I have been prompted to write this post by recent discussions with a few clients about how much alcohol they drink on a weekly basis and I have been genuinely surprised (not in a good way) about some of the responses I have been given.
Firstly, i think it’s important to confirm the government guidelines for alcohol consumption:
For females the recommended levels are approx 14 units per week
For males the recommended levels are approx 21 units per week
So, straight into the interesting stuff now………..
Units of Alcohol
- A large glass of wine (250ml) has approx 2.8 units of alcohol which is pretty much the daily recommended allowance for females.
- A small glass of wine (125ml) has approx 1.5 units of alcohol.
- A pint of beer has approx 2.5-3 units of alcohol depending on the strength
So, 1 large glass of wine or 2 small glasses or 1 pint of beer and that’s it for the day!
In recent times I have had some frank and honest discussions with clients where the weekly number of units consumed has been as high as 40, which is twice or three times higher than recommended levels depending on gender.
Calories in Alcohol
- A large glass (250ml) of wine contains approx 250 calories
- A small glass (125ml) of wine contains approx 125 calories
- A pint of beer contains approx 200 calories
So, even if you stick to the recommended guidelines you are adding between 1400-1750 calories to your weekly diet. If we look at that earlier number of 4o units per week that could be as much as a whopping 4000 extra calories per week!!
Some Quick Wins
- Stop having large glasses of wine and drop down to small glasses -without doubling up on the number of small glasses!
- Have at least 2 consecutive nights each week where you don’t drink, this will give your liver a break as well as reducing calories-in for this period.
- Choose a beer or wine with a lower alcoholic content.
- Choose to drink a small bottle of beer rather than a pint.
- Only drink at home with a meal; pour one glass and then put the bottle away.
In summary, if you are looking to improve your general health and fitness levels or looking to lose weight then you must look at your alcoholic intake and address any problems in this area.
So, your challenge is to half your alcoholic intake this week!
Imagine how good that would feel; Think of those extra calories that wouldnt’ be going into your system.
And remember if you are currently exercising on a regular basis that’s great, but a a tough workout or exercise session can all be undone with just one glass of wine!
As always I would welcome your thoughts and comments below………