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Keto Alcohol

You Can Still Go to Happy Hour While on the Keto Diet, but Your Drink Options Are Limited

Photographer: Diggy LloydRestrictions: Editorial and internal use only. No advertising or print.Product Credits: Misha Nonoo top, Sandro pants, Jennifer Fisher earrings, Ash sneakers.

One thing that naturally pops into people's minds when considering a new diet is: How does this affect my alcohol consumption? It's hard enough as it is to cut out certain foods you love, but if dieting also affects your social life, then is it even worth it? Luckily, you can be on the now-ever-popular keto diet and still enjoy alcoholic beverages.

The ketogenic diet is a low-carb, high-fat meal plan that prompts your body to produce ketones by breaking down fats in your liver to use as energy. On a high-carb diet, your body produces glucose for energy instead, and because your fats aren't being used for energy, they get stored. In other words, the keto diet is all about consuming more fats in order to burn more fat.

Once you have a comprehensive understanding of what types of foods to eat on the keto diet (meat and produce that are low in carbs and sugar, and high in fat) and which foods to avoid (sugary, starchy foods high in carbs), the same principle can be applied to alcohol. That means saying goodbye to your favorite sugary cocktails and heavy beers.

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Those on the keto diet should keep their daily net carb intake to 25 grams or below. Meanwhile, one 12-ounce bottle of stout can have 16 grams of carbs, which means having just two beers could already put you over your carb limit for the day. As for the carb-loaded sugary drinks, one fuzzy navel can have a whopping 38 grams of sugar!

What are you supposed to enjoy at happy hour while on the keto diet? If you're not a spirits fan, not to worry, you can still drink some light beers and plenty of wine and sparkling wine. But the safest bets are going to be the hard (and unflavored) stuff.

Here's your menu:

  • Vodka: 0 carbs
  • Gin: 0 carbs
  • Tequila: 0 carbs
  • Whiskey: 0 carbs
  • Scotch: 0 carbs
  • Brandy: 0 carbs
  • Cognac: 0 carbs
  • Rum: 0 carbs
  • Dry red wines, like Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, and Merlot: 3-5 grams per 5-ounce glass
  • Dry white wines, like Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc, and Chardonnay: 3-5 grams per 5-ounce glass
  • Dry sparkling wine: 1.5 grams per 5-ounce glass
  • Light beers, like Budweiser Select 55, Michelob Ultra, and Miller 64: 2-7 grams per 12-ounce bottle

If you can't stomach drinking hard liquor straight, you can mix the options above with seltzer water, which has zero carbs and sugar, and add a squeeze of lemon or lime.

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Diggy Lloyd
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