How does alcohol affect the keto diet

(Bonnie) #1

I am 4 months into the low carb lifestyle. I am wondering how drinking low carb alcohol drinks effect the diet. I don’t usually drink during the week but usually have a few drinks on Friday and Saturday nights. Such as a vodka soda or a couple of glasses of Chardonnay. Still maintaining under 20 carbs a day.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #2

Start here and also check out the alcohol sub-category under Food. There are lots of discussions there about ethanol/alcohol.

(Stephanie ) #3

For me personally I haven’t had any issues with the occasional drink. I usually have a low carb beer michelob ultra, corona premier or vodka/rum with a diet soda 2-3 times a week. I have been keto since 2018 and have lost 80lbs.
Alcohol does affect me quicker and stronger than pre-keto so definitely be careful of how many drinks you have and how quickly. :blush:


It does the exact same thing that carbs do, it pulls you out of ketosis, prioritizes burning it off, then you’ll go back into ketosis when it’s all processed out.

(Bob M) #5

Supposedly, alcohol increases ketosis:

But your body will (again, supposedly) burn the alcohol first.

And Stephanie is correct: watch how much you drink, because alcohol can affect you much more.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #6

In the link I posted above is a chart of ethanol metabolism. The end products are water, CO2 and acetoacetate. So ethanol does not ‘kick you out of ketosis’. It interferes with lipolysis while the liver preferentially oxidizes the ethanol so if one is keto to lose weight/fat that could be an issue. But small amounts at infrequent intervals is not going to have a negative effect on ketosis, nor likely overall health. Large amounts at frequent intervals, of course, puts one at high risk of multiple negative health consequences. Any ‘carby effects’ are due to stuff added to it, not ethanol itself. So it does not have the same effect as eating carbs.

(Bob M) #7

Hard liquor is the way to go! :wink:

(BuckRimfire) #8

I wouldn’t say my tolerance for alcohol is dramatically lower when keto. For me, if there’s a difference, it’s small. YMMV, of course.

What I do notice is that if I drink nothing, I sleep WAY better than if I have two or more drinks. One drink can go either way.

(Maggie C.) #9

For me, I cannot drink alcohol if I want to lose weight. I just drink way too much and get ravenously hungry the next day, can’t do my intermittent fast schedule, crave carbs, and feel bloated for three days. I’ve learned the only way for me to be serious about keto is to get on the wagon.

(Bonnie) #10

Yes. I also sleep better if I don’t drink.

(Bob M) #11

How long have you been keto? I’m going on 8 years. I don’t remember it initially being that bad. Now, one drink hits me fast and hard. I usually only have one drink per week, sometimes two, usually (90+% of the time) on two different days. Have only had one drink in the last several weeks, though.

(BuckRimfire) #12

Just over three years.


Alcohol is a poison to the body. Simple as that. Your body does not want it…but can process it at a cost.

weight loss can slow definitely
your organs and systems work harder to get rid of the ‘irritant’ it does not want.
your body also dehydrates more while handling this process so one should drink more water as one drinks to flush faster
your body will put ‘all effort’ into burning any alcohol and flushing alcohol/processing any alcohol out of your system FIRST cause it is not wanted, so all your good changes get slowed down from that intake.

alot of crap with alcohol obviously LOL but many of us want some in our lives but key being drop beer…lc beer is junk. Like Ctv said go hard liquor and enjoy a bit cause the beer is hops loaded, grain loaded and ‘still’ not as refined as a ‘hard liquor is’ and there is a different if you partake in no beer stuffs and focus on a hard liquor drink when you want one.

Also remember that as you change more and more and ‘not cheat off your LC/Keto plan’ the more truly sensitive you will be to alcohol. Being carnivore for me as my chosen lifestyle, I drink I FEEL it fast now cause I hold plan and hold healing so when I put the rum booze into the mix that I do want every now and then, oh yea I know it and feel it but enjoy my walk into some drinking as I see fit…being older now I don’t want alcohol like I did when younger :slight_smile:

(Ohio ) #14

The little bit of alcohol in Kombucha kicks me out of ketosis. Along with sugar alcohols in foods.

Probably just me.

(Bob M) #15

How do you know that?

I personally gave up trying to figure out what happens with BHB. Not only do the test devices have a ton of error in them (got 0.2, 0.4, and 0.8 mmol/l at the same time using three different meters), but it turns out that ketones are much more dynamic than I thought:


If your ketones look like that, then it’s impossible to test them with pin-prick meters.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #16

Did you look at the ethanol metabolism chart I linked above? I fail to understand how something which metabolizes to ketones ‘kicks you out of ketosis’.

(Ohio ) #17

I’ll have a seizure. Test strips show no ketones. Blood shows high glucose. Like I said. Maybe just me. Everyone’s chemistry is different especially mine.

Phrases like “can’t overdue it on protein” and anything justifying alcohol consumption comes across as confirmation bias, wishful thinking, etc.

I’m not here to fight that.

When a Nephrologist tells me gluconeogenesis is happening all the time in everybody. On here it’s a anomaly.

I try to help where I can. Give epileptics somewhere to start; that run across this forum in the future. That’s about it.

(Michael - When reality fails to meet expectations, the problem is not reality.) #18

Agreed, gotta watch for confirmation bias and wishful thinking…


We found one study reporting the results of empirical research on kombucha in human subjects. We found no results for kombucha in Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tools,, or

In 2019, Kapp led a review of 310 studies on kombucha and found just one that examined the tea’s effects in humans. In the study, 24 adults with type 2 diabetes consumed kombucha for three months, which resulted in average blood sugar levels normalizing. But there were some major limitations to the work — not only was the study small, it didn’t include a control group.

(Bob M) #20

That seems awfully…biased.

Many of us, including me, can eat a heck of a lot of protein, with no ill effects. Can everyone? No. But there’s always at least one exception to any rule.

As for alcohol, I personally drink alcohol sometimes. Does it help me? It does seem to lower stress. Does it have any ill effects? If I keep it to one drink (or even two), none that I’ve been able to find.


@Ctv, nope I feel Hippie is right!

You can not bias one who has issues they are walking thru body chemistry issues and health med issues.

a boozy drink for one can be super normal and for another can be a walk thru he** truly…so??