In case you’re wondering – yes, you can have some alcohol occasionally on Keto, if it’s something that you enjoy. Some alcoholic beverages are better than others though.
In general, you should avoid drinks like sweet cocktails and alcopops as much as possible. For example, a typical Long Island Iced Tea has 32 grams of carbs per 12 oz. and something like a Smirnoff Ice has 31 grams of carbohydrates. Maybe you’re even able to mix yourself a sweetened cocktail without any carbs, but forget the ones you get at a bar.
Next we have beer: Try to avoid beer, as it’s usually higher in sugar – a 12 oz. bottle of Corona or Guinness has about 14 grams for example. If you can’t live without the occasional beer, then go for a light beer which can have between 2-7g of carbs, so choose the right one. Still, don’t overdo it.
Wine: If you enjoy drinking wine then dry wine is your best bet, either white or red. One 5 oz glass of dry wine usually has between 2-4g of carbs. Sweet wines have more sugar.
Hard liquors and spirits: Unflavored, pure liquors like Vodka, Tequila, Gin, Whiskey, Rum, Brandy or Scotch have 0 carbs. So you can include some occasionally if that’s what you’re craving for. Their high volume of alcohol still blocks your metabolism, so even if you’re drinking hard liquors that have no carbs in them and your blood readings show you you’re still in Ketosis, your body still has to metabolize the alcohol first, before anything else. That means the alcohol has to be burned before burning fat or even carbohydrates for energy. As a result, it will halt fat-loss during that time. Also, they still have calories that you need to take into account. Alcohol is never going to be beneficial for your health, even if it has no carbs.
Sorry if I’m coming off too negative here. This doesn’t mean that you can’t include some alcohol every once in a while if you believe it significantly improves the quality of your life. Just keep in mind it will not help you lose weight if that is your primary goal.
Now that we got that out of the way, you should also know, or you probably already realized, that you get drunk a lot faster on a Ketogenic Diet, maybe twice as quickly as to what you were used to before. If you’re trying to save money, you might even say you’re getting more bang for your buck!
No but seriously, just be more careful the first time you drink after starting Keto.
You might also experience an intense hangover the next day. To avoid that as much as possible, make sure you stay well-hydrated when you’re drinking alcohol and drink plenty of water.
This website displays the alcohol by volume, the carb content as well as the calories for a lot of drinks. If you’re not sure how many carbs your drink has, it might be worth checking out!
I personally only drink very rarely, I might have a small glass of white wine once a month. I’m grateful to have realized a couple of years ago that I don’t need alcohol to have fun. But I also never enjoyed drinking that much before, so that’s just my personal preference.