Keto Hangover Cure & Alcohol Tolerance [E05]

Keto Hangover Cure & Alcohol Tolerance Cover Image
Drinking alcohol on keto can be rough! Between reduced alcohol tolerance and nightmarish keto hangovers, it's best not to overdo it. Join us as we discuss strategies to prevent and cure the notorious keto hangover.

Keto Hangover Cure & Alcohol Tolerance [E05] transcript powered by Sonix—the best audio to text transcription service

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Welcome to the Ketogasm podcast. I’m your host, nutrition educator Tasha Metcalf. Here to help women like you take charge of your keto eating habits without the self sabotage. Each week, learn simple but effective tips that you can put into practice to transform your body, health and well-being. We’re talking all things keto nutrition, habit change, mindset, self-care and the behind the scenes of what this all looks like in real life. Let’s dive in.

Welcome back to the Ketogasm podcast, I’m your host, Tasha Metcalf, and today we’re gonna be talking all about booze on the keto diet. I figured this would be a great follow up to last week’s episode, where I talked about keto during the holidays. Because I know that alcohol flows freely at a lot of holiday parties and events. And you might be wondering if that’s a keto “no-no’s”, or if you can actually partake in the imbibements. Now, before I really dive into this, I think it’s important to remember that keto is all about carb restriction. It’s about keeping your carbohydrate intake low. All right. So as long as you’re keeping your carbs low enough, technically anything can be keto, right? It’s not about this being off limits and this being not part of a diet. It’s not a specific list of ingredients that are good and bad, and keto “no no’s”, right? Depending on the carb count, alcohol can also be included on a keto diet. Now, I’m not suggesting that alcohol needs to be included in a keto diet. I’m not suggesting that it’s a good source of nutrition, because it’s not. And I’m not suggesting that it’s part of a healthy lifestyle. But we’re all adults and sometimes you might want to have a drink. So knowing what people are going to be getting into over the next few months, I figured it would be a good opportunity to go over keto friendly drink options. And what happens when you actually drink on keto.

To help you do it safely and effectively so you really don’t feel like garbage after you have a couple drinks. Okay. I’m going to teach you how to drink alcohol on keto without getting a hangover. I was really on the fence about whether or not to do an episode about this because I don’t actually drink anymore, but I used to drink quite a bit. To the point where it was a little bit excessive and it didn’t I didn’t feel good about it anymore. So I don’t drink anymore. But here’s the thing. I don’t ever want to push my eating habits or lifestyle choices on anyone. And I certainly don’t want to pass judgment on other people for being different than me. That’s ridiculous.

So I figured that I’d talk about it. Share some insight into what you can do to not feel like garbage when you’re drinking on a keto diet, because that’s totally possible. And basically just share my experiences and some of the things that I’ve learned over the years about drinking on keto. OK? Awesome.

Now that we’re all on the same page, the first thing that you should know about drinking on keto is that your alcohol tolerance is going to be a lot lower. And this is the first thing on my list because I don’t want you to be like, “oh, I’m drinking low carb booze. I can totally get away with this!” Because you are going to be in a world of hurt when you wake up the next morning, OK? Your tolerance is low. You’re not able to metabolize alcohol the same as before. All right. So if you used to drink your boyfriend under the table, you’re going to be like tipsy after two drinks. Okay. I promise you, this is a real thing.

If you are one of those people who have a tendency to drink a lot when you’re partying and celebrating, I would suggest playing in it cool. Seeing how you feel after one or two drinks. Don’t go hard. Like don’t do that to yourself. Okay? Just take it one drink at a time… for real. Okay. I don’t play the shot game. Don’t do that kind of thing because you’re not gonna be able to metabolize it as well and you’ll feel like a hot pile of trash.

A ketogenic diet is a natural diuretic. Okay. So you’re getting rid of a lot of the excess retained stored water in your body. When you eliminate carbs from your diet. But the same thing happens when you drink alcohol. You start urinating all the time and you know, you break the seal and you can’t stop going to the bathroom. Right. So when you combine these two things–drinking while doing keto–you can become really dehydrated. OK. So the best thing to do is make sure you stay hydrated. Don’t just drink alcohol while you’re drinking alcohol! Okay. Have some water. Have another drink that maybe replenishes your electrolytes and keeps you hydrated.

I know these probably aren’t the funnest things to drink, but they’re gonna help you feel like a normal person when you wake up in the morning. When your body’s dumping water like this, even beyond just dehydration, you’re actively flushing a lot. Lights out of your system and electrolytes are needed for all sorts of functions in your body. So if you don’t have a proper balance of electrolytes, you’re gonna feel pretty terrible. If you think back to when you first started keto and you had a really bad headache, or heart palpitations, or your legs were cramping, or whatever weird symptoms you were having when you first started. And were like, “Oh my God, this is so terrible!” Chances are that was due to an electrolyte imbalance. OK. So this is the same kind of thing that happens when you drink alcohol on a keto diet and you don’t replenish the electrolytes. This actually happens when you’re not doing keto as well, but it’s even more noticeable when you’re doing a carb restricted diet. OK.

So maybe don’t just drink water. Think about supplementing electrolytes, eating foods that are high in some of those electrolytes have. If you think about those typical like hangover cure type foods like pho, where it’s really high in sodium. Those really salty soups and things like that. That’s exactly what your body is trying to replenish because you’ve dumped so much from your system when you’re flushing electrolytes out. So you could start by taking some magnesium supplements or eating high potassium food, maybe eat more nutrient dense foods instead of those guilty pleasure drunk foods that you might you might opt for. OK. These are the kind of things that will actually help you feel better and prevent a really severe hangover from happening.

So maybe instead of just water, you opt for like a sugar free Gatorade or Powerade, something that has electrolytes in them. Some of those sports drinks are good options if they aren’t chock full of sugar or other ingredients that you’re trying to avoid. Salty broth or even those little bouillon cubes can be a really effective way to get sodium back into your system. And that’s going to help prevent that dizzy feeling or lightheadedness and even help alleviate that pounding headache. OK, so this is going to help you feel a little more normal because you’ve dumped so much of that stuff out of your system.

These are really easy things to find there at the grocery store, sometimes at the convenience store. These are things that you can just grab and go. Right. But you can make your own electrolyte mixes. There’s tons of different supplements out there like LMNT is a really good one. L-M-N-T. This is not a plug for them by any means, but it’s one that I personally use and enjoy. So there’s that. You can take that and mix it and then go on with your day.

So there’s lots of different options to choose from. And they’re not really that hard to do. So if you plan to drink, you should also plan to stay hydrated and replenish your electrolytes if you want to prevent the hangover of your life. OK. And this is speaking from experience. I have definitely been the victim of being ill prepared while drinking on keto. OK. So learn from my mistakes. Don’t be like me. Don’t do what I did. Hydrate and replenish electrolytes. That should be your motto. OK.

Now that you know that you can drink on keto and what to do to avoid those crazy keto hangovers. You might be wondering what kind of alcohol you actually should go for if you’re drinking on keto. Your best bet is to stay away from anything sugary at all. Mixed drinks are usually not your best bet. Any of those cocktail, fruity, fluffy, beautiful drinks? Those are not the things that you want to be going for on a keto diet. OK.

Before I really get into this, I want to give a shout out to Boozy Ketones. They are two sisters that are hilarious and they blog about keto and alcohol drinks. So if you’re looking for really fancy, beautiful, keto friendly alcoholic beverages, you should go to their blog, which is boozyketones.com. Or their Instagram profile and follow them there because they post the most amazingly hilarious stuff and all of their stuff looks delicious and beautiful and actually easy to do, which is amazing. Yeah, I don’t even drink. And they’re one of my favorite Instagram profiles to follow. So definitely check them out. All right.

Hard alcohol is usually really low in carbs, but you’re going to want to watch out for the mixers. The carbs are in the mixers. OK. So if you’re drinking cocktails, you want to watch out for those sugary syrups that get put in drinks. You want to watch out for like sodas, juices, any of those kind of things have a lot of sugar in them and a lot of carbs. Even some of the really common mixers that you would not suspect to have high carbs, like tonic water, are really high in carbs. So you have to watch out for it. I totally had no idea that tonic water had so many carbs in it. When I used to drink, I would order gin and tonics and I was like, “Oh, that’ll be low carb.” One can of tonic water has 32 grams of carbs, OK? So don’t do that. Don’t don’t go for the gin and tonic. There’s actually diatonic water. So if you are a tonic kind of person, you can get a diet option. So there’s the diet sodas, the diet tonics, the seltzer waters, things like that. It’s pretty limited, to be honest, but you still can have cocktails mixed with sugar free things. OK. For the most part, those really colorful froufrou, beautiful drinks are not something that you really want to go with. OK. If you’re not going to want to mess with those because they’re going to be way outside of the realm of keto if you’re trying to stick to that while you’re drinking.

As far as beer goes, I know that they make low carb options. I have no idea what it tastes like. I’ve never actually tried them even when I used to drink. I never really could tolerate beer very well. So I’m not sure. I don’t know about that. But they do exist and that could be an option for you. OK. And I know people who drink beer tend to be very particular about the flavor of it. So I’m not promising anything. But if you’re looking for low carb beers, they might be good for your diet. I don’t know if they’ll be suitable for your palate.

And for all my wine drinkers on keto, you can absolutely drink wine. You just have to opt for the dry wines instead of the sugary, syrupy sweet dessert wines. OK, the dry wines have a way lower sugar content and dramatically reduced carb content. All right. So opt for the dry stuff. Stay away from the sweet stuff and you should be good when it comes to wine. Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay or a dry Riesling are all really good options for low carb wine.

I will link in the show notes to a searchable, sortable, low carb alcohol guide and you can search for whatever it is that your heart desires and sort it by carb count or calories, or search it by the name whatever you want to do. It’s a really cool resource. So if you do have something in mind, go ahead and check that out first before committing to it. OK.

And this should really go without saying, but I’m going to say it anyways that when you do drink, the more you drink, the more carbs are tallying up. OK. So just because something is low carb that’s based off of one serving size. And I don’t know about you, but I have definitely considered like a 7-Eleven big gulp serving size as “one” glass of wine. So I don’t know how you portion out your alcohol servings, but be mindful that what you’re seeing is representative of one serving size of that drink versus what you might be actually consuming. So don’t fool yourself. You might be drinking a lot more carbs than you actually are giving yourself credit for.

All right. That’s all I have for today. I hope you guys have a wonderful safe holiday season. Please remember to drink responsibly, hydrate, replenish electrolytes and eat some real food. It’ll make you feel a whole lot better.

Thank you so much for tuning into this episode of the Ketogasm podcast. You are awesome. I really hope the show’s added value to your keto journey. Making big changes to your eating habits can be a little tricky, but if you’re taking the time to listen and learn about keto, you’re well on your way. You got this. Be sure to visit Ketogasm dot com for the show notes with full transcripts, references and resources to help you out, including a totally free course call. Hello keto. It’s helped over seventy five thousand people start keto with confidence. I’ll see you in the next episode by.

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Hello, and welcome back to the Ketogasm podcast, Easy Keto with Tasha! If you’re new to the keto diet or an experienced ketoer looking for tips to fine-tune your diet, then you’re in the right place!

Today’s episode is all about ALCOHOL! Specifically, we are discussing how keto affects alcohol tolerance and what you can do to avoid the dreaded keto hangover. 

Alcohol and Carb Restriction

Surprise! Alcohol is not entirely off-limits if you are following a keto diet. However, as we’ve discussed in previous episodes, the first step to keto is carbohydrate restriction and keeping your carb intake low. As long as carbs are kept low enough, technically anything can be keto. There is no specific list of ingredients that you absolutely can or cannot eat.

Enter alcohol. Alcohol can be consumed on keto, as long as a person’s carb intake allows it. This doesn’t mean that alcohol is nutritious, or necessary, or part of a healthy lifestyle; all this means is that as an adult, sometimes you want a drink. And as a keto dieter, it’s important to know that having a drink won’t destroy your diet. 

Keto Alcohol Intolerance

While you might have been able to handle a high number of drinks before, it is very important to take things slowly. Your alcohol tolerance will be much lower than usual when drinking on keto. This is due to the fact that your body does not metabolize alcohol the same way it used to. 

Just as you have created a new relationship with food, you will have to create a new relationship with alcohol. Take things slowly, understand your body’s new limitations, and remember that alcohol has carbs too!

Why Are Keto Hangovers Worse?

Ketogenic diets are natural diuretics; this means that during the diet, your body gets rid of a lot of the excess retained water it has stored. However, the same thing happens when you drink alcohol! When you drink while on keto, it is very easy for your body to become dehydrated. Add in the fact that your body metabolizes alcohol differently while on keto, and it’s no surprise hangovers are worse!

The easiest way to prevent keto hangover is to avoid alcohol. The second easiest way is to avoid drinking too much alcohol. This is where taking things slow is the best course of action. Play it cool and see how you feel after one or two drinks. Give yourself the time to understand that your body has changed. Avoid going too hard, because keto hangovers are NOT fun.

Keto Hangover Cure: Before & After Electrolytes

Electrolytes play a major part in creating major keto hangovers. With your body dumping a ton of water, as it does during both keto and consuming alcohol, you are dumping electrolytes as well. These electrolytes are necessary to keep the body running smoothly, so an imbalance is bound to cause issues. 

For some of you, you may have experienced this at the beginning of your keto journey as well. If you were someone who got a bad headache, heart palpitations, or leg cramps, there’s a big chance that was due to electrolyte imbalance.

Tips to decrease electrolyte imbalance:

  • Take magnesium supplements
  • Eat high potassium food
  • Focus on nutrient-dense food instead of typical drunk foods
  • Drink sugar-free Gatorade or Powerade between alcoholic beverages
  • Increase your sodium with salty broth or bouillon cubes
  • Create your own electrolyte mixes or supplement with pre-made mixes, such as LMNT

What Alcoholic Drinks Can I Have on Keto?

Now that you’ve prepared yourself in what to expect when drinking on keto, now you get to decide what to actually drink! Some alcohol is more keto-friendly than others, but there are definitely options to suit any desire. To make your life a little easier, check out our Keto Diet Alcohol Guide for a comprehensive list of alcohols sorted by carb count.

Mixed Drinks

As we discussed earlier, carb intake does play a part in consuming alcohol. Because of this, it is wise to avoid fruity, sugar-heavy cocktails. Hard alcohol tends to be quite low in carbohydrates; it’s the mixers you have to avoid (or at least choose diet or sugar-free options). 

Mixers to watch out for:

  • Soda
  • Juice
  • Syrups
  • Tonic water 

Beer

Being that I have never been much of a beer-drinker, I do not have any personal experience with low carb beer. However, it is definitely available! I can’t vouch for the taste or consistency of any particular brand, but there may be something that suits your needs.

Wine

It may come as a shock, but you can drink wine on keto. It is important that you opt for dry wines instead of sugary dessert wines. Dry wines contain a much lower sugar content than their syrupy counterparts, which helps to dramatically reduce the carb content.

These wines tend to be lower in carbs:

  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Chardonnay
  • Dry Riesling

Boozy Ketones

I am a huge fan of the two sisters behind Boozy Ketones. Not only are they hilarious, but they also share beautifully-made, keto-friendly alcoholic beverages. If you’re stuck in a rut on what to drink and need a laugh, check them out!

Resources

Hello Keto Course (It’s FREE!)
Keto Diet Alcohol Guide: Is Booze Okay if it’s Low Carb?
Keto Holiday Survival Guide: Tips, Menu, & Recipe Ideas [E04]

Timestamp

Intro
1:12 – Alcohol and Carb Restriction
3:24 – Keto Alcohol Intolerance
4:35 – Why are Hangovers Worse on Keto?
5:30 – Keto Hangover Cure: Before & After Electrolytes
9:02 – What Alcoholic Drinks Can I Have on Keto?
9:35 – Boozy Ketones
10:22 – Mixed Drinks
11:52 – Beer
12:29 – Wine

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