Can You Drink Alcohol On The Keto Diet?

Unlike veganism or dairy-free diets, where a quick scan of the ingredient list can usually tell what's okay to eat and what isn't, the keto diet requires you to be a tad more watchful of what you're consuming. Elite Daily explains that the keto diet works by making your body go into ketosis, a process that is achieved from a low-carb and high-fat diet. Since the main source of energy in the human body comes from glucose, which is derived from carbohydrates, reducing the amount of carbs consumed makes your body switch to the burning of fat for energy.

While you could drink alcohol on a keto diet, the alcohol will meddle with your body's ketosis. An Atkins nutritionist tells the Elite Daily that since alcohol is considered a toxin by our bodies, the liver prioritizes processing it before all other nutrients. This means the fat that keto followers want to be burned will take a backseat, slowing the process of ketosis.

That being said, alcohol does not stop the ketosis process altogether, it merely slows it down. You can reach for a cocktail every now and then but if you do plan to do so, there are some types of alcohol that are more suitable for the keto diet than others.

Several spirits contain zero carbs

According to Healthline, there are several spirits that contain no carbs which makes them suitable for the low-carb keto diet. For example, ½ oz of gin, rum, tequila, vodka, and whiskey all contain zero carbs. The next best choice would be a 12 oz light beer, which has around three grams of carbs, and now, you may even be able to find a zero-carb beer. Red and white wines contain only about three to four grams of carbs per 5 oz glass. The Spruce Eats, however, warns that sweeter wines do tend to have a higher carb content, and can get to as many as 10 grams per 4 oz pour.

What you should avoid on a keto diet, are cocktails that are high in carbs from the use of sodas, syrups, juices, and sweeteners. One 240ml cup of sangria can have 27 grams of carbs whereas a serving of Pina colada can have up to 32! Instead, Healthline recommends making your own cocktails using keto-friendly low-carb mixers. Sugar-free tonic waters, seltzers, and diet sodas all tend to have zero carbs. Mix gin with a sugar-free tonic and you'll have an alcoholic drink with no carbs at all!

If you are drinking alcohol, Elite Daily says that you should be prepared for the effect of booze to hit you much harder. Because your body is getting its fuel from fat and not carbs, you'll find your alcohol tolerance to be much lower than usual.