Can I Drink Alcohol and Still Lose Weight?

Nutrition // Lisa Donaldson // 23 June 2016


As a dietitian, people often ask me, “Can I drink alcohol and still lose weight’? Well, the response is yes, but you need to be careful of your intake and manage eating behaviours that often accompany drinking.

If you like to have the occasional glass of wine with your dinner, than it’s OK to incorporate that into your week and still achieve your weight loss goals… but if you are planning on a boozy month with your besties, be prepared to gain some weight!

Let’s look at how you can enjoy a glass of alcohol and not fall off the rails.

Also read: Which Alcohol Has the Least Calories?

Top 5 tips to enjoy a drink and stay on track

1. Savour it

Alcohol is a treat, so it’s not something you should guzzle down and have no memory of! Take the time to sip it slowly or enjoy with a meal that it compliments. Alcohol is second to fat in the calorie stakes, so it is a calorie dense inclusion to any occasion. I suggest you choose a small glass of a quality drop and truly savour it.

2. Alternate with water

If you are going to have more than one glass because you are celebrating a special occasion, then alternate your glass of alcohol with a glass of sparkling or still water. Pace yourself and the extra water will keep you adequately hydrated, too.

3. Eat a balanced meal

Drinking on an empty stomach is not a good move! We absorb alcohol via our stomach and small intestine through diffusion and it’s all done very quickly. Ensure you eat a well balanced meal with your alcohol to help slow down this process.

4. Watch out for the munchies

Alcohol is known to make people reach for munchies and lose all resolve. Foods high in salt and fat are very attractive if you’ve had a few drinks, so make sure you are smart about the food choices you may eat alongside your drink.

Also read: Best Snacks for Weight Loss

5. You’ve gotta have a plan, man!

If there’s a special occasion and you want to have a few drinks, make a plan with yourself as to how many drinks you will consume across the course of night. If you end up drinking rounds with your mates, or someone keeps topping up your glass without you taking notice, things may get messy.

If you can be smart with your drinks you can certainly achieve weight loss results whilst having a glass of your favourite bevvy every now and again. Implement some strategies around your drinking so you can have long term and lasting results.  

REMEMBER: Don’t make drinking a regular affair, enjoy the odd glass with a nutritious meal and always drink responsibly.   


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