Alcohol


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Hey guys!

 

I just finished my first Whole30 yesterday and it feels amazing!  I plan on staying on this diet for a long time, however the only thing I feel like I really don't want to give up is drinking socially.  I'm still young and I really enjoy some drinks here and there.  I don't want to mess anything up health-wise though.  Although, I did find that I love not ever having hangovers or nights of pigging out on junk.  I also love leaving a bar feeling hydrated from water rather than buzzed on beer, however, I am not sure that I'm ready to break up with alcohol yet.  Any advice?  Thoughts on the health effects?  I know nothing good ever comes out of drinking and maybe I should just give it up.  I just kind of miss it and I know that I will still want to drink socially at some point.  Also, I feel like I will still stick to the Whole30 guidelines, even on those nights that I need a late night meal after drinking. I would love a celebratory drink for finishing my Whole30!  Your feedback is appreciated!

 

-Mandy

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My suggestion would be to get into high-end scotch/bourbon (or cognac or other fancy sipping liquors) if you want a go-to for social drinking.  It's meant to be drunk on its own (so no crappy mixers or anything), is distilled and doesn't contain a bunch of extra stuff (tannins, sulfites, etc) that can mess up your system, you can drink it very slowly and savor each sip, you don't need to drink very much, and it's super classy (kind of a "man drink", but ladies who drink scotch and such are awesome - I know because I am one ;) ).  Besides, with it being expensive, you tend to buy/drink less of it.

 

In my experience, nice whiskey is the least disruptive on my system and least likely to leave me with a hangover, even if I drink too much.  The worst drinks for giving me hangovers, on the other hand, are sugary mixed drinks and some wines (heavy reds and overly sweet whites).  I swear it's the alcohol + sugar combo that does you in, which is why I avoid it like the plague.

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If you have any reactions to grains, sugar and dairy during your Reintroductions (or other ingredients), be aware these can be in alcohols too (some wine now contains dairy).

 

I found the hangover feeling I associated with alcohol was actually alcohol made from gluten grains, so now I never drink these.

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Dairy in wine??? What is this nonsense? I thought it was just milk stouts, White Russians, Bailey's, and Dothraki fermented mare's milk you had to worry about in regards to dairy in your booze.

Mandy, did you uncover any particular sensitives while doing Whole30? A grain/gluten sensitivity might knock out the whiskey options, but you could still look into cognac and brandy, potato vodka, and finer tequilas and rums.

Since you're in PA, you might be able to find Boyd & Blair potato vodka. It is fantastic vodka - blows Grey Goose and the like out of the water and is the only vodka I've had that I can sip on its own. It'd make a fine martini (one of the few mixed drinks I'd bother with).

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I'm a wine drinker, and my rule is no more than one glass for the whole evening. I make it a game to sip and savor and make that one glass last all night, drinking lots of water as well as eating something. No hangover for me, but I absolutely have to stick to one glass. I've had wine twice now since finishing my last round of W30.

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Wow, thank you for all of the suggestions!  I love the idea of slow sipping a whiskey or scotch, or even a glass of wine.  I just wonder if there could be any alcohol out there that is actually whole3o approved?  No grains, sugars except from fruit or dairy...hmm.  I must admit that I will miss drinking beer though.  I think alcohol will just be a cheat for me and I will try to keep it classy and healthy as best I can.  I love the idea of trying potato vodka and tequila seems to be a great option too.    I usually stay away from mixers and sugar in my drinks.  I never drink soda or anything like that.  I don't think I am going to do the reintroductions until I feel the need to go off of this diet, but I am not sensitive to gluten.  I might be slightly sensitive to dairy though.  Today is Day 31 for me and I don't wanna stop!  So my drinks of choice will be Whiskey, Bourbon, Scotch, Tequila, Wine and sometimes beer (in that order).  Are there any alcohols that are Whole30 compliant?   Would tequila be?

 

-Mandy

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There are not any alcohols that are whole30 compliant because it is never an item that makes you healthier. Your body does not NEED it, there are no nutrients in it that you can't get elsewhere and it has many downsides.  The point of doing the whole30 as you know is to decide for yourself if it's worth it to you but no, there isn't and will never be a Whole30 approved alcohol.

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Dairy in wine??? What is this nonsense? I thought it was just milk stouts, White Russians, Bailey's, and Dothraki fermented mare's milk you had to worry about in regards to dairy in your booze.

 

Off-topic, but thank you, Dodo Bird, for the A Song of Ice and Fire reference. It may have made me actually laugh out loud :)

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Kombucha is a fermented tea beverage with a faint hint of alcohol because it is, well, fermented. It is Whole30 compliant if it has 4 grams of sugar or less (sugar is required to make it, but you don't want one that has more sugar than that).

If you have been completely off alcohol for a while, you may notice the alcohol in it, but don't try asking for a glass in a bar. :) Still, it could be something you BYOB and pour it into a wine glass to drink.

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If you decide to conclude your official Whole30 run (since you've made it 30 days), once you've gone through reintroduction, you can make yourself a set of post-Whole30 clean eating parameters that work for you and your lifestyle.  And if social drinking is an important part of your lifestyle, make yourself some rules and stick to them, like only allowing yourself one whiskey on the rocks/glass of wine while out with friends and not keeping beer at home.  It won't be official Whole30 (like others have said, no alcohol is compliant), but you'll have some good boundaries for yourself and stay way from stuff that makes you feel not good.

 

A note on whiskey:  Scotch and bourbon are just types of whiskey.  Very distinct, though.

 

 

Off-topic, but thank you, Dodo Bird, for the A Song of Ice and Fire reference. It may have made me actually laugh out loud :)

Hehehe...

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If you decide to conclude your official Whole30 run (since you've made it 30 days), once you've gone through reintroduction, you can make yourself a set of post-Whole30 clean eating parameters that work for you and your lifestyle.  

 

On the rocks, neat or straight-up.  You rock.  

 

 

I'm rolling around on the floor and barking like dog just thinking about it.  I have to stick with Hooch Booch.  

 

Cheers.  

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  • 4 weeks later...

Another option is you CAN actually go out and drink with your friends without drinking alcohol. I like the "Mediterranean Fizz" drink described by my personal goddess Mel Joulwan in this article: http://meljoulwan.com/2011/07/14/paleo-social-butterfly/. It may not make you a better dancer like actual alcohol, but your bar tab will be really cheap!

 

I also like the suggestion of just sipping on an alcoholic drink very slowly throughout the night - might be easier to do with by ordering a glass of water on the side. (I think I will try this for myself next time I go out.) 

 

Good luck!

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My limit, after breastfeeding, was two drinks, maximum. That was 9 years ago, and it's still my limit. I enjoy alcohol - mixed drinks, good red wine or a nice chocolate stout, but go for quality over quantity. Go for moderation, and limit your exposure. None of your friends will be upset if you go out for drinks with them and you limit yourself to 1 or 2 drinks (with a seltzer and lemon in between). Having a hangover is awful, and that was something I never wanted to deal with as a parent. My time is too valuable to waste it feeling miserable!

 

Alcohol was one of the first things I reintroduced after my W30, and I found no ill effects. I don't drink that often, either, so it's not a big issue for me. Everyone has good suggestions, so I hope all this helps! Be good and be well! :)

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Mandy,

 

I have completed 3 Whole30s in the past nine months.  What I have learned is to re-introduce alcohol the same way you should have done with other non-Whole30 foods.  See which ones have which reactions.  

 

I personally have found out, unfortunately, that beer is not my friend.  And, I love beer!  I drank it all of the time!!! Now, I know that beer will make me feel lethargic (not in a drunk way) and bloated.  My stomach just hates it. I've even tried "gluten-free" beers, and I still have a negative reaction.  

 

But, I can drink scotch, some vodkas, and red wine without a problem.  So, I just do that.  I enjoy about a drink or two a day.  This isn't a Whole30 thing to do, but that's what I do when not doing a Whole30 challenge. 

 

You just need to find out what works for you.

 

Before other advanced members jump all over this...I am aware of the negative consequences of consuming a toxin, how it get's processed before food does, and that it is an unhealthy choice.  

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I completed an extended Whole30 on May 31st (started April 11 but had to restart)  and was so amazed after about a week to 10 days I didn't miss red wine!  Alas!  This Thursday, I bought 2 nice bottles of a Pinot Noir and a Merlot!  I had 3 glasses to celebrate while I finished season 3 of Maron on Netflix.  Wine caused an unpleasant background headache all day Friday.  DUH.  I didn't drink even enough water, so I felt it.  Friday night, I had 1 1/2 glasses and am okay.  I finally weighed myself today for the first time.  I lost 10 lbs!  The NSV's were what totally amazed me, but I weighed with curious trepidation anyway.  Will remain eating the same Whole30 food because it is good for you!  Believe it! 

 

I added sugar to my very strong coffee since the 1st and quickly saw I add too much.  I broke down Friday and bought powdered stevia (uck) because I don't want to add sugar anymore to coffee--started that today.  I introduced popcorn popped in coconut oil because I love the salty snack--no side effects.   Not sure if I will buy much wine.  I am really grateful for the Whole30 framework which restored my health and has so many benefits--no achy joints, body metabolizing fat for energy and not sugar, clothes fitting so much better, skin better, and mindfulness. 

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On second thought, I'd rather not resume drinking red wine...I poured the remainder of my 2nd bottle down the drain.  I bought 2 wine bottles after completing my Whole30.  I don't want to sugar my coffee, either.  Both are bad habits, and I didn't feel well this Saturday.  It's not worth the headache.

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