Why do you think you need alcohol?


(Ian Keith) #1

I have recently came across a group of people who practice low-carb keto diets who will jump through hoops to justify drinking any kind of alcohol, and came to ask myself “what is it that these people feel they need to drink?” So i compiled their most common objections to abstaining from alcohol.

Not even kind of. Mayo clinic even says “If you don’t drink alcohol, don’t start because of potential health benefits.” This is because many of the health benefits with alcohol actually come from the fruit and ingredients within the beverage. I know we don’t like too many fruits, but a small portion of fruit is better than any alcohol says Berkeley wellness. “Wine does contain healthful plant chemicals, but no fiber and hardly any vitamins or minerals…though whole fruits are preferable. Fruit juice contains much less fiber and a lot more calorie, almost all from sugar compared to whole fruit.” So a small portion of whole fruit is preferable. With wine and beers you also get ethyl alcohol which will metabolize into acetaldehyde which is a toxic carcinogen, and will slow down or stop ketosis. This is mentioned in this study by Jennifer L. Steiner and Charles H. Lang which states “It has long been recognized that alcohol (i.e., ethanol) consumption perturbs lipid metabolism causing adipose tissue dysfunction”

This is probably the sole reason to drink for many people. Can you relax other ways sure, but it is easier to have a drink with friends. I like to go out with friends and have a drink without getting the judgmental stares when I order a non-alcoholic beer or wine, but the heckling and peer pressure i often cave to a “real” drink which is very detrimental to my healthy keto life style. It is hard to actually tell what the psychological benefits are because many of these studies are observational and epidemiological which isn’t necessarily hard science. One proven side effect of alcohol is it dampens your inhibition in your frontal lobe and therefore make poor decisions like ordering the nacho tower.

Yes, many alcoholic beverages are low carb however they are still high calorie (1 gram of alcohol has 7 calories). So you will intake about as many calories as a can of coke of equal volume. Now I know not many people count calories, but calories are a factor with ketogenic diets just like other diets it depends on your health goals. Every drink with alcohol in it will push you further and further from ketosis even without carbohydrates in the beverage due to the way the liver has to jump through hoops to process the alcohol.

The real question is why do people fight to keep drinking even modest amounts of alcohol? I don’t know, but my guess is that there is a feeling of being a part of the group, and this feeling has been ingrained in us by our culture, and advertising as mentioned in the study “Exposure to Alcohol Advertisements and Teenage Alcohol-Related Problems” by Jerry L. Grenard, et al. If you would like to drink alcohol on a cheat day or something like that or during a wedding that is fine, but to have a drink every day or even on the weekends I believe is not very keto.

Let me know what you think. Do you agree or disagree, any research you have found, or how do you manage your alcohol intake. I’m interested.

(Lazy, Dirty Keto 😝) #2

So I don’t punch someone in the face.

Just kidding. Well, mostly. But I enjoy the occasional night out, maybe once a month and I feel zero guilt for it. Not here to judge how others live their lives.

(Christopher Kornelsen) #3

For me it’s very social. I have almost quit keto because my bosses invite me out for beers and I sit there with a water. Luckily I found low carb beer. Secondly I LOVE wine with steak. And I also love a good rum and coke. Well now its diet Pepsi. Third being a little buzzed really feels awesome and is fun. I live one life I’m not going to forego enjoyment of it because its .01% less healthy. (I drink vert seldomly). Chronic drinkers have bigger problems

(Allie) #4

I don’t, nasty stuff if you ask me. Last time I had any was the January before I stumbled into keto in the May, just didn’t want anymore.

(Joey) #5

A glass of red wine with dinner is a delight to be savored … It enhances the intensity/contrast of food flavors, makes me feel wonderful (even more so on LCHF diet), and is so much more enjoyable than yet another glass of ice water - which I drink throughout the day.

If I absolutely had to give it up, I guess I would. But it’s clearly not creating any problems- at least based on daily BHB/glucose blood levels, weight, girth, and high energy levels.

Full disclosure: On keto, I have given up those OTHER alcoholic drinks I used to love, e.g., hard ciders, margaritas, double IPA beers… I definitely miss them, but there’s nothing like a rounded glass of a decent dry red wine with dinner to ease the pain :wink:

(Bob M) #6

I look forward all week to the one drink (sometimes two, if I’m on vacation or sometimes) I have that week. I usually have wine, gin, or a white Russian (the latter a bit higher in carbs, but has a shot of cream to provide saturated fat to help protect the liver). Sometimes an aperitif. Tonight, I’ll be out with the wife, and we’ll likely have one drink together at dinner.

I have been at this level of alcohol use for 6 years. During that time, I’ve lost about 60 pounds, have gained about 10 pounds of muscle. Have a CAC scan score of zero as of about a month ago.

If you don’t need alcohol, don’t drink it. If it causes you to go off the diet, don’t drink it.

(Dirty Lazy Keto'er, Sucralose freak ;)) #7

Oh boy. I usually just try to avoid this subject. Yes, of course it is legal to drink alcohol in this country. But it’s a crying shame prohibition didn’t work.
No matter how you slice it, alcohol is a “hard core drug” that ruins more lives, destroys more families, and causes more deaths, than all the illegal drugs combined ! This is not just my opinion, but number based facts.

If an individual can drink responsibly, and not hurt themselves, there families and loved one, or complete strangers around them, hey that’s great. Too bad so many people can’t.

Ask any law enforcement person what percentage of there calls… Especially calls concerning some sort of violence, had something to do with alcohol. The percentage is rediculous. Often more than half. Alcohol costs everyone a lot of $$$, even people who don’t drink it.

So you might wonder how a person becomes so anti-alcohol as I am ? Well, my father (an otherwise great guy) was a hard core alcoholic. It would have killed him if cancer didn’t beat it to him. I always felt like alcohol robbed me of a lot of our relationship.
But that wasn’t enough. Took about 10 years of binge drinking myself to figure out how nasty that drug is. Thank god I never killed myself, or anyone around me, and most especially, that I didn’t become addicted to that crap.

Haven’t had a drop of alcohol in 30 years. And if I could go back and do it again, I would have never had a drop to begin with. Not any other hard core drugs for that matter.

(Ian Keith) #8

Thank you for sharing your story, and congratulations on staying away from the stuff for over 30 years! Thats awesome.

(Susan) #9

I rarely drink, (even pre-Keto) but I do have a few drinks on occasion. These are the nights we have a concert out (last one was April, next one is Oct, one in Nov, then Jan and March) on those nights I will have 3 ounces of vodka in water. I have a few on New Year’s Eve also, when my best friend and her hubby come over to our house for the evening and we have a nice time. I never get wasted anymore (that was my uni days, not now!).

('Jackie P') #10

@Ian_Keith. I’m sure you didn’t mean it to be, but I think the tone of the question is a little judgemental!
I don’t think I need a drink, but I do know I enjoy a drink!:slightly_smiling_face:
I drink a lot less since I started keto, but I am a social drinker and I am a sociable girl! Having said that, most of my socialising is booze free, breakfasts or lunches with the ladies or my mum! Walks on the seafront or on the Downs. But when I go out for dinner, or have friends over I do enjoy a gin and slimline and a glass of wine or two! I very rarely, if ever get messed up these days, and I’m happy. If my weight loss stalls I can stop.
I totally appreciate that alcohol can be problematic for people and I would always wish them well and hope they get the support they need.

(Scott) #11

Since you asked.
The good for you theory is all over the map. I suspect that between not wanting to recommend a beneficial amount, people lying about what they drink and the slow nature of data to prove or disprove this theory we will never know the answer.

This has not been a problem for me. Even when I have had way too much like on my last beach vacation. Beer all day, scotch starting at 5 o’clock, wine with dinner, single malt scotch to finish I never had a single “bad” carb other than the beer. I find keto eating to be very easy and in a year have not cheated once. I even skip the wedding cake at weddings. This may get interesting as two of my kids get married this year. When I eat Mexican add they place that bowl of tortilla chips in front of me I don’t touch them but I do get the beer.

My scotch has zero carbs and with the calories from fat I eat I am not going to sweat the alcohol calories. My wine has about 4g of carbs and I can budget for that.

Maybe not keto for you but for me yes. I have lost weight just fine and feel great. Keto allows us all to set our own keto rules and I set my carbs to around 50g daily. Why, because I like wine, veggies and sometimes beer. I get up at 4:15 am each morning to run daily, visit the gym three day a week and have wine and scotch everyday. I have had a drink everyday for the last forty years and don’t intend on stopping now. I am about 6 pounds from goal weight.

(Cristian Lopez) #12

Too bad I swore to never drink a drop of alcohol since I was 14, Your liver prioritizes to get rid of it because its toxic. Why would anyone ingest something toxic.
Its a fallacy you cant argue against.

(Cristian Lopez) #13

Drinking alcohol leads to a loss of coordination, poor judgment, slowed reflexes, distorted vision, memory lapses, and even blackouts. Alcohol can damage every organ in your body. It is absorbed directly into your bloodstream and can increase your risk for a variety of life-threatening diseases, including cancer.

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(Scott) #14

I agree with this completely. I have learned over the years that there are happy drunks and mean drunks. Thankfully my wife and kids are all happy when we get together because no one wants to be around a mean drunk.

(Bob M) #15

Could you name something you ingest that isn’t toxic? You can die from drinking too much water. Is water “toxic”?

Everything has a range of toxicity. Alcohol has that range too.

If you believe alcohol is that poisonous, don’t drink it.

(Scott) #16

This is where I deploy my favorite Frank Sinatra quote
“I feel sorry for a man that doesn’t drink, when he gets up in the morning that’s the best he is going to feel all day”

(Bob M) #17

Where did you get all those studies? You realize I can go find many studies (granted, they will be epi) showing the opposite?

Moderator, please shut this down. This is going to be a religious argument, not an actual discussion.

(Cristian Lopez) #18

When you drink an alcoholic beverage, one-third of the liquid goes into your stomach and the other two-thirds ends up in your small intestine. The alcohol itself is absorbed into your blood from there.

Your kidneys filter some alcohol out, but the remainder is sent to your liver. Here, the alcohol is metabolized, or broken down, into a chemical called acetaldehyde, which is toxic. Your body knows it’s bad for you, so the acetaldehyde is burned as instead of fat like usual.

Drink too much, and two things happen: the fat that should be used by the body gets stored in your liver, and excess acetaldehyde damages liver cells. Too much fat in the liver causes fatty liver disease. Symptoms include abdominal pain, fatigue, and weight loss.

('Jackie P') #19

@KidKeto, you are a really inspirational person. My niece, who is 20, has pledged to never drink. My brother and SIL drink, probably a little more than is good for them, and she has grown up seeing too much really. Never abuse or real drunkeness, but slurred speech and the change in personality that is confusing to a child.
I totally admire her decision. She is a bright girl and currently at University. She was relieved to find many students of like mind. I think there is a change in society and we should embrace it. When I was young we rebelled by getting “wasted”, now younger people rebel by staying sober - …love it😊
I loved your pic with Dr Berry by the way.

(Cristian Lopez) #20

I keep track of them in document I have made about my ketogenic journey, The fundamental reason I started keto was to heal my failing liver and get off meds that were ruining my life. After 2 years, I showed no signs of liver damage ----> my last scan showed that my enzymes regulated, no more meds as of 2 years ago, and I will take more caution in protecting my liver and use my situation as an example to others on the matter.