Southwest Counseling Services: Trying to lose weight? Rethinking Drinking can help


Summer weight loss: it is a goal many people struggle with. Most start a diet and exercise plan. However, while you worry about your plate, you may be overlooking your glass. Alcohol can be a major source of empty calories. Recognizing this and moderating your intake can lead to substantial weight loss all by itself. 

The website Rethinking Drinking has a helpful tool for just that: the “Alcohol calorie counter.” It provides a list of popular drinks and their calorie contents, along with a calculator to add up your weekly consumption of alcohol calories. If you use the tool, be sure to consider the serving size beside the calorie content. Drinks prepared at home or in restaurants may actually be 2-5 times larger than the serving size listed.

How much weight can you really lose by just changing your drinking habits? “To lose 1 pound a week, you need to consume 500 fewer calories a day than your body burns,” the site explains. That may seem like a lot, but 500 calories is only about three 12 oz. beers or one 12 oz. Margarita. If you drink regularly, or heavily, cutting down your intake, or quitting completely for a while, could be all you need to lose a significant amount of weight.

If you drink and you want to lose some weight, check out the “Alcohol calorie counter” and put your alcohol calorie consumption into perspective. Changing your drinking habits may be just the trick you need to drop stubborn pounds.

While weight loss is one major benefit, rethinking your drinking can improve your life in several ways. If alcohol has caused any problems in your life, look at other parts of the Rethinking Drinking website to learn about all the impacts alcohol has on your health and to get tips on quitting or cutting down your drinking.

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