Alcohol and Health


Your relationship with alcohol is personal and specific to you.  If you need to be sober, you need to be sober, and I respect and honor your commitment to doing what’s best for you.  And you should skip this column and come back next month : )

This month I’d like to dish out some guidelines around healthy alcohol consumption.  Is there such thing?  Can you lose weight while drinking alcohol?  What’s the best drink order for a clean, healthy eater who’s not looking to completely swing the pendulum? 

According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, moderate drinking is one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men.  This definition refers to the amount consumed on any single day and is not intended as an average over several days.  If you are healthy and have a healthy relationship with alcohol, as your Coach I’d want you drinking in moderation a couple nights a week at the very most. 

And what are you drinking?  Ideally vodka or tequila soda or sugar-free Dry Farm wine

Is it possible to drink and lose weight?  Maybe--if you keep the rest of your diet real tight.  The difficulty is, as usual, the sugar and carbohydrate content of alcoholic beverages.  When there is excess insulin (the hormone produced when we consume sugar and carbs)  in the system, it is impossible to burn fat and difficult to lose weight.  Glucose can be stored in our muscles and liver, but when there’s no room left there, the glucose gets stored on our body as fat.

So treat your drink like a treat.  That’s your dessert.  If you’re out to eat and having a drink, skip the bread basket, skip dessert.   

Let me know any questions you have about the role alcohol plays in a healthy diet and lifestyle.