HEALTHY TIPS FOR BEFORE/DURING/AFTER
I FREQUENTLY GET ASKED IF I DRINK ALCOHOL AND IF I MAKE CLIENTS CUT IT OUT, AND IF YOU KNOW ME, YOU KNOW THAT ANSWER!
If alcohol is something you've decided can be a healthy part of your life, I've compiled some clear information on how it affects the body and how to take care of and replenish your body before, during, and after in this 3-part series.
PART 1: HOW ALCOHOL AFFECTS OUR BODY
- First, know your limits and set a boundary for yourself before your first drink.
- Pace yourself and aim to savor and sip rather than gulp and guzzle.
- Eat a well-balanced meal beforehand to slow down the absorption into the bloodstream and help stabilize blood sugar.
- Go simple. My favorites: red wine, sparkling rosé, prosecco, blanco tequila with fresh lime juice and chili salt.
- Avoid sugary mixes, concentrates, juices, and mixing various types of alcohol.
- If you do choose to enjoy a more sugary cocktail (because...live a little...), follow up with extra water and move on to a low sugar drink after one.
- Hydration: Alcohol is dehydrating so aim to drink 1 glass of water for every drink consumed and sip on water with your drink to avoid drinking down your delicious cocktail all too quickly and reaching for snacks when you aren’t actually hungry.
- Eat a Balanced Meal: If you show up to happy hour or dinner with an empty belly, choose a healthier option with protein, complex carbohydrates like a grain or starchy vegetable, and a healthy fat such as olives.
- Avoid eating heavy carbohydrates with alcohol to avoid a blood sugar spike (especially before bed).
- Avoid consuming alcohol too close to bedtime to help improve the quality of your sleep.
- If you’re feeling hungry before bed, reach for a healthy fat like olives, cashew or sunflower seed butter, raw nuts, or half an avocado with rice vinegar and flaky salt to help stabilize blood sugar.
- Drink a full glass of water before you head to bed along with a multivitamin that has a good dose of vitamins A, B, C, Zinc, and Magnesium.
- Supplement with milk thistle (silymarin) – an herbal supplement that helps protect the liver, reduce inflammation, and metabolize toxins (aka alcohol) while helping balance blood sugar.
- The Morning After: drink 12-16 oz of water with juice of one fresh lemon before anything else hits your system to stimulate the digestive system, support the liver and give your body a dose of vitamin C.
- Follow the lemon water with healthy fats and fiber, a good dose of greens (perhaps a juice of all greens and lemon) or 1 tsp of liquid chlorophyll (since I know you won’t be craving a gigantic salad) before your coffee.
- (In case you forgot last night..) Nourish your liver, help remove toxins, and replenish vitamins A, B, C, E and Magnesium with a Multivitamin.
- Take a Probiotic.
- GET A WORKOUT IN AND SWEAT! (non-negotiable)
LOOKING TO CUT BACK? HERE ARE A FEW TIPS:
- Choose a few nights a week that are Alcohol-Free
- Choose drinks with a lower percentage of alcohol
- Keep track of how much you drink in one sitting and per week
- Drink a glass of water before and after an alcoholic beverage
You can still enjoy moderate alcohol consumption and the social aspects of drinking and stay on track with your health and fitness goals. Determine how important your health goals are to you, consider your personal bio-individuality and genetics, pay close attention to your motivations behind drinking, and follow my healthy tips for before, during, and after.
And make sure that whatever you choose to drink, it’s totally worth it! Because life is too short for it not to be enjoyed and a good cab tastes extra delicious with a healthy meal.
IMPORTANT: Make sure the drinks you are consuming are enjoyable rather than a form of therapy, numbing, social anxiety, peer pressure, or because you believe it’s beneficial to your health and well-being. Our relationship to alcohol, knowing our personal limits and how to maintain a healthy balance is extremely important.
Do you have a question regarding social drinking and your fitness goals? Do you have any words of advice for others trying to navigate creating a healthy lifestyle? Ask or share below or start the conversation on social using #runningwithforks.