Friday, September 2, 2011

Alcohol & Dieting

visual of cartoon alcoholic beverages.
The reason why alcoholic drinks cause people to gain weight is because they contain a lot of calories. Pure alcohol has 7kcal per gram and 5kcal of those 7 are used as energy in the body. Protein and saccharides, complex sugars, have 4kcal per gram. Alcohol is second to lipids, or fat which has 9kcal per gram, for highest calories per gram.

Some people think that beer and sake have high calorie amounts while whiskey and shochu do not have as much. While it is true that beer and sake do have a high calorie amount, only 3 shot glasses of whiskey (about 130cc) has about 400kcal. When you try to get the same amount of alcohol through beer, you would need to drink 3 medium sized bottles (1100cc). In the case of sake, you would consume 400kcal in about two and a half bottles (500cc). Also keep in mind that the higher the alcohol content, the higher the calories will be.

chart showing amount of alcohol, whiskey, sake and beer, to equal 400kcal.cartoon of a Japanese man getting drunk

As we can see, whiskey does include a high amount of calorie so we can’t say that whiskey does not contribute to weight gain. In short, any type of alcohol, if we consume too much, can easily lead to obesity.

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