Drinking is as American as apple pie and football but like a lot of things that are "All American" that doesn't mean that it is necessarily right for you. Alcohol consists of 7 calories per gram, which is almost two times more than carbs or proteins. The real downside to alcohol is that it has no nutritional value. Acetaldehyde and acetate are the by-products of alcohol. Acetaldehyde and acetate trigger the sick and uneasy feeling that people get when they drink too much. Alcohol also lowers testosterone levels and raises cortisol levels. Testosterone is key to fat loss because it is the anabolic hormone that builds muscle, which leads to more fat loss. Cortisol is a catabolic hormone, which breaks down muscle tissue and causes unfavorable insulin levels. Alcohol also damages the liver and stomach. The liver detoxifies the body, and alcohol is considered poison by the body. When toxins are present in the body, the body will stop metabolizing food and focus on detoxifying itself. Throughout the detoxification process, carbs and proteins will not be metabolized and instead converted over to excess fat. Chronic alcohol use will damage the stomach long term as well. Any damage done to the stomach will slow down the metabolic process. Drinking in moderation should not have this long term effect on your stomach. Drinking in moderation is different for everyone. Drinking should not only be based on size and weight but gender as well. Women should not consume more than one alcoholic beverage in a day, and men should not consume more than two drinks in a day. It is recommended not to consume alcohol more than four times a week. I recommend limiting drinking to two times a week. The motivation for this blog stems from my personal experiences as a trainer dealing with the general public and watching people struggle with their addictions because it is popularized throughout our culture. My occupation is more than just teaching yoga and demonstrating safe lifting techniques. I coach people through life, and unfortunately, I have and continue to see too many people dependent on alcohol, and it's numbing effects. Alcohol is an addictive legal drug that has been engrained in our culture as Americans. Drinking in moderation is fine. Numerous studies show that drinking in moderation is beneficial for your heart health, but unfortunately, many people can not drink in moderation and abuse alcohol. Please keep all these things in mind before you have your next drink.