Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Beer Drinking Experience

This week, I decided to take a break from the challenge of eating healthily anywhere as I wanted to share some findings with all of you. We will continue the challenge once again next week. Also, this break will ensure that everybody doesn’t get too bored with reading the same thing again and again.

Anyway, I went for a party last weekend, and drank a total of 6 beers. Ok I know that is a small amount by some people’e standard, but since I rarely drink these days, believe me, 6 beers was enough to tip me over. Now if you are wondering why I am posting this in my blog, I believe I have found the reason for why alcohol makes you put on weight. What’s better, now that I know the reasons, I believe I am quite close to finding a definite cure for the beer belly…. Meaning how to drink beer and avoid that beer belly. That will be in another post. But for this post, I just want to share with everyone, the reason why drinking alcohol makes you put on weight.

By the end of the night, after I had consumed my 6 beers, I was extremely hungry. I honeslty felt like I hadn’t eaten all day. So what did I do…. You guessed it, I visited a Mamak nearby to fill this hunger which felt like it was burning a hole in my stomach. I also noticed that at that point, I had this bad craving for Roti Canai or other simple starches. So instead of eating 2 Roti Canai’s I decided to make it into a Roti Telur and had plain ice water.

The next morning when I woke up, yet again I felt extremely hungry. Of course this was partly due to the fact that my stomach was emptying itself at a rapid rate the next morning… also better known as the “beer shits” to some. Usually, when I don’t drink, I don’t really feel hungry in the morning. I just force myself to eat a slice of toast. But this time… it felt like the night before… like I had been fasting for a whole 24 hours. Again, there was this craving for simple carbohydrates. I ate 2 slices of toast (whole meal bread) and an hour later, I was hungry again. Since I only woke up at 10am, I decided to have an early lunch and see how things proceed.

So I ate my lunch (I think it was Wantan mee) and I ate the usual portion I would normaly eat. 2 hours after lunch, I felt hungry again. OK I think you can see where this is going. I literally felt hungry all day. I couldn’t believe how quickly my stomach kept begging me for more food. It was riddiculous.

So based on this observation, I figured out 2 things:-

1) Yes, alcohol itself has high calorie content. So if you are going to drink, you need to cut out that additional calories somewhere else. If you drink once a week, you need to find out how much you drink on average, and start minusing out those calories through out the week by eating smaller meals and so on. So when you do drink, you have created enough deficit, where the total for the whole week is still the same.
2) These hunger pangs are probably the main culprit for you putting on weight. I drank on a Friday night and I think the on Saturday (recovery day) I ended up eating almost twice as much as my usual. That’s quite a bit.

I checked with some friends who drink all the time and still stay thin and here is what they said. Most of them don’t feel hungry the next day. Which means, whenever they drink, they actually lose their appetite the next day and it slowly comes back to normal the day after that. On top of that, most of these guys are very active. They play lots of football (maybe 3 times a week) so there are additional calories burnt there as well. So when you combine these 2 factors, it all balances out which results in no weight gained.

I got the active part covered, now it just comes down to the eating. Maybe I need to feed my hunger with high fiber foods which take longer to break down, and also less fattening and this should equate the entire formula. I am still doing a little bit more research on how alcohol consumption affects muscle tissue (since I train for muscle mass)… so once I have that sorted out, I might actually try it out on myself and see what happens. Maybe drink every weekend for 2 months while cutting down on food and see if I do gain any weight. If I don’t I would have successfully discovered the formula on How to drink beer and not have a beer belly.

As usual, look forward to hearing your comments on this issue.


The Corporate Athlete said...

I don't think that you really need to drink beer to have a beer belly. I think most people who drink beer do have beer bellies because of their lifestyle i.e. hang out with friends until late hours. As you mentioned, those who are active and drink beer do stay slim ... :).
-just a two-cents view-

Rajan said...

CA: Good insight. But those days when i used to drink a lot, i was a lot fatter too. no real beer tummy (i think my workouts saved me) but i was quite fat looking. When i stopped, i lost so much weight and toned up almost immediately. perhaps i can share my transformation pictures with all of you in one of my future postings.

gunther_furlong said...

I guess no more tower for u ! :)

Rajan said...

GF: Hehehehehe... once in a while can-lah.... but not too often i guess

anfield devotee said...

What is the point of NOT having a beer belly?!!?

Takes years to build a decent sized one.

At leaset ye have something to show fer yer "investments" . . .

Rajan said...

AD: Hehehehehe... was wondering what your comment on this would be. now i know.

dailymuscle said...

Studies have shown that alcohol causes your body to store fat in the abdominal area - so that, plus all those extra calories = beer belly.

Secondly, alcohol stops all fat burning processes in your body when you consume it.

Rajan said...

DM: Thanks for the great tips. You are right about that. I did do a feature on alcohol and the body some time back, but i guess everyone still wants to know if there is a way to party hard and still look good. Guess your comments sums it up pretty well.

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