Diet and Alcohol

Alcohol Abuse and Nutrition

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It’s important to remember that alcohol has a significant affect on your mental and physical abilities, but it also has an impact on your dietary health and nutrition. When we drink, it’s easy to forget how many calories, in addition to alcohol, we are consuming with each beverage. Many students don’t realize that one evening of drinking can be equivalent to a meal or even an entire day’s worth of calories!

The Calorie and Carbohydrate Breakdown – Food for Thought

  • A 12-ounce beer has 150 calories and 13 carbohydrate grams.
    = a 12 inch Crunchy Thin Crust pizza with Ham from Domino’s (148 calories and 14 carbs)
  • A 12-ounce light beer has 100 calories and 5 carbohydrate grams.
  • A 6-ounce glass of white wine has 120 calories and 1.4 carbohydrate grams.
    = an order of CinnaStix or Cheesy Bread from Domino’s (123 calories each)
  • A 6-ounce glass of red wine has 128 calories and 3 carbohydrate grams.
  • A 1.5-ounce shot of 80-proof liquor, such as vodka, rum, tequila, or gin has 100 calories.
  • A 1.5-ounce shot of 100-proof liquor has 124 calories.
  • If having a mixed drink, you must also include the total number of calories for your beverage in the calculation. For example, 2 ounces of rum plus 4 ounces of cola total 182 calories and 12 carbohydrate grams.
    = 12 inch Crunchy Thin Crust pizza with Sausage from Domino’s (181 calories).
  • Liqueurs frequently have higher sugar and fat contents, contributing to greater calories. For example, 5 ounces of a popular cream liqueur totals 468 calories.
    = a 14 inch Ultimate Deep Dish ExtravaganZZa Feast from Domino’s (468 calories)

As detailed in an article by Nanci Grayson, RD, alcohol consumption directly impacts nutrition.1717

So what should you eat before you go out drinking?

  • Protein, Protein, Protein!
  • Many people mistakenly believe that you should consume carbohydrates before going out drinking to help make sure you don’t become intoxicated too quickly, however this is incorrect. You wan to eat protein, not carbohydrates or greasy fatty foods prior to a night out.
  • Fat helps absorb and metabolize the alcohol quicker, which is why women have a lower tolerance then men, because they have a higher body fat percentage and less muscle then men.
  • So before you go out to celebrate, make sure you have a meal high in protein.