Alcohol when trying to live ‘healthy’

Hey friends! Hope you’re having a great day and start to your week!  Was recently asked about how to handle alcohol especially on the weekends when goals are healthy-living-focused…so I thought I’d do a blog post about alcohol at social events and how to go into those events with a plan.

Ok, alcohol. Lots of people tend to go a little overboard with it on the weekends or at social events, right? Or they don’t know how to fit it in if they’re tracking macros or trying to pay attention to their bodies more and eat more healthfully. I’m going to give you some tips for how to head into a social event and not sabotage or undo your hard work you did during the week if you’re working for a specific goal.

If you’re tracking macros and you’re wondering how to ‘fit alcohol’ in, you need to know that alcohol is 7 calories per 1 gram. So you know that protein is 4 calories per 1g, carbs are 4 calories, and fat is 9 calories per 1 gram. So alcohol is often called that ‘4th macro’ because it has its own makeup. So when tracking it, you want to either replace carbs or fat with your alcohol amount. Don’t take it away from protein, because you need that macro a little more especially if you’re working out and being active. So just as you would with any other macro, you tend to go into a social event with a plan. You know you’re going to want a few sweets so you might save up on your carbs and ‘spend’ them that evening. Or you might want some more of the chicken wings so you save up on your fat during the day and ‘spend’ the fat calories on the chicken wings. Same thing works for alcohol. If you go into the party knowing you want a beer, then you can calculate that in ahead of time and enjoy the beer without worrying about what it’s going to do to your numbers.

 

However, what do you do if you’re trying to eat more intuitively and want to enjoy a drink but you’re not sure if that’s going to open the floodgates to either drinking a few too many drinks or eating too much while drinking? First of all, you still need to go into the event with a plan. Just because you’re not tracking what you’re eating, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try and be mindful when going to a social event. My rule of thumb, is usually one and done. Now I say usually, because when it comes to eating intuitively we want to avoid food and drink rules and listen to our bodies. However, when it comes to alcohol, we all know that it makes it harder to listen to our bodies because our inhibitions are lowered. So when we have that second or third drink, we’re not really in tune with what our bodies need in that moment and it becomes harder and harder to feel our satisfaction with food and to feel our fullness. It’s very easy to overeat when we have more than one alcoholic beverage. So I usually say one and done because then you can enjoy that drink, but still be in tune with your body when it comes to eating. Remember, to treat that drink as you would any food. Slow down when drinking it. Savor it. Really enjoy it in the moment. By doing that, you’ll be able to enjoy it more and be so satisfied by it that you might not even want a second drink. And the first one always tastes better anyway.  BUT, if you do want a second drink, because they’re so tasty 😉, be sure to stay hydrated and drink a full glass of water after each drink and try to keep your timing to one drink an hour.  That way, you can still have more of your tasty beverage, but the drinks won’t affect you as much if you spread them out over a couple hours and you’ll still be able to be in tune with your body.

So I hope you can take this tip into your next social event or next time you eat out and want a margarita. Get the marg. Enjoy it and savor it.

Hope you guys have a great day!

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