Can I drink on keto?!
How much can I drink?
What can I drink?
When can I drink?
Will it knock me out of ketosis?
What are the best drinks for the keto diet…..
These are just a sample of all the drinking questions we get asked about the ketogenic diet. Questions on drinking far outweigh any other questions about keto!
And justifiably so! Because sometimes, well, you just need a drink. Especially after surviving 2020, I get it! We’re a little stressed these days and I have to admit I’ve probably drank more than I should have this year. And by probably, I mean definitely.
So after much research on all of the ways that I’ve desecrated my body this year, here is the end all blog post on drinking alcohol and the keto lifestyle.
The key word here being ‘lifestyle’.
Keto is a lifestyle for most of us, and when a diet becomes a lifestyle, I try to keep the 10/90 approach, especially with drinking. We have occasions, we have social events with friends, and we have friends. All of which are admittedly much more fun when alcohol is involved.
So in my blog this week, I’ll try to give you something we are really not getting enough of these days: Information. So that you may make your own informed decision.
I need to start at the beginning and explain how our body even processes alcohol because I think if you better understand the process of how our body digests alcohol, it will help you even more in making an informed decision.
When you consume the good stuff, your body breaks it down to acetaldehyde. This is what becomes toxic and creates significant damage to your liver.
But aside from that, if you are in ketosis and burning fat like an incinerator, the minute you start drinking, your fat burning will come to a screeching halt while your liver takes care of this new ‘toxic threat’.
It will now prioritize burning off the acetaldehyde over burning the fat, and you will be knocked out of ketosis and you will temporarily stop receiving the benefits of being in ketosis!
Now here is the good news (or the bad news), depending on how much you drink.
Your body will stop burning fat for a day if you only indulged in one or two drinks, but if you really went on a bender and got hammered, the fat burning may stop for up to 4 or 5 days. Either way, it will temporarily disrupt the ketone production of your liver.
Your liver needs to operate very efficiently while practicing the ketogenic diet because it is responsible for transforming the fatty acids that are in your blood from the copious amounts of fat we may consume, into keytones for energy.
Now here is a little interesting side note. If you go to the government website here in the United States, it takes the position that 1 drink for women and 2 drinks for men a day are not harmful at all and may even be beneficial. Remember when I said that I would give you all the information so you could make an informed decision? Guess who paid for the study that rendered those results. That’s right! The alcohol industry.
So here is the damage alcohol may do to your body:
- Since your body sees it as a toxin, it may lead to inflammation
- May cause sorosis of the liver
- May cause a fatty liver
- Depletes your body of vitamins, especially B vitamins
- Drinking is very dehydrating. The ‘hangover headach is your brain communicating to you that it is dehydrated and can’t function properly!
YES! Yes there is!
You will be a cheap date! When you are in ketosis, the alcohol you drink does not go past go, does not collect $200, but goes straight to the liver, and into your blood stream faster. Because of this you will feel the effects faster, and recover faster. But unfortunately, because if you are in ketosis you don’t retain water, so you will more rapidly become dehydrated. That ‘hangover headache’ you get? That’s your brain desperately trying to communicate to you that is needs water
As a connoisseur of beers around the world, it pains me to tell you to just forget them, and pretend they don’t exist. They are super high in carbs, they create phytoestrogens in your body and beer contains gluten (Except for the month of October when Sam Adams puts their Octoberfest on draft). that doesn’t count.
If you’re going to drink, and no judgement here, because I know I will be partaking every now and again, stick with distilled alcohol, the best being a great vodka, tequila, (yes, I said tequila) or gin.
Wine is not a bad choice either, especially a dry white, which usually carries only 2.7g of carbs with it.
So all is not lost people! We do have choices! Just stay informed, stay in moderation and stay KETO!
Here are some resources for further investigation: