How to Stay Slim and Still Drink Alcohol

Two Methods:Managing How You DrinkDrinking and Keeping Your Diet

Many people enjoy having a few drinks with friends or having a drink with dinner. However, these drinks can add extra calories and result in weight gain or struggles with maintaining weight. There are a few things you can do to limit the amount of extra calories from these drinks and still maintain a healthy weight.

Method 1
Managing How You Drink

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    Don't drink excessively. Drinking too many alcoholic beverages will add excess calories to your diet. These extra calories can cause you to gain weight in addition to potentially causing other health problems related to to drinking. Always drink in moderation.
    • Drink no more than two alcoholic beverages per night.
    • Avoid binge drinking. Binge drinking can cause health problems and won't save you any calories.[1]
    • Heavy alcohol consumption will contribute to weight gain, no matter what type of alcohol is consumed.[2]
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    Never drink when hungry. Make sure that you have something to eat before drinking anything alcoholic. Alcohol consumption can lower impulse control, which can lead you to make poor food choices, especially if you are hungry.[3][4]
    • Eat before drinking to avoid making poor dietary choices.
    • Eat while drinking to help you feel full and avoid drinking excessive alcohol.
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    Learn what counts as one drink. Some types of alcohol have different serving sizes. In order to best know exactly how many drinks you are actually having, as well as the full amount of calories you are consuming, stick to the following standards:[5]
    • One beer consists of 12 fluid ounces or 355 milliliters.
    • One serving of wine will be around 5 fluid ounces or 148 milliliters.
    • A distilled spirit has the smallest serving size, only 1.5 fluid ounces or 44 milliliters.
    • Any increase in portion size will also increase the amount of calories being consumed.
    • Many restaurants and bars serve drinks that contain several servings in one glass.
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    Drink plenty of water. Alcohol has a dehydrating effect on the body and you will need to replenish any water that is lost when drinking. Drinking water can also help you drink less alcohol, which results in fewer calories being consumed.[6]
    • After you are done drinking alcoholic beverages, switch to water. Drinking water after alcohol can help immediately start rehydration.
    • Drink a glass of water in between alcoholic drinks. This can help you drink less alcohol and stay hydrated.
    • Make sure to drink plenty of water the day after having any amount of alcohol.

Method 2
Drinking and Keeping Your Diet

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    Find drinks that contain fewer calories. Not all alcoholic drinks have the same amount of calories. If your favorite drink has a lot of calories, consider switching to a drink that has a lower caloric content. Consider a light beer or hard liquor without mixers, which add calories and sugar. Be aware of how many calories are in your drinks to help keep within your daily allowance.[7]
    • An average beer has around 215 calories.
    • A glass of wine will generally contain 126 calories.
    • Moderately active males should limit caloric intake to 2,800 calories a day.[8]
    • Females who are moderately active should maintain a caloric intake of 2,220 calories a day.[9]
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    Be aware of hidden calories. Mixed drinks and cocktails can have extra ingredients which contain calories of their own. Any drinks that have added sodas, sugars, juice, or alcohol will also have added calories. These added calories can lead to weight gain.[10]
    • Use calorie-free or low-calorie ingredients when making a mixed drink. Try club soda or seltzer. Ask for diet mixers, such as diet tonic water or diet ginger ale or Coke.
    • Combining two or more types of alcohol will also combine the amount of calories in each type.
    • Many drink mixers contain a large amount of sugar. Excess sugar consumption should be avoided when trying to lose or maintaining weight.
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    Eat a balanced diet. Combining moderate alcohol consumption with a healthy diet can be a great way to enjoy food and drink while maintaining a healthy weight. Make sure your diet is nutritious and your drinks aren't contributing excess calories.
    • Limit sugar intake. Excess sugar in a diet can lead to weight gain and health issues. Limit your daily intake of sugar to 100 calories worth or around six to nine teaspoons.
    • Protein should be a critical part of your diet. Favor plant-based sources of protein such as beans or lentils. Meat- and poultry-based sources of protein should be as lean as possible.
    • Eat the best kinds of carbohydrates to provide energy. Try eating fruits and vegetables or beans and legumes for a great source of carbohydrates.
    • Fiber is another important part of any diet. Again, make sure you are eating plenty of fruits and vegetables in addition to beans and peas.
    • Fats are still required in a diet, although certain types are considered more healthy than others. Try to only consume fats from olive and canola oils or lean fish and poultry.


  • Know yourself and your tolerance type: If you are a healthy person and you drink, learn your limits and maintain your level of hydration. If you know you got to lose a few extra pounds and your tolerance is high, lose the beer and add the discipline to your drink limit.
  • Don't go back on your own word and drink in excess: if you tell yourself and everyone around you that you'll have just 2, stick to it!
  • Remember: Binge drinking is just bad overall and won't ever save you calories and could lead to a trip to the emergency room.
  • Keep mental/written track of the time it's taking you to drink and exactly how much you are drinking when you do.
  • Take responsibility and ask someone you trust like a coach or trainer to hold you accountable by checking in on your "Night Outs."

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