Many people on the keto diet struggle with the decision to have an alcoholic drink. Not because all dieters feel cravings for it like they would sugar, but rather that they hear so often about “keto-safe” drinks, yet don’t get a solid answer as to what they are.
Alcohol isn’t needed to live, so if you want to cut it out completely, that’s OK. But those who like to wind down with a beverage can do so if they’re choosy. They also can’t drink too much. Here’s why!
Alcohol And Ketosis
Sugary cocktails and carby beers have to be nixed from the diet right away, but even straight liquor can have an impact on your journey to ketosis. This is because your liver has a bigger job than just breaking down carbs and fat for energy – it has to clean out toxic substances. Alcohol is one of them, and its toxicity is what causes inebriation. The more you drink, the more toxins get into your bloodstream, and these affect your neurotransmitters to create that drunk feeling.
When you consume alcohol, the liver will prioritize metabolizing this new substance instead of fat. Even if it’s just a small amount of alcohol, the liver knows that it’s a toxin, and it has to break it down first so that it doesn’t harm the rest of your body. This will stop ketone production in the liver, stalling your diet.
What Can I Drink On Keto?
Keto dieters have to choose their drinks very carefully, and the easiest choices are liquors that have no carbs or sugars. Clear liquors at about 40% alcohol are the best, and these can include:
If you don’t like drinking these straight, choose a no-carb mixer or chaser, like club soda (be careful – even tonic water is very high in sugar!).
Finding an appropriate wine or beer is harder. You can drink versions with low levels of sugar or carbohydrates, but even then they have to be consumer sparingly. Drink red wine and try to avoid dry reds and white wine. Cheap wine can be full of sugar, so be selective. For beer, only choose low-carb or light beers, and keep these to a bare minimum.
Take Note: You Will Feel The Alcohol More Quickly On Keto
Another reason to cut down on your intake of adult beverages while on a keto diet is that your body will process the alcohol much quicker. It’s sort of how people feel a drink when they haven’t eaten all day. Your metabolism processes glucose quickly, and this slows down the speed at which you metabolize alcohol. With your glycogen levels depleted, the alcohol will be processed much faster.
Many people go on the keto diet to lose weight safely. If you’re one of them, it’s best to avoid alcohol consumption altogether. If you enjoy a recreational drink, however, make sure to drink responsibly!