are more of a challenge.

    I have actually committed myself to stop drinking for one year and immediately began dropping weight again after being stalled at a plateau.
  • heybales
    heybales Posts: 18,842 Member
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    @RuNaRoUnDaFiEld @CSARdiver, do you have a source for the statement that alcohol is metabolized first? Not an expert in this area, but in my Google-fu, I've seen that it is metabolized preferentially as quickly as possibly, limited by the toxic acetaldehyde intermediate (source: http://hams.cc/metabolism/ ), but nothing that states it is burned first before all other fuels, and it does not seem possible based on some quick calcs (see below post).

    Copy and paste of part of my post from another thread:

    Source for the first statement? I've heard this before, but I have never seen where this comes from. Just going by alcohol metabolism rates, and some common sense, this seems unlikely to impossible. At my weight (150 lbs), 3 shots of 80 proof liquor at 291 calories would take 5-6 hours to metabolize. My sedentary TDEE is ~100 cal/hour. I still need to metabolize 300 calories from other sources (fats/carbs/proteins) to make up the difference.

    In addition, so what if alcohol is burned first? Carbs in the form of glycogen are burned preferentially during hard aerobic exercise, but this doesn't affect body fat loss (hence the misconception of the "fat burning zone" and low intensity exercise being preferable for losing weight). This misses the forest from the trees.

    If alcohol has anything to do with weight loss, it's probably more to do with the other decisions that get made when you are drinking alcohol...

    Studies posted in the link I gave above, because Martin is always going for science based opinions and info.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11115785

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3280601

    Ditto's to idea that in the view of a day - it doesn't matter.

    But as link above shows - you can tweak things to make the effect not as bad.
  • BPCycler
    BPCycler Posts: 92 Member
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    rdridi12 wrote: »
    What are people's thoughts on this?

    I think it most definetly does have a negative effect on fat loss and slows it down for sure, but I have found ways that work for me, to still incorporate drinks a couple times week and sustainably lose weight consistently.

    Thoughts?

    For me quitting drinking played a major role. I'm 3 1/2 years alcohol free. Within 12 months of quitting I lost 30 pounds. I'mm sure there were other factors involved but in my case it definitely helped. Not to mention the more positive numbers in my blood work.
  • saintor1
    saintor1 Posts: 376 Member
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    If any, alcohol should be used as an occasional treat. I stick to my mantra; I can do anything 1 day in 14.
  • sgt1372
    sgt1372 Posts: 3,989 Member
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    As much as I like a pint of IPA and a glass of wine, I hate the fact that drinking any alcohol results in an increase in empty cals that makes it difficult to meet my macro/cal goals.

    So, in general, for each pint of beer or glass of wine that I drink, I also have to plan to exercise (rowing is my preference) at least 15 mins at a moderate pace to make up for one of each.
  • Christy1977Z
    Christy1977Z Posts: 4 Member
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    I don't like how alcohol messes with my appetite. If I drink, my appetite the following day is totally different - I crave sweets and I feel way more hungry than usual. I went back to IF last Saturday; no booze until I had 2 drinks last night. I went from zero cravings all week to wicked cravings today. I didn't give in (go me!) but it was a remarkable difference in appetite for sure. I'll still have a night a week of a couple drinks going forward, but I have to have serious discipline to not let it screw up my good eating habits. If it becomes an issue, I'll stop any drinking - nothing tastes as good as fit feels to me :)
  • Carl_Carlson
    Carl_Carlson Posts: 85 Member
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    Any opinions on the best Irish Whiskey for the money?