Weight Loss
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Alcohol and weight gain!!

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I don't want to come across as an alcoholic, ;-) but before i decided to overhaul my life and become healthy alcohol played a significant part in my weight gain. Not just in the amount of calories in alcohol but the temptation to eat bad foods when i've had a few drinks. Having looked at alot of the topics on here i haven't seen much mention if it, so either everyone is incredibley well behaved or i just haven't looked hard enough. I know what drinks are lower in calories and i know that my weight loss will be greater without alcohol, i just wanted to know over people's opinions. Does this only happen to me or are there people out there who've had the same experience???

I'm on day 6 of my new healthy life, taking it day by day and feeling good!! xxx
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I am in the same boat. I just like having a drink or two every night, though I have cut down to twice a week to save calories. I know clear liquors (non sugared) are lower in calories than darker ones like Jack. Lately I have been drinking vodka and diet ocean spray cranberry spritzer. It's pretty good, even my bf drinks it. If I've been good I'll have jack and diet gingerale, since diet coke doesn't do it for me.The calorie tracker thing does have liquors and beers in it, so you can find out exact calories. 1 oz is equal to a shot, I believe. Hope this helps and good luck!
Ahhh I just wrote a big reply and lost it somehow! How frusterating!  Anyway, heres the deal:
I am having similar problems!! I am still young (21) , and not ready to give up my partying days, but they seriously slow down the weight loss!  I need a plan that will let me kick back and have a few on the weekends, otherwise I know I won't be able to stick to my diet!  Another problem I am faceing  - the student budget!  Eating right cost way to much.... but I am just going to have to suck it up and spend a little more on good food.  Any help would be greatly  appreciated!  I'll try to do the same for you where I can!
also -  I love beer and wine.  So between the two, I think wine is a better choice calorie wise, just incase you are torn between them someday!
Alcohol consumption or lack of has been a key factor in my weight loss journey.  I have lost 65 pounds over the last year and it all started with my decision to take a break from alcohol.  In July 06, I made the decision to take a break from drinking alcohol for a number of reasons and read a book called "How to Quit Drinking without AA" - it really enlightened me to the effect that alcohol has on metabolism and inslulin levels.  To make a long story short, if I hadn't taken a much needed break from alcohol & sugar, I would not be where I am today in terms of my weight loss.  Like kim mentioned, not only does alcohol add empty calories, it can also increase your temptation to make "bad" food choices and I also find personally, that I am less likely to eat well and exercise the next day especially after a night with 3 or more drinks.  I did re-introduce alchohol gradually for a while and was able to maintain, but had a difficult time losing the last 15-20 pounds to reach my goal.  I have been alcohol-free for a month again and really notice the difference in my energy levels and ability to lose weight and gain muscle.  Once I reach my goal, I do plan to allow myself a few glasses of wine a week, but will monitor it very closely.  I do have an addictive personality, so I need to be careful.

p.s. this is my first post!
Hi all,

I started a low-sugar and low-refined carbs eating plan in March of 2006, working with a nutritionist.  One of the hardest things she had me do was cut out booze for the first 3 weeks of changing my eating habits. It was very hard, not just because I DO enjoy a few beers or glasses of wine once or twice a week, but from the social aspect of drinking - when everyone is tipsy around you and you are clutching your seltzer with lime, it's not so fun! ;-p I have done it several other times in the past year, just given myself a break from alcohol for 2-3 week stretches.

However, I have to say this - it works. I mean, I overhauled my eating habits entirely, and that definitely has to do with my weight loss, not just cutting out booze (started at 217 or so, from a high of 223, down to about 165-6 now). But, I have to say from the perspective of someone who's down to the home stretch (I'd like to lose another 15lbs, as I am about 5'6" or a bit over) I have considered cutting out booze for a month or so to jump start the process. It really DOES work, and as paavment said above, the worst part about drinking is the desire for crappy food during the drinking!

So, kim79, my friendly suggestion would be to cut out booze for as long as you can without totally depriving yourself. Also, you'll notice what I did - when you go back to drinking, you'll be satisfied with less, and relish the feeling/taste of having a few drinks a lot more.

Good luck!

~ Colleen
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I have to second paavement.  When I started CC, I was counting the calories of my drinks as well, and I didn't lose all that fast.  Now that I have cut waaaay back, (drinking maybe one night a week instead of six or seven) it's easier.  All that about insulin and metabolism, it's true.  And it's way too easy when you've been drinking to munch on some chips or something without even really knowing it.

And slightly off topic, but htracey, eating right doesn't have to cost and arm and a leg!  I'm a grad studet and broke as hell.  My staple?  Rice and beans.  Add steamed broccoli and a tbsp of cheddar?  Mmmmm!  Cans of beans and bags of brown rice (the best kind) are cheap.  I eat it probably four times a week.  Corn tortillas, too, are cheap and also delicious. 
I go to the pub with my mates every month or so sometimes more so i see it as a treat because i don't do it every night. I never see the point in taking in empty calories on your own so i dont drink alone or when im relaxing with family... only when we have nights out with friends do i drink and i drink moderatley. Theres nufin wrong with drinking when you do it on off occasions and i think if you DO stick with off occasions it wont affect you if you jump back on the healthy life after a nice night at the pub!
SOooooooo glad to find that i'm not on my own. Thanks for all the posts!! And advice, they're really useful.

It sounds boring but i don't have anything major planned in my social calendar for a while, so gonna cut right back. I'm not saying that i won't let myself have the odd glass on the weekend. But the last few days of not drinking - apart from tues when i was naughty- Ihave felt better. it's easier to wake up in the mornings and i feel more motivated during the day. And although i was naughty on tues and had some wine i didn't indulge in "bad" food. which is actually a major success for me. My local dominos will see a serious drop in their profits.

paavement, congrats on your first post and for sharing your experience.

htracey, it must be hard being healthy as a student and especially cutting back with the social side. but jesse k's suggestions are good. Wow, broccoli and cheddar- hadn't thought of that but sounds yummy!!

and colleen. i think you're definately right, when i haven't had a drink for a while, always tastes better.

Thanks everyone, this site is really helpful xx
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I'm a student, so partying and alchohol are a big part of my experience at this time in my life.

I generally don't drink casually unless it is a special occasion, not just because of the calories, but because I don't really need alchohol to have a good time.

A friend of mine throws fantastic keggers though and once a month I go all out.

It's nice to let go once in a while, you can't count calories all the freaking time. It's too stressful, and stress (at least for me) leads to binges I'd rather do without!

I was partying pretty heavily every weekend last month, and for the past two weeks I've cut out all alcohol.  Not only have I lost a little weight, but I feel better in general.  I'm young, I want to have fun and party, but drinking doesn't always have to be a part of it.
Alcohol is defnitely an issue for me.  I am 21.  May 07 college grad.  This summer I have significantly cut back from what I was doing in college, but I still know that it hurts me when I do it.  I will be starting law school in the fall, so I am sure that will cut it down even more.  Keeping time in between drinking does make a difference because I can tell that my tolerence has decreased so I don't end up drinking as much.
bacardi and diet...gets the job done!

i know how you feel, i was doing so good for a month and then i went out, had a few beers, ate some pizza and felt like crap the next day, and i ruined my goals for the week. if you must, shots are around the same cals as beer but of coarse will get the job done faster, in my eyes thats the purpose so i drink hard and fast.
One, consider how often you drink...do you need to drink that often?  If not, try going out every other weekend instead of every weekend.  Plan something constructive for the weekend you don't go out...read a biography, study a language, clean your house (I think I just inspired myself, not for the cleaning!).

When you do go out, make sure you get enough exercise so that it doesn't effect you too badly.  Tipsy is fun, drunk is usually pretty stupid.  Dancing will work off the drinks so you might want to do that.  Also, make sure that you really do get enough calories of the healthy variety earlier in the day...if you're on a 1200 calorie diet, get the 1200 in nutritious stuff, exercise for a few hundred calories and then realize that you might not lose anything on the day/night you go out.  Try a new drink that's lower in calories...I like vodka and grapefruit juice because it tastes good, but not so good that I down them.  Alternate with a glass of water for every drink.

Plan for exercise the next day, this is important!  No hangovers, hangovers are your body's way of making you pay for your stupidity.

I've been losing 1-2 pounds per week and I still go out and drink, usually every other weekend and also not to excess.  If you can't track how many drinks you've hand, get a pen and make a mark on your hand everytime you get a drink.  Ask the bartender to cut you off at your predesignated limit...make sure you tip!
elle91 you are my twin!! i just graduated college too, alchohol and celebrating/leaving all my friends definitly played a part in me gaining a bit of weight which i am now trying to lose as well, before starting law school in the fall. and dealing with all the stress that comes with it. also just turned 22. this weekend i am going on a roooad trip. ugh drinking and bad food. but lots of fun!! i also like a good vodka cran though for a lower cal option over beer
If you think being a student and drinking is tempting wait till you experience after work drinks!! weirdly i wasn't a big drinker at uni!!

I've really cut down, but i must admit i was naughty last night and gave in!!! AHHH!! But i didn't go crazy with the bad food, so that's one plus. and i did run around the park with the dog for an hour afterwards.

Right, i must get more strict with myself.
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catb- Drinking on an empty stomach is probably the #1 cause of your hangovers.

To everyone else- Congrats on the weight loss and giving up alcohol. I would love to give up alcohol and I have actually thought about it, but there is no way I could.
I've decided to have drinks only on Friday or Saturday, and I use diet mixers anyway. Mmm, maybe I'll have a vodka tonic tomorrow ;)
I'm 163 pounds and 6ft tall. Though my six pack aint showin as much as it used to, I feel 90% of the time that it's a decent trade off to be able to drink as much as I do. I'm 22 (23 in a month) and I'm an alchaholic. I have between 4-12 beers a day or a few beers and a bottle of wine, or a few beers and 3-4 drinks.. I can't stand being sober, it makes me want to jump in front of a bus. That being said, what can I drink the most of that won't affect my weight as much as others? Thanks :)

I saw your blog on the internet, not sure where you are in your diet today and how alcohol has affected it but if you are still on here would love to chat with you.  Thanks!

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