This is one of the most popular questions I get asked at this time of year so I thought I would write a blog post on my stance with alcohol.
Alcohol is a neurotoxin and has a lot of negative effects on the brain not to mention the liver. Heavy drinking has also been associated with cardiovascular disease including increased risk of stroke and elevated blood pressure. So…when we talk about alcohol it is meant to be enjoyed in moderation.
We also hear a lot of conflicting information on whether alcohol is beneficial or not?
A recent review in the Journal of Internal Medicine, intensively explored the literature to see if alcohol was in fact beneficial to health. Their findings showed that light alcohol consumption less than 3 drinks per day was associated with a reduction in coronary artery disease, stroke and heart failure. It was shown that light alcohol consumption raised HDL or good cholesterol and reduced the stickiness of platelets in the blood. The authors also revealed a reduction in type II diabetic risk as well as a reduction in LDL oxidation in mild alcohol consumers.
A study published in the journal, Frontiers in Nutrition found that there was a 4 fold decrease in Alzheimer’s disease in those that consumed light amounts of red wine compared to those that didn’t drink at all.
So the literature seems clear that there is a benefit to light alcohol consumption, and it seems that red wine is by far your best option. This has to do with the high antioxidant content in the wine, as well as the fact that it doesn’t spike insulin.
If you are not a red wine drinker – here are some other summer options that will be kind to your waistline!
SoCIAL LITE –
A refreshing vodka drink from the LCBO – only 80 calories and flavoured with natural flavours.
Grapefruit, Lime Ginger, Cucumber Mint and Pineapple Mango
Moscow Mules – Typically loaded with sugar, but try this low sugar option
Mojito – My personal favourite on a Hot Summer Afternoon
Low Carb Beer
Typical Light Beers have around 5 grams of net carbs which is still low, but if you want to get even lower brands like Canadian 67, Cracked Canoe and Sleeman Clear will offer 2-3g of net carbs
Purchase brut or even better brut natural which has the lowest sugar content, much lower than the champagnes labelled extra dry. Depending on the brand these beverages can contain 0.5-1.5g of carbs per servings. They are a great refreshing summer drink.
Hope this helps!!
Enjoy the season