I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not opposed to a glass of wine in the evening…or ten on the weekend. And while I’m enjoying my late night red or my afternoon cider, I rarely stop, mid-middy, to consider what it’s doing to my waistline (also because I would never order a middy…who invented them?!).
Alcohol is fattening but we often drink it like it’s water, and with no nutrition labelling, it’s easy to forget just how bad it is – or perhaps you didn’t know, so let me enlighten you.
A standard glass of wine contains approximately 130 calories. In layman’s terms, this is the equivalent to one and a half heaped tablespoons of peanut butter, two and a half oreos or a bounty chocolate bar…and this is a ‘standard glass’. The wine that gets poured for you at fancy restaurants (and the glass you’d pour yourself) is closer to 230 calories, the same as a small serving of McDonalds fries.
So next time you sit down for dinner, topping up your humble glass of vino, ask yourself, would you like fries with that?
3 reasons why alcohol is extra fattening:
1. Alcohol contains 7 calories per gram (which is a lot!)
This is almost the same as pure fat (9 calories per gram) and almost double that of carbohydrates and protein (4 calories per gram).
2. Alcohol has almost no nutritional value
Calories in alcohol are called ‘empty calories’ because they have next to no nutritional value. Although most alcoholic beverages contain vitamins and minerals, it’s usually not enough to make a beneficial contribution to our diet.
3. The more you drink, the less fat you burn
Drinking alcohol actually reduces the amount of fat your body burns. Unlike carbohydrates, protein, fat and nutrients, our body is unable to store alcohol. When we have a drink, our system prioritises getting rid of it and in doing so, interrupts all other processes that should be taking place including burning fat and absorbing nutrients.
But seriously, how bad is it?