This is a big topic that I could talk about for hours, and MUST be taken with context. I will take ONE ANGLE of this topic for the sake of keeping my posts more succinct, but please please please make sure to read my post in full.
Before I start, please know that I am not endorsing drinking, but if you are of age, you personally choose to make that decision, and your doctor has ok’d you for drinking in moderation, then go for it.
Round 1 for Liquor vs. Beer Goes To??
For this particular example we will assume that the amount of calories in the choice of 1 serving of beer you choose would have been equal to the amount of calories in the choice of 1 serving of liquor that you would have selected.
We hear all the time…I’m going on a diet, so I’m gonna cut out beer. Even me personally, when I was cutting 2 years ago to make weight for my National Taekwondo tournament, I was actively only drinking liquor and not drinking beer.
So Why Beer?
When I say Beer, I do not mean watered down natural light or bud lights. The past year I have recently fallen deeply in love with craft beers. I love very strong, aroma filled, hoppy beers. My goal for any given day is to be at or under a certain calorie total. If I am trying to stay lean or start cutting to lose weight, I will try to already account for the beers I plan on drinking later on that day/night and add them into myfitnesspal.
“But C.G 3.0, on average aren’t there much more calories in craft beers as opposed to your average liquor straight up (Whiskey Neat, Whiskey on the rocks, Rum and Diet Coke).”
CORRECT! However, the angle I have chosen to take at this is based not on the caloric value of your drinks, but the potential after effects of drinking those beverages. When I’m drinking in moderation, and plan out my designated 2 or so pints of craft beer, I will get a buzz off them, but won’t be wasted. However, there are times where you go out to party and if you drink hard liquor filled beverages and/or are taking shots, you’re setting yourself up to be as some would call it…SCHWASSTED.
This typically occurs on a Friday or Saturday night, and chances are you have already eaten a full day’s worth of meals/calories. So not only do you ingest the calories from the drinks, but many times what happens, when you are that drunk and the club lets out, you are much more inclined to partake in some good ole fashioned drunk eating. Drunk eating most likely won’t be at a salad bar or Panera, but at a greasy diner or fast food spot.
Your drunk eating not only puts you over your maintenance calories (see TDEE), but typically the fat filled, carb crazy selection that you are usually craving in that state, will probably have the same amount of calories that you have already eaten and/or the same amount of calories that you should be trying to stay under if looking to hit your weight loss/fat loss goal.
I’m just trying to put things into perspective as to what I think may be one of the many problems that are keeping us from our fat loss goals, even though we do workout consistently or eat a good amount of salads throughout the week and are doing your meal prepping. Again you don’t have to give up partying, you don’t have to give up jumbo slice or late night tonsilog, but if being leaner and losing weight was really your priority, then you will want to try and practice more moderation.
Giving up alcohol completely might be the best bet for most people, however we can’t forget the psychological aspects of social drinking. I will thoroughly enjoy my craft beers, or maybe just go for one or two old fashions, but because I practice moderation, I won’t be in a forced mindset to crave and binge on the late night treats. I do not have my clients go cold turkey with anything and do extreme restrictions on any items. I let people be FLEXIBLE with their choices, because it causes less mental strain and higher chances of sticking to their nutrition game plan.