BIG Nutrition: Is Alcohol Affecting Your Muscle Gains?


BIG Nutrition: Is Alcohol Affecting Your Muscle Gains?

Summertime means BBQs and BBQs often mean adult beverages. So with July 4 coming, the habit to build in week 8 (of 10) is moderating alcohol intake. Alcohol has a significant impact on your body including reducing:

  • Muscle building
  • Testosterone levels
  • Athletic performance
  • Muscle glycogen storage
  • Muscle recovery

And these are just some of the short-term effects of alcohol. Longer-term, consuming more alcohol than recommended can lead to reduced immunity and increased risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease. The impact of alcohol on athletic performance and on health is described more in these articles.

So, in the week and parties ahead try moderating alcohol intake by:

  • Measuring alcohol carefully
  • Adding 8 oz. of water between adult beverages
  • Including food in your day
  • Practicing a convincing “No thank you” for when you are offered another drink

The tips above are from the National Institutes of Health. In addition, you can also try lower alcohol cocktails, such as these.

Weeks 1-7 small habits to build and break in case you missed them:

Only 2 more weeks in this effort! Hang in there. You can do it!

Happy and healthful eating,

Donna G. Pertel, MEd, RD, LDN

If you have an idea for a nutrition habit that you recommend building, email me, at

[email protected]

1 Response

  1. Alcohol is not good at all and will never be good to one’s health. If you are working out (even if you;re not) you have to be disciplined enough not to even try drinking alcohol and smoking and sniffing and injecting drugs.