Alcohol and muscle

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    Jun 07, 2012 11:17 AM GMT
    I am going to be really disciplined for this last month before Provincetown. My diet is going to be tight, intense training and cardio, and NO ALCOHO!!!

    I have heard too many beasts say that alcohol really tears up muscle and adds body fat. Has it matter for you? I know I probably won't get much benefit from only a month, but to be honest I am excited to try and take it to the next level!

    Any stories about the benefits of not drinking alcohol and muscle mass?
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    Jun 07, 2012 1:09 PM GMT
    MuscleBadger saidAny stories about the benefits of not drinking alcohol and muscle mass?
    Yeah. I'm much leaner when I lay down the bottle for a few weeks. Too bad it's so boring here that I just can't do that at right now. icon_lol.gif
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Jun 07, 2012 1:13 PM GMT
    Never really heard much about either, honestly. All I know is, if you are serious about reaching your goals, probably the less distraction the better. Kudos for all the hard work!
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    Jun 07, 2012 1:33 PM GMT
    GHB/GBL/G4H

    that is all.
  • SomeSiciliano...

    Posts: 543

    Jun 07, 2012 1:36 PM GMT
    This sums it up quite well. In my experience, it is all on point.

    http://www.askmen.com/sports/bodybuilding_200/218_fitness_tip.html
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    Jun 07, 2012 1:37 PM GMT
    I haven't heard about drinking alcohol "tearing up muscle and adding body fat"...
    But a few years ago I was reading an article on the adverse effects of drinking alcohol immediately after training, where they said that it inhibited muscle growth.

    Drinking alcohol after training inhibits muscle growth

    Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport
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    Jun 07, 2012 1:37 PM GMT
    On the wagon? Yup, its the way to go - muscle recovery is faster and your liver can work on other things in the meantime...

    I only have 1 alcoholic drink a week on average - a vodka and mineral water.. its about the lowest carb I could think of ;)-

    Alcohol Item (serving size) Carbs (g)
    Beer, regular (12 fl oz) = 13g
    Beer, light (12 fl oz) = 4.5g
    Wine, red (3.5 fl oz) =1.75g
    Wine, rose (3.5 fl oz) =1.5
    Wine, white (3.5 fl oz) =1g
    Cider, dry (1 pint) =15g
    Gin, Rum, Vodka, Whisky (1 fl oz) =0g
    Sherry (2 fl oz) =3g
    Port (2 fl oz) =6g
    Guinness (1/2 pint) =4g


    Robert C. Atkins –– the Granddaddy of them all:

    "Here's the problem with all alcoholic beverages, and the reason I recommend refraining from alcohol consumption on the diet. Alcohol, whenever taken in, is the first fuel to burn. While that's going on, your body will not burn fat. This does not stop the weight loss, it simply postpones it, since the alcohol does not store as glycogen, you immediately go back into ketosis/lipolysis after the alcohol is used up.

    If you must drink alcohol, wine is an acceptable addition to levels beyond the Induction diet. If wine does not suit your taste, straight liquor such as scotch, rye, vodka, and gin would be appropriate, as long as the mixer is sugarless; this means no juice, tonic water; or non-diet soda. Seltzer and diet soda are appropriate."


    http://www.shapefit.com/alcohol-calories.html
  • Neferti

    Posts: 55

    Jun 07, 2012 4:42 PM GMT
    It's one of the great myths of fitness that alcohol is bad. The research just doesn't support it though:

    http://www.leangains.com/2010/07/truth-about-alcohol-fat-loss-and-muscle.html
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    Jun 07, 2012 4:45 PM GMT
    If I want to drop body fat, cutting out all alcohol is one of the most sure fire ways for me to do it.
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    Jun 07, 2012 5:06 PM GMT
    Cutting out alcohol ???!!!!

    Are you MAD ??? !!!!!

    tumblr_lmphuxWb1L1qc268m.gif

    I'd rather have a 'flab pack' and be able to still drink the sweet nectar any day.
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    Jun 07, 2012 5:12 PM GMT
    whateveryo saidCutting out alcohol ???!!!!

    Are you MAD ??? !!!!!

    tumblr_lmphuxWb1L1qc268m.gif

    I'd rather have a 'flab pack' and be able to still drink the sweet nectar any day.


    Boo, here's a Xanax... its all good....

    Read my post: I am doing this to get ready for Provincetown... once there oh HELL yeah I will be having a drunk/sex fest with all of that furry muscle. Make no mistake!! This is a "get a rocking body" endeavour, not a permanent situation.

    Breathe deeply.... here's some Pinot Grigio...
  • jim_sf

    Posts: 2094

    Jun 07, 2012 5:15 PM GMT
    I'd be more concerned about what else is in that drink than about the alcohol itself. Beer contains a lot of sugars and starches that I'd have to make up for somehow, but a distilled spirit like gin, vodka, or whisk(e)y doesn't have very much sugar left. Wines vary in their sugar levels. And as for mixers, there's a big caloric difference between (say) club soda and (say) mango nectar.

    EDIT: so to finish my thought:
    *One glass of dry red wine with your steak? Yes, by all means.
    *Epic multi-round beer-pong tournament against college rugby players? Um, you might want to avoid that.
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    Jun 07, 2012 8:21 PM GMT
    sc69 saidOn the wagon? Yup, its the way to go - muscle recovery is faster and your liver can work on other things in the meantime...

    I only have 1 alcoholic drink a week on average - a vodka and mineral water.. its about the lowest carb I could think of ;)-

    Alcohol Item (serving size) Carbs (g)
    Beer, regular (12 fl oz) = 13g
    Beer, light (12 fl oz) = 4.5g
    Wine, red (3.5 fl oz) =1.75g
    Wine, rose (3.5 fl oz) =1.5
    Wine, white (3.5 fl oz) =1g
    Cider, dry (1 pint) =15g
    Gin, Rum, Vodka, Whisky (1 fl oz) =0g
    Sherry (2 fl oz) =3g
    Port (2 fl oz) =6g
    Guinness (1/2 pint) =4g


    http://www.shapefit.com/alcohol-calories.html


    But there are still calories in liquor.

    Alcohol vs Carbs
    Although alcohol is sometimes lumped in with carbohydrates, our bodies treat alcohol and carbohydrate differently. From a pure calorie standpoint, a gram of alcohol provides the body with 7 calories per gram, whereas carbohydrates have 4 calories per gram. Moreover, the body uses the calories from alcohol first for energy, before carbohydrate or fat.

    http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=893
  • Montague

    Posts: 5205

    Jun 07, 2012 8:24 PM GMT
    Send me your booze.
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    Jun 07, 2012 8:26 PM GMT
    I got drunk after doing legs once. It was not good- my performance was meh the next day. Here's why: alcohol is 7 calories per gram (compared to 9 grams for fat and 4 grams for protein and carbs apiece) and it tends to mess with protein synthesis.
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    Jun 07, 2012 8:34 PM GMT
    Alcohol adds fat since it contains calories. Small amounts is OK. It's a nerve depressant which affects how your nerve cells communicate by slowing them down. Just make sure it's in small amounts and a manly drink, that isn't made from hops. Hops have phytop-estrogens which is just estrogen to people. So you don't want to ingest tons of estrogen unless you're a chick.
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    Jun 07, 2012 8:38 PM GMT
    You said 'no alcohol' how much we're you drinking before and how often...1-2 beers a day won't effect your gains much, I will have 1-2 every few days after a hard days work and that's it sometimes I will go a week and not have any and maybe once every 2 weeks I will hit a club on saturday night or party and have 7..lol I have heard that too much alcohol can raise estrongen levels in males...? but I'm not sure what they mean by 'too much'...I never get too the point of having a hangover either, not these days anyways...icon_smile.gif
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    Jun 07, 2012 8:42 PM GMT
    Alcohol inhibits protein synthesis.
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    Jun 07, 2012 8:51 PM GMT
    ECnAZ saidAlcohol inhibits protein synthesis.


    Heard this too...but they never say how much, its probably different for everyone...I know for what I drink it hasn't affected my growth, or maybe it has...? but I don't mind sacrificing a little to have a some fun;)
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    Jun 07, 2012 8:59 PM GMT
    MuscleBadger said
    whateveryo saidCutting out alcohol ???!!!!

    Are you MAD ??? !!!!!

    tumblr_lmphuxWb1L1qc268m.gif

    I'd rather have a 'flab pack' and be able to still drink the sweet nectar any day.


    Boo, here's a Xanax... its all good....

    Read my post: I am doing this to get ready for Provincetown... once there oh HELL yeah I will be having a drunk/sex fest with all of that furry muscle. Make no mistake!! This is a "get a rocking body" endeavour, not a permanent situation.

    Breathe deeply.... here's some Pinot Grigio...


    Man- I said the same thing about Texas last spring break. I came and left a virgin.
  • jim_sf

    Posts: 2094

    Jun 07, 2012 9:06 PM GMT
    Gym_bull saidAlcohol adds fat since it contains calories. Small amounts is OK. It's a nerve depressant which affects how your nerve cells communicate by slowing them down. Just make sure it's in small amounts and a manly drink, that isn't made from hops. Hops have phytop-estrogens which is just estrogen to people. So you don't want to ingest tons of estrogen unless you're a chick.


    While hops themselves contain phytoestrogens, those phytoestrogens do not affect the beer itself (http://pubs.acs.org/doi/full/10.1021/np049783i). And a 2010 meta-analysis of placebo-controlled studies found that soy-based phytoestrogens did not significantly affect testosterone production in men (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0015028209009662); soy and soy products have a higher concentration of phytoestrogens than hops, so if soy doesn't significantly affect testosterone, then hops won't either. Finally, a study in 2005 found evidence that hops extract could promote weight loss, in addition to its established uses as a mild sedative (http://www.mensfitness.com/nutrition/supplements/supplement-guide-hops-extract, looking for a better link).

    So, if you're gearing up for P-town, don't skip beer because of the hops - skip it because of all the extra unfermented starches and sugars from the barley.
  • jim_sf

    Posts: 2094

    Jun 07, 2012 9:17 PM GMT
    SteelCityMuscle said
    ECnAZ saidAlcohol inhibits protein synthesis.


    Heard this too...but they never say how much, its probably different for everyone...I know for what I drink it hasn't affected my growth, or maybe it has...? but I don't mind sacrificing a little to have a some fun;)


    Found something:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11331201

    It appears that protein synthesis is diminished more in fast-twitch muscle than in slow-twitch muscle. That diminution goes away as the subject sobers up. Still research to be done, though.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 07, 2012 9:37 PM GMT
    Alcohol has calories, therefore, has some mass-maintaining benefit.
    --my simplified justification for insisting on drinking
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    Jun 07, 2012 9:55 PM GMT
    As someone who practically never drinks, I couldn't say for sure, but it stands to reason that all of those extra calories with zero nutritional benefit are counterproductive if you're trying to keep your macronutrients in balance.Not to mention studies that show that it hinders protein synthesis. I basically drink maybe once a month or so at most. There are plenty of other ways to have fun, guys.
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    Jun 07, 2012 10:18 PM GMT
    MuchMoreThanMuscle saidI was going to report that alcohol consumption negatively impacts testosterone levels. But according to Martin's Leangains.com site it's practically negligible.

    I say do your own experiment and see how you respond. Maybe you'll see a difference in a month's time and then you can omit alcohol on occasion in order to tighten up when you want.


    That is what I am doing. After all of these years of training myself and others, I have learned that your diet, just like your training regmine, is very personaliized and individual. You have to experiment with what you do.

    I have met a ton of guys with a lot of muscle who drink regularly. I know some other guys who swear their gains went through the roof when they quit. I really wanted to see if anyone on here had noticed any differences or if they had individual stories to tell. I am going to see about how a month changes my mass and bodyfat... and hopefully it will make me be all sexy for the beach!!