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Does alcohol limit your ability to reach your weight loss goals.

I eat so well, except on days where I am hung-over. I never became hungover before cutting out all of my "absorbing food". not to mention the empty calories in the alcoho itself. this has happend to me twice since I started dieting a few months ago- otherwise I dont drink more than 1 glass a wine with dinner- occasionally.

I recognize that this is probably pointing to a larger problem...

Mon. Nov 12, 10:40am

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The body will prioritize the metabolization of alcohol before food.
It lowers your inhibitions when it comes to eating (and everything else).
If you don't eat while or after drinking, the alcohol will do more organic damage.
You will see a loss on the scale the next day because you're dehydrated, but the awful truth will be revealed the next day.

Monday, November 12, 2007, 11:11 AM

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OP here.

I meant the question to be a personal one. I know that it does, but do any of you have isues with this?

Monday, November 12, 2007, 11:13 AM

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Yep, this is a huge problem for me. I'm a college student, so a big part of my social life is going out on the weekends and drinking with friends at parties. I'm having a difficult time letting go of this in order to lose more weight. And like the OP, my "hangover" days are the worst part of the week for me eating wise. Honestly I'm still not sure how to deal with this issue, but I think personally moderation is key. I'm not willing to give up occasional nights out with friends, but I must accept that the next day I won't feel great (and I can't get out of this by overeating). Also, I can't go out often enough that it ruins all my hard work during the week...I'm a work in progress!

Monday, November 12, 2007, 11:33 AM

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Yes - it definitely is. I notice when I cut my consumption of alcohol the weight comes off a LOT faster. I adore getting together with friends and sharing some excellent vintages, but d@ng - I just can't do more than a couple glasses anymore without a hangover (which I never used to get) and not very regularly either. I can totally budget the calories, but they do not seem to be the same as food calories and the effects of alcohol on my system have really changed!

It makes me sad, because I truly love good wine and am willing to make caloric sacrifices to continue to enjoy it, but I sure don't love hangovers! And I've definitely noticed that when I consume more of it the weight loss is sluggish at best. I've cut it back to a half glass with dinner and that's a workable compromise for me.

Monday, November 12, 2007, 11:54 AM

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Alcohol Consumption

Binge drinking is one of the main reasons why I'm now finding myself needing to drop about 50 lbs. Did a LOT of this (and emotional eating) over the past couple of years.

My Dad was an Alcoholic, and struggled tremendously with Alcoholism, Depression, and Post-Traumatic Stress. He was a former police officer (drug squad guy), and became a paramedic in his later years. It goes without saying that Alcoholism is prevalent amongst police officers. Dad also came from a family with a lineage of Alcoholism.

My Dad died in June, 2006 due to alcohol poisoning.

I continued binge drinking for months later, despite the wake-up call that Dad's death ought to have caused. I am not an Alcoholic, but an abuser; this has been determined by my doctor. I know that I stand on a slippery slope, and do not want my drinking to manifest itself into full-blown dependancy.

I decided to stop a couple of months ago. Just ... stop. I don't crave it, want it, nor am interested in drinking. Empty calories, depressant, and I'd be doing myself NO FAVORS should I continue drinking recreationally.

Monday, November 12, 2007, 2:56 PM

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OP Here, did you stop going out?

Monday, November 12, 2007, 3:49 PM

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Not the OP, but, maybe some of you can clarify something for me, which I've never understood. Isn't going out about getting to hang out with your friends, and potentally also to meet new people? I've never understood why a lot of people have to drink in order to go out.

Maybe it's because at the very beginning of my freshman year of college, I got mono (from making out with random guys - I am not professing to be a saint!), and could not drink. However, I didn't want to miss out on meeting people, gonig to parties, etc. So I went and didn't drink. So maybe I just got used to it quickly. But for me, going out to bars or parties, dancing, etc., has never been something that I had to get drunk to do, so I have a hard time understanding why some people can't go out and enjoy themselves without drinking. Why do the two have to go hand-in-hand? Why do some people need to stop going out just in order to stop drinking?

When I was in college, half the bars in our area gave free soda to people, encouraging safe drivers. I LOVED being able to go out for a whole night, see all my friends, dance, meet new people, and not spend a penny!

Monday, November 12, 2007, 4:18 PM

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I admit, I dont do large social events without drinking...especially at loud crazy dance bars. I like to be buzzed for a night out. Fortunately (or not!) I am one of those people who get drunk pretty quickly (Id LOVEEE to use the term lightweight but so not true!) but its still empty calories that I just dont need. I am so good during the week but feel that my weekends totally set me back. So frustrating.

Monday, November 12, 2007, 5:59 PM

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I am someone that lost all my weight and maintain my goal without totally cutting out alcohol. I never did. I don't drink everyday but I enjoy myself just about every weekend and it didn't hinder my weight loss efforts.

To answer a PP, I don't know why but I too enjoy being in bar settings if I'm "buzzed". It's not as fun sober and I don't know why! Maybe because I really let go and relax when I've had a few drinks and in my stressful life it feels good to not be worrying about anything for an evening.
Since losing my weight it does't take much to get me buzzed either so I don't spend a fortune on going out!

Monday, November 12, 2007, 6:57 PM

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So the two previous posters are both saying "I don't know why," but then they're also both saying "I can't relax and stop worrying if I'm not buzzed." Soo glad that's not me!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007, 9:39 AM

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I think my main issue is that at home I will have 1 or 2 drinks, but when I am out I just dont know when to stop. A get a buzz and unless I really make a point of stopping, I jsut keep going and then I am hung over in the am.

and for the sake of 9:39:
I am soo not glad that it is me- i am looking for advice not ridicule

Tuesday, November 13, 2007, 1:42 PM

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I am the 6:57 poster and I didn't mean the only way I can de-stress is by drinking. I just meant that on Friday after a long week it's nice to sit around with friends and have some drinks. I don't think that qualifies as a drinking problem!
During the week I exercise for at least an hour every evening, and on the weekends so I guess that's another way I de-stress...
I'm young, I like to have a good time, that's all!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007, 1:48 PM

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Tuesday, November 13, 2007, 2:18 PM

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To 4:18

I don't really drink anymore, except for an occasional drink with a meal out, but I used to drink a LOT (university life!) and I would not want to go out to a bar sober. Not because I don't enjoy the company of my friends, but because if everyone else is drunk, and I'm sober, it's just not fun. Everyone else is having a blast because they're drunk, but really, most of the jokes aren't funny, they're not making much sense, they're spilling their drinks on you and falling all over the place, they stink like booze....not my idea of a good time. Now that I don't drink, I still get together with people, but I'd rather do something where no one is really drinking - games nights, swimming, skating or tobogganing, or something else that's fun but not focused on drinking.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007, 5:00 PM

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Personally, I don't really enjoy drinking that much. I mean, I enjoy having a drink or two... I enjoy the taste. But I don't enjoy being drunk. It really just makes me feel dizzy and sick... which isn't fun. I sometimes wonder if I react to alcohol differently than most people, because this can't be the feeling that most people enjoy.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007, 6:30 PM

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I drink a-lot! I mean Every weekend, at least one evening spent buzzed up if not totally blotto. I have a beer after work about 3 days a week. The weekend though. Forget about it. So I work hard all week and get on the scale and I am at the same weight. I get to the weekend and the bars and on Monday morning I am down 5 pounds just to have it all come back plus one on Tuesday once I have redhydrated. So, I have decided, I am on the wagon until St. Patricks. That's it. I just had a Birthday and the Holidays are over so, that's it! I am on the wagon for no other reason then my liver will burnm alcohol first and leave me with the fat I work all week to burn. Man what a loser thing I am doing to my body. I know better and now, I am going to try to do better.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008, 11:12 AM

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I agree

Holidays over-so i will stay off the wagon for a while. i do watch what i eat if i know i am going out drinking. however, then i seem to get drunk faster, then it is over the top. when i ate more, i could drink more. i have to be aware of how many i am drinking and in what time, because it will come on so fast. just be careful

Wednesday, January 23, 2008, 9:07 AM

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Mix water with drinks

I, too, like to indulge on the weekends, but that sometimes means a little hangover that just makes me RAVENOUS! I've taken to drinkging a glass of water for every alcoholic beverage I have - and that seems to work pretty well. It allows me the "drinking" motion, staying hydrated, and actually fills me up so I'm not so thirsty for the fun fruity drinks.
Everything in moderation...

Wednesday, January 23, 2008, 12:22 PM

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Most people who get hangovers are either 1- drinking way to much 2- mixing too many drinks together 3 - just can't hold their liquor and shouldn't be drinking to begin with. If there is something you can have a few drinks of without getting a hangover then you should stick to that if your going to drink. But if you drink and get hangovers all the time why even do it? I know when I used to drink I had to drink all my stuff straight up, no mixers or I got sick and a hangover the next day.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008, 12:40 PM

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It took me a long time to figure out that my inability to stop at one or two drinks has A LOT to do with my inability to stop at one or two bites. I'm not suggesting that anyone else here has a drinking problem, but my 10 year binge drinking party had many negative effects on my life, including gaining 50 extra pounds. After being sober for 7 years I see that this exact same insatiable craving that I had for alcohol is what I have with food. It is all about trying to use external things to fill me up. It is all about trying to self-medicate with alcohol, drugs, or food.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008, 9:40 PM

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Yep, me here again. So I have refraind from the cocktails thus far. Even though my Hubby put a six pack of Heineken Light in the fridge. However, it is only Thursday we will have to see how I do over the weekend. Hey, Maybe we should start a group and track our weight in conjunction with our Alcohol consumption. Who's in?

Thursday, January 24, 2008, 12:21 PM

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I'm alcohol-free and always have been, but I'm also a high-school teacher so I'm finding this thread interesting and somewhat enlightening. Maybe you guys will find my observations enlightening in the same way.

I'm thrown by the idea that a person would participate in an activity that wasn't fun unless their judgement and perception was slightly impaired. If you have to be buzzed to enjoy it, how fun can it really be? I know that's a different perspective than the one you are coming from, but thought it might be interesting to have an outsider's take on what you're saying.

I wonder if there are things you are missing--activities you wouldn't have to be buzzed to enjoy, things that are so absolutely enjoyable that you can do them sober--and you're not discovering them because you're willing to settle for something that's fun only if you're buzzing.

It's hard for me to understand. I have no idea what "buzzed" feels like, but I know what it looks like in a couple of people I know well, and I'm not interested in relinquishing my self in that way. They, of course, think that it lets them *be* themselves--but they are not the same people to me. I prefer the persons they are when sober, and I find that the friends who prefer them in their buzzed state are not worthy friends--if that makes sense. They're the kind of people that they can't enjoy when sober. So it comes to the same question--if they have to be buzzed to enjoy the company of these girls, are they really worth hanging out with?

Anyway...I'm glad for the belief system that has kept me (and now is helping keep my children) solidly sober. My uncle was an alcoholic and nothing's worth that risk to me.

Friday, January 25, 2008, 10:40 AM

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to 10:40

It is a good thing we are not all the same. People are different and that is what adds color to the world.

Your assumption that the people on this thread do everything in their lives with a 'buzz on' is completely ridiculous. I have traveled the world, had an audience with the Pope, danced with Barack O'bama, and ran for public office. Please don't assume we are a missing something because on occasion we like a cocktail with friends. Maybe more then 1.

Assumptive statements such as these:
"Maybe you guys will find my observations enlightening in the same way."
"but thought it might be interesting to have an outsider's take on what you're saying. "
Yeah these are made by exactly the kind of people that make me want to drink. The self appointed, saviors and the mystifyingly morally superior.

Congratulations on that belief system. Good for you and your children. Sorry about your Uncle.

Friday, January 25, 2008, 5:47 PM

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Wow. Too bad one can't be paid for misinterpretation.

Would you mind quoting exactly where I said *everyone* in this thread did *everything* with a buzz on, or that one or two drinks automatically equated to having a buzz on?

I was addressing those who specificially said they couldn't enjoy bars without a buzz on. And I didn't say anyone definitely was missing anything because of drinking; I simply asked if there was the possibility.

Too bad people make youi want to drink. It's much better to live one's own life and not be ruled by others that way. (You characterized me as a self-appointed savior and mystifyingly morally superior, so I guess I'll be that way. And yes, I realize the contradiction in the two preceding sentences; it was deliberate.)

Hey, have fun. However you can get it. :^ )

Saturday, January 26, 2008, 4:19 PM

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Have fun! That is exactly right. I will take 50 Sammy Davis Jr. years over 100 Jimmy Swaggert years anytime!

Sunday, January 27, 2008, 12:58 PM

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I'm glad "Sammy Davis Jr." years and "Jimmy Swaggert" years aren't the only choices. Double ugh.

Sunday, January 27, 2008, 8:51 PM

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I agree with you but, those are my example polar opposite life styles. How many times do you get to se Sammy and Jimmy in the same sentence? It is kind of funny to me anyway! Your reply made me smile likea crazy person!

Monday, January 28, 2008, 10:00 AM

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Can you watch what you drink just like you watch what you eat? For instance, Gin and Tonics aren't nearly as bad as drinking a bear. You can even use tonic water. Wine, tons of calories...consume as little as possible. Same principle, dont drink too much just like don't eat too much. It's all about living and learning. Keep trying!

Monday, January 28, 2008, 12:57 PM

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Do you really think being so defensive is helping you???? Maybe you should have a few drinks, then read that guys comments. He didn't attack you. What he said really might be enlightening for many people.
Good luck to you

Monday, January 28, 2008, 1:03 PM

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MEOW! Did somebody have a bad day? Anonymous typing can be very cathartic. Please feel free to get it all out here instead of kicking the dog. Ego in an anonymous forum is not really what the thread started on. It started on "Does drinking sabotage your weight loss efforts" Yes it does. this is explicitely why I am giving the drinking a rest. The empty calories and the fact that your liver prioritzes the burning off of alcohol (cause its poison) before the burning of fat is why drinking sabotages your diet.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 11:06 AM

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OP Here. I am so thrilled that his turned out to be such an interesting thread. :) I just expected to get the college and young professionals explaining how they were able to work out, watch what they eat and have the occasional cocktail but still lose or maintain their weight. no Idea I would get the tee-totalers but I guess I should have know. nor the defended the drink to the end- but again I should expected it.

Anyone out there able to find a happy balance.
5:47's life sure does sound exciting- Are you able to lose weight or stay thin???

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 1:33 PM

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I was drinking pretty much every night (one or two beers after work) and then "partying" (5-8 drinks, usually whiskey and beer) 1-2 nights a week when I decided to start losing weight.
I have now cut it down to once a week or once every other week, and only when there is a reason (doesn't have to be a good reason, can just be "everyone is going out"). I figure I save over 1000 calories and $50 if I dont drink between the alcohol, the late night pizza and the hang over breakfast.
I have also changed my drinks from dark beers to light beers, from whiskey cokes to whiskey diets, and a new low-cal favorite is Stoli Blu with Soda water (tastes like blueberry muffins!).
The key is that when I do drink I don't punish myself with mean thoughts or starvation the next day. I figure a night out is just part of my lifestyle - and this weight loss is not some quick fix - it is a lifestyle change.
some background:
I am 24 - 3 years out of college. I partied a lot in college and then only on the weekends once I graduated. The daily drinking started about 6 months ago when I started dating my current boyfriend. He still has a drink every night but is very supportive of me cutting back big-time.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 1:56 PM

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I recently found a hangover cure that doesnt include pizza!

a banana (for potassium)
tons of vitamin C
tons of vitamin B
gatorade or propell helps the dehydration better than just water and they tase better than pedialyte

It totally works the banana and the vitamins made all the difference in the world! I wish someone would have told me this sooner!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 4:03 PM

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according to
Alcohol metabolizing pathways notwithstanding, even if binge drinkers, daily drinkers or heavy drinkers consume most of their calories from alcohol, if they eat very little, and remain in a calorie deficit, they will not get fat. Compound this with the hormonal effects and you witness the skinny, but under-nourished, unhealthy and atrophied alcoholic (the person you’d think would be most likely to have a beer belly).

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 4:10 PM

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Trust me it ain't that exciting. I spend all day in my little cube trying to save money for those trips that happen only about every other year. I live close to DC so dancing with O'Bama, that guy has been dancing all over town. I did not mean to sound pompous in that post. I was just trying to make a point. I apologize.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 7:40 PM

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I have a happy balance. I usually have a few drinks on Friday and Saturday night. I don't drink at all during the week unless it's a special occasion. I lost 25 pounds while doing this and have maintained my goal weight for over 2 years now! So yes, it can be done. I'm a young (27 YO) professional by the way.

On a side note, I just read in Women's Health today that it is better for you to consume the 1 alcoholic beverage per day recommended than none at all. CHEERS!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 8:00 PM

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You know I never realised that the your body prioritised burning off the alcohol before anything else. It makes a lot of sense when I actually think about it, but it's something that I hadn't though of before.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008, 8:29 PM

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Wednesday, January 30, 2008, 5:42 PM

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i just wanted to add . . . someone mentioned that gin and tonics are more diet friendly than beer but i don't think that is true. Tonic water has more sugar than you would guess, since it doesnt really taste sweet--10 calories per ounce. So i think once you add the gin it would be about the same as beer. But you can get diet tonic water if you are mixing your own drinks.

However i have also read that mixing diet colas with alcohol gets you drunk quicker because normally all the sugar slows absorption a bit--so be careful!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008, 6:16 PM

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Bump - for the person too lazy to use the search function.

Sunday, March 16, 2008, 12:08 PM

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you are such a miserable person for calling someone lazy. what do you care? don't search for or bump the thread if it is such a laborious task for you.

Your vibe stinks. Go away please. Seriously. Please. Go away.

Sunday, March 16, 2008, 12:33 PM

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I second that!

Sunday, March 16, 2008, 12:41 PM

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Tough crap - you're stuck with my snearing helpfulness.

Sunday, March 16, 2008, 2:00 PM

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Uh...that'd be 'sneering' ...

Sunday, March 16, 2008, 3:17 PM

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Sunday, March 16, 2008, 3:56 PM

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sorry what was the original question?

Even a shot of stoli has 100 calories so if you are hardcore that is unacceptable and if you are on a wicked strict diet that could throw you into a tailspin taking down your inhibitions which are at their last thread after a hard day.
I love a good beer but that is out I haven't had one for months b/c even guiness is too many calories.
Why take the risk of screwing up your hard won physique by having too many calories from compounded extra shots or snackhibitions being down?
(apart from the obvious joy of the buzz) Not drinking is part of the grit of dieting
Yippeekayay ! !

Monday, March 17, 2008, 10:32 AM

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I have found that alcohol does not inhibit my weight loss, unless, I am hungover the next day, and can not push myself as hard as I normally would in the gym.

But if I stay at normal limits, then no, I have found alcohol not to have an effect. But you have to do the following:

1) never drink alcohol on a empty stomach, always drink it with food.
2) It depends on the drink. I drink martini's and wine, and have not found that those drinks impact my weight. (even when I have six olives!)

I am sure that is not true with all drinks.

Saturday, November 13, 2010, 12:00 PM

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And yes, I have had problems with this. If I go over board on the drinks, eventually, I will bloat up and that will cause a temporary weight gain of 4 or 5 pounds! but it goes away after 4 days.. Still, its horrible. alcohol bloat is worse than pms bloat.

Saturday, November 13, 2010, 12:02 PM

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