Why Avoid Alcohol During A Fat Loss Phase?
The Hidden Issue with Alcohol
- Fat (has an unlimited storage capacity – stored as bodyfat/intra-muscular triglycerides)
- Carbohydrate (around 400g stored as muscle/liver glycogen)
- Protein (no real storage system for amino acids due to its dynamic/functional nature)
Training and Alcohol
- Additional calories from both the alcohol, and the questionable food choices after.
- The absence of a storage system for alcohol means oxidation of other nutrients are put on hold.
- When you combine glucose (carbs) with alcohol, chances are you have overshot your calorie target fat oxidation even further, it can put us at risk of storing any excess foods we consume in this period.
- Your training performance may suffer the next day or so depending on your tolerance, recovery and individual metabolism.
How Can We Minimise Damage from Alcohol?
- Try and limit alcohol to strictly once per week. Better yet, save it for just special occasions.
- If it’s going to be a heavy session, stick to protein and green vegetables during the day. You want to keep fats and carbs low here to create a ‘buffer’ of calories. Similarly, you can do the same even if it’s only going to be a few drinks by adjusting your fats and/or carbs down a little in the day.
- Opt for spirits and diet mixers to reduce overall calories. Bear in mind though, this won’t avoid the reduction in fat oxidation, so it’s not a free pass!