Sounds obvious doesn't it, but too many people are blissfully unaware (or in denial). Drinking alcohol when you are watching your weight will lead to piling on the pounds and not achieving your goals for slimming - fact!
Week in, week out, most of us drink some alcohol of some sort. For the vast majority of us there's no thought of the calories involved or the implication for our daily calorie intake in relation to weight.
As with everything, some people tend to drink more than others and some people choose to avoid it altogether. Alcohol is basically a poison and if you drink too much, you feel ill. Your liver helps to metabolise it out of your body at the fastest rate possible. The liver removes it from your body at a set rate of about 1 unit per hour. This is prioritised above the metabolising the food you consume so you tends to burn off calories consumed through drinking alcohol and the calories from food tend to be deposited in the nearest fat deposit.
Containing 7 kcalories per gram, alcoholic beverages, especially beers and ciders usually contain sugars and have very few nutrients. Guinness has a high iron content but also has many calories.
Drinking alcohol tends to influence the foods you eat as well. This can be noticed through the stimulation of the appetite and increases your desire to consume fatty or sugary foods. Many people like to eat curry, fry-ups or other high fat foods to counteract the effects the day after.
Drinking a glass of red wine is useful as a countermeasure for heart disease. It performs well in this task due to the bioflavonoid content.
Around 100ml or a small glass is sufficient per day but according to Health Authority Guidelines, a man should consume no more than 21 units per week while a woman has the luxury of being limited to a poultry 12 units. Preferably though these should be consumed periodically during the week and not all in one go.
There are various effects of drinking such products. These include short term side effects of impaired perception and reduced reaction time, limited hand-eye coordination and can result in a lack of balance, strength, muscular endurance and accuracy.
According to a study conducted by the television programme Top Gear though, it appears that drinking and driving is less dangerous than driving while being fatigued.
Long term effects can include liver, brain and muscle damage as well as obesity, liver disease, hypertension, stomach ulcers and mouth cancer. As alcohol is a diuretic, it promotes dehydration. It impairs the absorption of micronutrients and water is the best thing to consume in order to counteract the effects of drinking heavily for the purpose of dehydration.