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Alcohol and Weight Loss: The Science Behind Why Drinking Inhibits Fat Burning

Alcohol and Weight Loss: The Science Behind Why Drinking Inhibits Fat Burning

Quick Summary

  • When it comes to alcohol and weight loss, an addiction to alcohol can pose a significant challenge, as consuming copious amounts of booze is counterintuitive towards losing weight.
  • In this blog post, we will delve into the scientific reasons why alcohol can impede fat burning, examine how alcohol affects weight loss, and offer helpful tips on maintaining sobriety while pursuing weight loss goals.
  • Seeking advice from a health professional, such as a nutritionist or naturopath can give you a kick start you need to get on track.

Alcoholism, alcohol addiction, alcoholic, alcohol dependency, these are all terms that refer to an addiction to alcohol. 

When it comes to alcohol and weight loss, an addiction to alcohol can pose a significant challenge, as consuming copious amounts of booze is counterintuitive towards losing weight.

In this blog post, we will delve into the scientific reasons why alcohol can impede fat burning, examine how alcohol affects weight loss, and offer helpful tips on maintaining sobriety while pursuing weight loss goals.

How Alcohol Inhibits Fat Burning

Alcohol is metabolized differently than other nutrients, which means it is more likely to be stored as fat. Alcohol consumption disrupts the normal functioning of the liver, which is responsible for breaking down fat (Sayon-Orea et al., 2011). 

This disruption leads to the body focusing on metabolizing alcohol instead of burning fat, leading to a decrease in fat burning. In addition, alcohol consumption increases the production of cortisol, a hormone that can lead to increased fat storage in the abdominal area (Rachdaoui & Sarkar, 2017).

The Effect of Alcohol and Weight Loss

Alcohol contains empty calories, meaning it provides calories without any nutritional value. Consuming alcoholic drinks can lead to consuming more calories than necessary, leading to weight gain. 

Additionally, alcohol can lead to poor decision-making when it comes to food choices, leading to a higher intake of unhealthy, calorie-dense foods. Furthermore, alcohol consumption can interfere with sleep patterns, which can disrupt the body’s natural weight-loss processes (Traversy & Chaput, 2018).

Learn more on Supplements for Sleep: Some of the Best & Simple Natural Sleep Compounds to Get a Better Night’s Rest

Alcohol and Weight Loss: Tips and Supplements


Balancing alcohol and weight loss can be complex, especially when working towards maintaining sobriety. The journey requires a nuanced understanding of how alcohol impacts weight gain, often through empty calories and altered metabolism.

Adopting a sober lifestyle can be a significant step towards weight management. However, it’s essential to replace old habits with healthier ones, such as engaging in regular physical activity and mindful eating

Below are some specific tips on maintaining sobriety, as well as some targeted ones on weight loss. Combining these can act as a super simple method to support sobriety while meeting your weight loss goals.

3 Simple Tips for Maintaining Sobriety

  • Finding Healthy Replacements for Alcohol: During your weight loss journey, you can seek out low-calorie Non-Alcoholic Drinks, which could help manage cravings during early sobriety.
  • Find a Support Network: This could be a local gym, fitness community (online or offline) or even someone that aligns with your weight loss goals to keep you accountable.
  • Seek Professional Help: If you’re struggling with your diet, alcohol and weight loss can be a difficult hurdle. Seeking advice from a health professional, such as a nutritionist or naturopath can give you a kick start you need to get on track.
  • Embrace Active Living: Instead of structured exercise, find joy in natural movements like walking, gardening, or even cleaning. This approach is less daunting and integrates seamlessly into daily life, without all the stress.
  • Mindful Sugar Management: Acknowledge the tendency to lean towards sugar during sobriety and gradually reduce intake by exploring natural sweeteners or fruit-based desserts.

if you’re after more simple tips, head over to this article where I discuss 8 other ways to lose weight in sobriety without the whole dieting fuss.

Supplements for Weight Loss


When considering alcohol and weight loss, it’s important to explore different methods. For instance, I recommend HEAT by UM Sports, a supplement I personally use and endorse for its safe and effective fat-burning qualities and energy boost. During a fat-burning phase, combining this supplement with cardio or rigorous exercise can be beneficial.

If you’re interested in an alternative with no direct affiliation to me, Molotov by Zombie Labs is a powdered weight loss supplement I’ve tried and trust.

For those keen on trying HEAT, UM Sports offers it on their website. Remember to use the code CLARITY for a 10% discount. This approach integrates well with a lifestyle mindful of alcohol and weight loss.

Learn more about Fat Loss: Do Fat Burning Supplements Actually Work? 12 Fat Loss Ingredients to Loss Out For

Frequently Asked Questions

How does alcohol consumption affect weight loss goals?

Alcohol hinders weight loss due to it’s high empty calorie content and the way it’s metabolised. This often leads to increased fat storage and reduced ability to burn fat. Consuming alcohol also leads to poor dietary choices and poor sleep patterns, all collectively impacting weight loss.

Can you lose weight while still drinking alcohol?

It is possible for alcohol consumption not to completely derail weight loss, but it can slow progression. Excessive consumption disrupts appetite and exercise routine as well, creating another barrier.

How does alcohol contribute to fat storage in the body?

Alcohol generally disrupts normal liver function, which is a key in fat metabolism. This often leads to increased fat storage, especially in the abdominal area. When there is alcohol in the body, this is also prioritised over fat-burning.

The Takeaway

In conclusion, alcohol inhibits fat burning, leading to weight gain and a decrease in overall health. Maintaining sobriety during a weight loss journey is crucial for achieving weight loss goals and improving overall health.

Seeking professional help and building a strong support network can help make maintaining sobriety easier. Additionally, using healthy replacements for alcohol, such as UM Sports HEAT Thermogenic Energy Formula, can provide the energy needed for workouts without the negative effects of alcohol.

If you have any feedback regarding this article, reach out. Help Clarity reach more people and quit addiction by following us on Instagram, it’s also the perfect place to message us and ask questions!

References

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