Alcohol and muscle building does not mix. I think if you are serious about your health and muscle building development and you want the maximum possible benefit from your weight training program, then you should drink alcoholic in moderation or NOT at all.
The Effects of Alcohol on Muscle Building
Moderation is usually considered as having 1-2 drinks a day. If the aim is building muscle, it likely won’t do much harm, and may even have some health benefits such as increased HDL. I know everyone has heard that drinking wine is good for you and that is true to a certain degree. The actual truth can be found in the grape skin. It has an enzyme that is good for you and you can get it from grape juice.
However, excessive alcohol consumption will undoubtedly compromise the results you’ll get from your weight gain diet and training program. The truth is that you should not want to consume these types of alcoholic drinks because you are in constant training of some type or another. Hangovers are a result of dehydration. Alcohol dehydrates the body since it draws water from the cells and increases water loss through the kidneys.
Dehydration cannot only hinder muscle growth, but it can be dangerous also. For example running requires water within the body to keep you cool. If lack the proper hydration you are risking over heating such as heat exhaustion, muscle cramps, or heat stroke.
Alcohol consumption hinders your body from absorption of the proper nutrients for muscle growth during weight lifting. Remember we are dieting to have their proper fuel for our type of training. We don’t want to block the vital nutritional gains. We want to enhance them.
Alcohol suppresses your body’s ability to burn fat. The main reason is the oxidation of the alcohol takes top priority over the oxidation of other macronutrients such as carbohydrates, protein, and fats. In other words, while your body is busy metabolizing alcohol it cannot properly utilize the fats, carbohydrate and protein. As long as the alcohol is in your system, your body will simply convert most of the calories you normally eat into body fat.
Alcohol also decreases natural production of testosterone in the body, which is one of the main anabolic muscle building hormones.
Due to alcohol beverages being calorie dense, some people may think it’s a good way to gain weight. However, due to the lack of nutritional value it provides and interference that excessive amounts of drinking can have on your schedule, it just isn’t worth it if you are serious about seeing good results.