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In this article we will discuss the effects of alcohol on the keto diet, Whether it will stop ketosis or affect your progress?
And what low carb alcoholic drinks can you have while staying in ketosis ?
If you’re following a ketogenic diet, you probably know that high-carb treats are off-limits.
But can you drink alcohol while on keto?
The short answer is Yes!
Drinking alcohol on keto is just fine, so long as you know what to drink and you keep it in moderation.
However, there are certain alcoholic drinks you might want to avoid if you’re looking to stay in ketosis.
Yes, you can drink alcohol and stay in ketosis but drinking while following a keto diet can also have some unexpected side effects.
Though one glass of something strong won’t knock your body out of ketosis, drinking alcohol while following a keto diet will affect your progress.
Specifically, it will slow down your rate of ketosis. The liver can make ketones out of alcohol.
So technically, when you drink, you’ll continue to produce ketones and will remain in ketosis.
However, your body treats ethanol or alcohol as a toxin and will work to get rid of it ASAP.
The liver will start to process alcohol as quickly as possible, which means it is used by the body before all other nutrients, including fat, so it slows the process of converting fatty acids to ketones.
Drinking alcohol won’t erase all your progress, but it will impact ketosis.
However, with careful planning, there are plenty of low-carb alcoholic beverages that you can enjoy in moderation even on a keto diet.
#1. Hard Liquor
Vodka, rum, tequila, gin, brandy, whiskey, etc. can be drunk straight or combined with low-carb mixers for more flavor.
Most of these have zero carbs, which is great, but you need to be careful with what you mix them with.
Liqueurs and most mixers do have carbs, so avoid them.
#2. Dry Wine
Dry red wine, dry white wine, dry rose wine, dry sparkling wine, etc. These are going to be the lowest carb wine that you can consume.
These typically have 4 – 5 grams net carbs per glass, but you have to be careful.
#3. Light Beers
Most beers are very high in carbs so they should be avoided. Most light beers are fine, but you can look up the carb counts of your favorite brands.
Keto-friendly mixers are just as important as the alcohol itself.
Watch out for common mixers like juice, soda, sweeteners and energy drinks as they can quickly turn a carb-free drink into a high-calorie carb bomb.
Instead, opt for low-carb mixers like diet soda, sugar-free tonic water, seltzer or powdered flavor packets.
Reasons to limit alcohol on keto
#1. Alcohol reduces self-control
Alcohol actually changes your brain chemistry, which can impact your mood, your behavior, your memory, and more.
This can lead us to make decisions we wouldn’t normally make.
Such as eating things you normally wouldn’t.
#2. Alcohol has a lot of empty calories
While calories may not be our #1 focus on the keto diet, they do still count!
And empty calories from alcohol are not providing any sort of nutrition, so there is no use for these calories.
#3. Alcohol can increase hunger or cravings
On alcohol your brain goes into starvation mode because certain neurons that deal with hunger are activated when you are intoxicated.
In addition to alcohol reducing self-control, alcohol makes it difficult to stick on your diet.
#4. Alcohol can stall weight loss even if you stay in ketosis
As we discussed in the beginning of this video. Your body will prioritize getting rid of the alcohol before it burns any sugar or fat from your food or your body.
This means both sugar and fat are more likely to get stored as body fat when you drink alcohol.
#4. Alcohol on keto may give you worse hangovers
As we discussed before, alcoholic drinks on keto are metabolized much faster and can lead you to feeling drunk quicker.
If you don’t keep your keto drinks to a moderate level, you’ll feel even worse the next day.
3 Tips For Drinking on Keto
Tip #1. Drink in moderation
There’s no reason to miss out on an occasional drink when you are out, but limit it to one or two.
This will not only keep carbs and calories in check, it will also decrease the chance of stalling weight loss or a hangover the next day.
Tip#2. Keep yourself hydrated
Try to have a glass of water for every drink you have, and an extra one before bed. This will reduce dehydration and you’ll be less likely to get a hangover.
Tip #3. Always chose low-carb drink options and mixers
So as we have discussed, there are many keto friendly alcoholic beverages to choose from.
And there’s no reason you can’t enjoy some keto cocktails in moderation and remain in ketosis.
Cheers to that!
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