Low-Calorie and Low-Carb Alcoholic Drinks

Alcohol isn’t something that everyone feels compelled to consume. Personally, I don’t like alcohol. I don’t like the taste and I don’t like how it makes me feel, so I don’t drink alcohol almost ever. But I know many people who do enjoy it in moderation. You may drink because you like the taste or because it signals that you are “unwinding” from the stress of the day or because it seems expected in social situations (or because you aren’t comfortable in social situations and drinking alcohol makes you feel more relaxed and outgoing).

I think it is helpful to understand what your intentions are when it comes to eating and drinking so that you can consider your options for meeting your needs and create some alcohol-free options.

When it comes to alcohol, there are some choices that are healthier than others.



In today’s newsletter, let’s discover alcoholic beverages that are low in calories and carbohydrates. But first, let’s define calories and carbohydrates and the difference between the two.

Cals and Carbs

Calorie refers to the measurement of the amount of energy we get from the food and drinks we consume, as well as the energy we use/expend to maintain life and do physical activities. We get calories from three macronutrients namely, fats, proteins, and carbohydrates–which are the building blocks of a balanced diet.

There are 4 calories in every gram of carbohydrate, also 4 calories per gram of protein, and 9 calories per gram of fats. Alcohol is not an essential nutrient, however, it does have a lot of calories–7 calories per gram.Carbohydrates, or carbs, are a macronutrient that includes sugars, starches, and fiber. Arguably, fiber and starch serve a purpose in that they have benefits to our health, whereas sugar does not.

If you are looking to release weight, improve your blood sugar, sleep better, or balance your energy levels, alcohol can certainly get in the way. Here are some examples: Fat metabolism is greatly reduced–up to 73%!–after 2 alcoholic beverages; alcohol stimulates your appetite, increases your stress hormone cortisol, reduces testosterone levels, and increases estrogen by up to 300%! (say hello to belly fat) for up to 24 hrs after drinking. None of that is good!

Drinking alcohol certainly creates some obstacles to good health, especially when we drink often, in excess, and certain types of alcoholic beverages are worse than others. Let’s check out the carb and calorie content of different liquors.

Spirits

Also known as hard alcohol, liquor, or distilled beverages, spirits are carb-free, but their calorie count depends on their alcohol content. Essentially, the more alcohol there is in the beverage, the more calories it contains. Examples of carb-free spirits are vodka, gin, tequila, whiskey, brandy, rum, and cognac.

Beer 

Beer is not a good option if you are on a low-carb diet or are trying to manage diabetes because it has a greater calorie and carb content compared to non-flavored hard alcohol and wine. It’s just like drinking liquid bread! Speaking of which, if you have leaky gut, gluten sensitivity or gluten intolerance, regular beer is definitely not a good option.

There is ultralight or low-carb beer (which contains only .5-3 grams of carbs per bottle or can) as well as gluten-free beer options (and some brands like Green’s Trailblazer are very low carb AND gluten-free). Here’s a list of some options.

Wine

The alcohol level of wine ranges between 5.5 to 14.5% with an 11.6% average alcohol by volume. In a 5-ounce serving of dry wine, there are about 3-6 grams of carbs and 110-130 calories. 

If you prefer to drink wine, stick to red or white wines only as they have fewer than 5 grams of net carb per serving. Dessert wines or sweet wines are high in carbs and calories. Also, be cautious of labels. Some brands can play with their labels to give consumers the perception that the beverage has low carb content.
Dry-farm and organic wines tend to be the healthiest options.

Mixed Drinks

Mixed drinks are flavored distilled drinks made from fruits, sugar, spices, or herbs. While their alcohol concentration is quite lower compared to that of unflavored liquor, they are loaded with carbohydrates and sugar!

You may want to create your own cocktails at home rather than buying pre-packaged mixers which are more likely to be high in sugar and calories. And instead of using high-calorie sweeteners or syrups to improve the taste of your drink, try using fresh herbs such as lavender, basil, mint, and rosemary. Add more ice, sparkling water, or seltzer (instead of soda or juice) to change the proportion of your beverage.

hope that you found this newsletter helpful!

It is my passion to work with people like you whose health symptoms are getting in the way of you living life fully and with a sense of freedom in your body. I can help you to regain your health so you can feel great and free to enjoy life fully. 

If you’re ready to discover where your best health has been hiding, I’d love to connect with you!

Apply for a complimentary Unstoppable Health Discovery Session. bit.ly/schedulinghealth (subject to availability).
 

Until next time, I’m wishing you unstoppable health!
~Rebecca

The Connection Between Gut Health and Longevity

In today’s newsletter, I just want to share with you something that has been in the longevity spotlight because of its research-backed claim that it can protect the body from age-related diseases as well as slow down the aging process.

Curious?

Urolithin A is a compound produced just inside your gut by your gut microbes when you eat foods containing ellagic acid. Ellagic acid is a naturally occurring polyphenol found in foods such as walnuts, raspberries (yellow and red), pomegranate, berries (black, blue, straw, and cloud), and teas. 

Here are some ways that your health benefits from Urolithin A (UA):

  • Mitochondrial health – Your mitochondria are called the powerhouses of the cell because these organelles inside the cell are responsible for extracting energy from food. As we age, the mitochondria become less functional, and so does the system that clears dysfunctional mitochondria. UA triggers mitophagy, which is the process of cleaning or recycling mitochondria that has become dysfunctional. The result is that you have less dysfunctional cells and more healthy, functioning cells. Winning!
  • Heart health – UA improves cardiac function in various ways: protecting against atherosclerosisreducing plasma lipid levels, and reducing inflammation in heart cells.
  • Brain health – Based on reports, UA exerts its anti-inflammatory properties in the brain. In the study involving mice as the subjects, UA imparted cognitive protection by protecting neurons from death and triggering neurogenesis (growth and development of new nerve tissue). Hence, UA is a promising therapeutic tool to possibly treat Alzheimer’s Disease.
  • Metabolic health — In obese animals, UA has been found to reduce harmful fats and increase insulin sensitivity, which as we know are factors for metabolic health and healthy body composition.
  • Muscle health –  By inducing mitophagy, UA improves muscle function as well. The presence of UA improves muscle fiber and enhances the strength and performance of skeletal muscles.

And check this out– In a study, UA increased the lifespan of worms by 45%!

Even though the studies so far have only involved animals, several human trials are underway. Urolithin A is indeed a very promising compound for achieving good health, quality of life, and hopefully a longer healthier life.

All the more reason to eat healthy produce and other foods that promote the health of your gut and gut bugs–without them, you can’t make UA!

It is my passion to work with people like you whose health symptoms are getting in the way of you living life fully and with a sense of freedom in your body. I can help you to regain your health so you can feel great and free to enjoy life fully. 

If you’re ready to discover where your best health has been hiding, I’d love to connect with you!

Apply for a complimentary Unstoppable Health Discovery Session. bit.ly/schedulinghealth (subject to availability).
 

Until next time, I’m wishing you unstoppable health!
~Rebecca

How to Lower Triglycerides Naturally

Have you been diagnosed with elevated triglycerides?

If so, today you’re going to learn about the connection between triglycerides and your gut.

You see, your gut health, metabolic health, and heart health are interconnected. In fact, every system of your body needs each other to function properly. In this newsletter, we’ll explore the fascinating connection of gut health and triglyceride levels.

First, let’s define triglycerides.

Triglycerides are a type of fat (lipid) in your body that is crucial to your existence. You can get fats from food, but your body also makes triglycerides from stored excess calories.

Triglycerides are essential but when the levels go above the normal range, it’s a symptom of your system being out of balance. 

You can check your triglycerides through a lipid profile or lipid panel, a common laboratory blood test using blood that measures the level of fats in your blood as well as the vehicles for delivering them. 

If you have had yours tested recently, you can compare your results with the following ranges do you fall:

  • Normal range – less than 150 mg/dL (milligrams per deciliter)
  • Mildly elevated – 150-199 mg/dL
  • Moderately elevated – 200-499 mg/dL
  • Severely elevated – 500mg/dl and above

High triglycerides increase your risk for serious diseases including heart problems, the hardening of blood vessels (atherosclerosis or arteriosclerosis), metabolic syndrome, and pancreatitis.

What causes high triglycerides?

To avoid these conditions, diet and lifestyle choices can make a difference. Here are some factors that can cause elevated triglycerides.

  • Consistently eating more calories than your body can use, (which also contributes to being overweight).
  • Eating an imbalanced diet, especially one that is rich in sugar and refined carbohydrates (bread, pasta, cereal, crackers, etc).
  • Smoking and drinking alcohol regularly.
  • Living a sedentary lifestyle.
  • Having health conditions such as diabetes and diseases affecting the thyroid, liver, and kidneys.
  • Taking medications including steroids, beta-blockers, hormone replacement, and immunosuppressants.

The gut-triglyceride connection

There are also some interesting and lesser talked about connections between your gut and your triglyceride levels. Specifically, there is substantial evidence that spore-based probiotics are effective in positively impacting triglyceride levels.

  • Certain probiotics can bind to fatty molecules in your digestive tract – blocking dietary triglycerides from being absorbed and released into the bloodstream.
  • Probiotics can influence liver function. Your liver is responsible for making and metabolizing triglycerides.
  • Some strains of probiotics produce compounds known as short-chain fatty acids (SCFA’s). SCFA’s modulate the production and metabolism of triglycerides.

So you can see how your gut health and the presence of beneficial bacteria is going to support you to have healthy triglyceride levels and good overall health.

7 tips for lowering triglycerides naturally

Based on the lifestyle markers I mentioned a moment ago, you can help bring down triglyceride levels naturally by:

  • Aiming for a normal body weight/healthy body composition (and healthy waist-to-hip ratio).
  • Eating a healthy, well-balanced diet (primarily fresh, whole foods with an emphasis on protein and fiber-rich produce) that promotes a healthy microbiome.
  • Eating fermented, probiotic-rich foods or taking a good probiotic to support a rich and diverse community of healthy bacteria.
  • Quitting smoking, and minimizing alcohol intake.
  • Living an active lifestyle (moving around throughout the day, aiming for 10k steps) and getting daily exercise (cardio and strength training).
  • Having enough sleep (7+ hrs/night).
  • Managing stress in healthy ways (breathing deeply, meditating, dancing, healthy hobbies, music, reading, talking constructively with people who are supportive, etc).

These are important lifestyle factors that when we commit to doing consistently can lower triglycerides and improve your overall health. 

Focusing on your gut health will always be an essential foundation to creating great health. Now you have more reasons to take care of our gut!

It is my passion to work with people like you whose health symptoms are getting in the way of you living life fully and with a sense of freedom in your body. I can help you to regain your health so you can feel great and free to enjoy life fully. 

If you’re ready to discover where your best health has been hiding, I’d love to connect with you!

Apply for a complimentary Unstoppable Health Discovery Session. bit.ly/schedulinghealth (subject to availability).
 

Until next time, I’m wishing you unstoppable health!
~Rebecca