Is Alcohol OK when we are trying to manage our weight?

No one ever said losing weight was easy. If it was easy, then we would not be facing an epidemic of obesity in the Western World. So what would happen if I was to say that you need to quit drinking alcohol if you are serious about losing that weight? One of the main reasons that you should quit is that When you drink alcohol, your body has to focus on processing the alcohol and is not able to properly break down foods containing carbohydrates and fat. That means that those food calories will be converted into body fat!


A few bullet points about some of the other problems with drinking alcohol while you are trying to lose weight:

  • Alcohol is a diuretic.   You lose water and important minerals from drinking it.
  • Alcohol contains 7 calories per gram and offers NO nutritional value.
  • Alcohol may help induce sleep, but the sleep you get isn’t very deep.
  • Alcohol can increase the amount of acid that your stomach produces, causing your stomach lining to become inflamed.
  • Alcohol  can lead to serious health problems, such as stomach ulcers, liver disease, and heart problems.
  • Alcohol lowers your inhibitions, which is can make it more likely that you will break your diet commitments.
  • Alcohol stimulates your appetite and the tendency is to eat unhealthy foods like peanuts, salted chips and greasy foods.

So if you really are serious about dropping weight the alcohol has to go.  more to it than that. When you drink alcohol your body needs to burn it off straight away, so if you’re out for dinner, then that meal you’re eating is being stored rather than burned off.    When you are losing weight your liver is working overtime flushing toxins out so you don’t want it overloaded processing alcohol.    What you should really be drinking at this stage is water and lots of it.

Your body can’t store alcohol, so it must metabolize it right away. When you drink alcohol, your body makes metabolizing it a priority over all other metabolic processes. Your body sends alcohol to the liver, which produces the enzymes necessary for the oxidation and metabolism of alcohol.

Not only does alcohol not contain any nutrients of its own, but it can impair your body’s ability to absorb nutrients and vitamins from the food you eat.   This is because alcohol is toxic to your liver, so drinking heavily for a long time will cause you to develop cirrhosis of the liver and death.

Although this web site is focussed on losing weight, there are some times when weight loss is not a good thing.   One of those times is when chronic over consumption of alcohol  actually leads to weight loss.    To make this happen you would need to drink heavily over a long period of time to the point where the alcohol causes inflammation in the organs of the digestive tract.   Your body’s ability to absorb nutrients will then have been  severely damaged and you will become chronically malnourished.  This will definitely make you lose weight.   The catch is that you will also die not long after losing the weight, so this is probably not a recommended weight loss technique to use.


But Hans, I read somewhere that drinking in moderation is good for you“.

Utter rubbish !!!!    That myth is based upon discredited studies by a scientist who faked the results. An article headed “Rethinking Red Wine” had this to say:

The researcher, Dr. Dipak K. Das, who conducted the research, culminating in 2007 at The University of Connecticut, that had all the nightly news programs and medical journals proclaiming the health benefits of red wine, has been found guilty of 145 acts of data fabrication.

Turns out that an anonymous allegation of “research irregularities” led to a three year internal  investigation of Dr. Das’ lab which resulted in  a 60,000 page report concluding the falsification of data.

In an article published by CBS news on their website, Red wine no fountain of youth after all?,  Dr. Richard A. Miller, professor of pathology at the University of Michigan, told CBS News of red wine, “If it is good for you, it’s almost certainly not because of the resveratrol. People who bought the story for the last 10 years have been fooled

So the answer is as plain as the nose on your face.   If you are serious about losing weight, knock the drinking on the head.   And there are additional benefits from not drinking alcohol that are not just about improved general health and improved weight loss.

Quitting alcohol might just also minimise the risk of making a fool of yourself at a social gathering if you were to drink too much and become intoxicated.   And don’t forget the risk of being caught driving under the influence.

The young gentleman in this video probably wishes that he had not imbibed so much alcohol the night the video was recorded:

And this fellow shows the problems of losing inhibitions and control while under the influence of alcohol.   He is actually trying to get his hands on more of the stuff!

And who could forget some of the more embarrassing moments of the late Oliver Reed under the influence of the demon drink:

And of course this chap probably wishes that his “mate” had turned up before the police:

So you have been warned.   Alcohol is not on the menu for the serious dieter.






  1. Most people I know don’t realise just how many calories are in alcohol! If I drink I will usually drink a vodka soda, but I really avoid drinking alcohol as much as possible.

  2. So no more wine with my meals? Can’t see that catching on.

    • Joan, this diet is not for everybody. Its targeted at people who have tried everything else without success and are now “Mad as hell and won’t take it any more!” Going without a glass of wine for a few months while they get back into shape is a small price for someone like that.

  3. I keep telling my husband this. I keep a record of my weight loss as I had over 100lb to lose. When I only drank alcohol once every 6 weeks, I lost 8-10lb a month. As soon as I go back to drinking every weekend, I lose nothing or even gain.

  4. I always remember not to drink any alcohol when I am on a diet or something so it doesn’t effect it in anyway. Thanks!

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