Does alcohol make you fat?
Alcohol is a concentrated form of energy and all unused energy we consume through food (or drinks), is stored as body fat.
The table hereunder gives the equivalent food (as a percentage of the food portion), for different alcoholic drinks that will contain the same amount of energy.
As an example:
Drinks are on the top row: Whisky is an unsweetened spirit at 43% abv and contains 1542 kJ of energy per 100ml and a typical drink size is 1 tot (30ml) which contains 331.50kJ of energy.
On the leftmost column we have a look at foods and non-alcoholic drinks. For example: fried potatoes. These have 963kJ of energy per 100g and a typical portion size is 180 grams (one medium sized potato) which contain 1733 kJ of energy.
From the table, where the whisky column and the fried potato row intersect, we can see that 30ml (1 tot) of whisky is equivalent to 19% of a fried potato portion of 180g. Or, in other words, we can swop one portion of potatoes for 5 tots of whisky in our diet. (Who wouldn’t?)
As another example, we can order two beers instead of one potato portion. What a bargain!
From the table it is also evident that when we mix a double brandy with Coke (classic) we end up with a drink containing 1320kJ of energy (660kJ + 2 x 332kJ). However, this is still less than 1 portion of fried potatoes or roughly the equivalent of 1 portion of pap (South African maize meal porridge) and definitely still worthwhile to consider!
So, yes, if you eat more than you should, additional alcohol will make you fat, but, what would you prefer: a double brandy or a teaspoon of peanut butter? (I dislike peanut butter anyway – it’s sticky and clings to my teeth)
For those struggling to maintain their weight, I trust the “my story” link hereunder will inspire you to also lose weight, eat less and be able to drink more!