In America drinking beer should be a sport, it’s enjoyed that much, and for a good reason. It’s always nice to get home from a long day of work a crack open a cold one to unwind from the day. Or go out on the weekend and drink beers with your friends, what could be more fun on a Saturday night than that?
Drinking some beer a few nights a week won’t hurt you at all, but when you start drinking beer like it’s your job, your body is going to begin to change. Drinking too much beer turns into eating out and ordering late-night pizzas which then turns your nice toned stomach into the dreaded beer belly gut.
Check out some of these nutrition facts and health tips and tricks for you to still enjoy your favorite brews while keeping your toned body.
Beer’s Nutrition Facts
Everybody knows that drinking any type of alcohol will come with the price of high calories, carbs, and sugars; but just how much are we talking? In the U.S., brewers aren’t required to share their beer’s caloric content on the label, which leaves people grabbing one after another without even thinking.
Lagers, pilsners, and some amber ales have the lowest calories at around 100-150 per 12-ounce glass and usually have under 10 grams of carbs. These are beers like Bud Light, Coors Light, PBR, Michelob Ultra, etc.
The ever so famous imperial India pale ales; IPAs, will ring in around 200-400 calories, and when the calories go up so do the carbs. And to top it off any sort of barrel-aged beer will blow your mind with how many calories are in it. Just one six-ounce pour of the Bruery’s barrel-aged stout contains about 500 calories. That’s as much as a McDonald’s Big Mac.
A little tip if you don’t know how many calories are in your favorite beer, look at the ABV, alcohol by volume, of the beer. If it’s lower, it most likely means there are fewer calories. As the ABV goes up, that’s when you start to get higher in the calories.
Drink Your Beer Mindfully
Now that you know how to measure how many calories are in beer, it’s easier to manage your intake as your drinking. However, drinking one or two beers here and there is not the sole reason you’re getting that infamous beer belly.
Beer alone is not going to make you fat, just like one cheat meal isn’t going to blow your whole diet. If you’re living an active and healthy lifestyle while sipping on some beers here and there, your body won’t blow up. But it’s when you start to drink a six-pack in one night and order an XL pizza on the regular that your body will begin to show it.
Also, deciding to skip a meal and drink your calories instead, actually isn’t going to help you avoid weight gain. According to the MayoClinic, when you drink without eating your liver fails to release stored glucose in the bloodstream and causes low blood sugar. When you have low blood sugar, your body craves sweets and carbs because it’s trying to regulate itself.
So basically you’re skipping on one healthy meal, drinking multiple beers and then later demolishing greasy, unhealthy foods which completely defeats what you were trying to do. Eat something light before you drink to avoid those drunk late night cravings.
Recently the beer community is starting to incorporate healthy living while enjoying your favorite brews. Allentown, Pennsylvania has started their first ever Earn Your Beer Series and have had three races so far. Their first race was the Brew to Brew 10K+ in April 2018, followed by a 5K in May and another in June.
Their goal is to encourage active lifestyles while still drinking beer. Each race starts at one of their local breweries and ends with a fun party filled with tons of… you guessed it… beer. It’s honestly the best of both worlds.
Living an active and healthy lifestyle shouldn’t be boring and filled with tasteless foods and drinks. It’s all about moderation, and when you enjoy the good stuff every once in a while, it not only keeps your body looking and feeling good but makes you appreciate it that much more.