Top 7 Tips For Healthy Drinking
Surprise surprise! Drinking responsibly goes beyond not spilling it. And to be honest, if you were to be smart about it, drinking really doesn’t have to be unhealthy.Come Friday night, and most of us will either be heading out for a drink, or having a drink at home. The weekends are definitely reserved for drinking, and for some, weekdays are fair play too. I’ve done my share of heavy drinking and even now, I can drink almost anyone under the table.
But as I started growing older (stop speculating – I’m not that old), I realised I was getting increasingly bigger hangovers from increasingly smaller amounts. So I did my research, found out what all the doctors and medical experts had to say, and now I’m just going to vomit it out here for you (yeah, I did have a few drinks last night – and this is my hangover taking its revenge on all you sober people).
What happens when you drink alcohol?
Firstly, when you drink, it is absorbed into the bloodstream. Then it goes to your liver, where it is broken down. Alcohol can only be metabolised by the liver at the rate of about 30 ml per 90 minutes. Factors such as gender and body fat percentage affect this rate. Anything above this amount saturates your blood, till your liver is free enough to process it.
Also, the body can’t store alcohol, so it will burn alcohol before it burns calories. Which means that the calories will get stored as fat, rather than being used as fuel.
If you want to drink, drink responsibly, not only to save the people around you from your drunken singing and dancing, but also for your health.
Here are a few tips for drinking alcohol:
- Eat before you drink – If you’re full, you will drink less. Hopefully. It will also prevent you from snacking on those unhealthy chips, fries, and peanuts. Drinking on an empty stomach can also lower your blood sugar levels.
- Avoid salty snacks – Not only because they are high in calories, but also because eating them makes you thirsty, and will probably have you reaching for your nth beer.
- Don’t mix drinks – Mixing drinks will get you drunk faster, and you’ll end up drinking more. Why? Because you’ll be drunk. Pay attention!
- Pace yourself – Have a glass of water between drinks. It will keep you drinking slower, and won’t dehydrate you. Don’t like going slower than your friends? Pretend you’re having vodka!
- No sugary mixers – Cocktails, and alcohol with mixers such as juice or cola, have a whopping high calorie count. Plus, the sweet mixers usually make the drinks go down faster, so you’ll be drinking more. They will also dehydrate you faster.
- Avoid the hangover – If you don’t want a hangover, choose clear liquids like vodka rather than dark ones like whisky.
- Count your drinks – The recommended amount is one drink a day for women, and two for men. But if you are celebrating, you probably will drink more. Keep in mind though, that more than four drinks in one sitting for women and more than five for men is considered binge drinking, which comes with its own set of health issues.
If consumed moderately, alcohol may have benefits. Research shows that it promotes vascular health, and may lower the incidence of coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and mortality. Red wine contains a lot of antioxidants, which are beneficial for your health. But drinking more than the recommended amounts cancels all of those. So if you’re looking for any kind of health benefits from alcohol, drink responsibly.