Can bourbon make you fat?

We live in a world where everyone is obsessed with looking good, and there are numerous suggestions on how to shed off any bit of extra weight gained. People go to gyms, sign up for diet programs, and rid themselves of the unwanted fats.

For alcohol consumers, especially those that drink daily, or slightly more often than others, the main concern is knowing whether or not the alcohol increases their weight. This question is confusing, especially when the mental picture of a fat, pot-bellied uncle comes to mind. It seems for sure that people who drink bourbon mostly gain weight, and rapidly at that.

To answer this question, we must understand that there are many variables to look at regarding weight gain and not just the alcohol in itself.

Bourbon and Weight

“Can bourbon make you fat?” The answer, believe it or not, is a yes and a no. Bourbon can make you fat but can also make you lose weight. It depends on many other factors like your overall health, the amount of bourbon you drink, how often you drink, diet, and lifestyle. A history of health issues does play a part as well.

It is also good to note that just like any calorie-rich food or drink, alcohol can make you fat. It is advised to moderate any intake of foods and beverages that are rich in calories. But this is advice we never take, huh? That is why we end up running to reduce excess fats accumulating in our waistlines. On a lighter note, how will gym owners and diet program sellers get their daily bread?

One thing I would like to get out of the way is the frequency of consumption of your bourbon. If you discipline yourself to just a few glasses a week, you will likely not have to worry about any excess fat. On the other hand, if you prefer to drink daily, you will have to watch everything else you do and or consume. For those who take several drinks daily, maybe even finish half a bottle of bourbon in a day, good luck if you are not already overweight.

We will have to get deep into the science of food metabolism in the body to fully understand the relationship between alcohol and weight gain or loss.

What if the relationship between alcohol and fat?

The alcohol in the bourbon will not in itself make you fat, no. Scientifically, alcohol does not cause a fat loss because most of it is digested, metabolized, and then eliminated from the body, I guess then it is safe to say that it is suitable for weight loss? Then why do we see people who take alcohol gain excess fat? This may be because your bourbon has been manufactured with additional sugars and mixers to make it enjoyable. These mixers and sugars and sometimes even some flavors and colors are responsible for making you fat.

When alcohol is digested, it produces what we call “derivatives,” which are mainly viewed as toxins that the body needs to get rid of. The body makes the elimination of these derivatives, the metabolism of alcohol, a priority. This will mean that any foods and drinks you may have had before are pushed to the side to give way to the priority function. Depending on the amount of drinking you have had, the foods and drinks pushed to the side are stored as fats and may not be metabolized.


Camacho Corojo Gigante Stick

Metabolization Per Hour

Naturally, our bodies can only metabolize one “peg” of bourbon or alcohol per hour and be able to eliminate the toxins quickly. Therefore, this means that if you consume only a little alcohol in an hour, you are less likely to get fat. However, if you decide on drinking a lot of bourbon in an hour, you will definitely have problems. A quick hack to avoid this is to make sure that if you choose to drink a lot, you avoid taking any other foods and drinks that have high calories like processed, fried, densely colored, sweetened, and flavored foods drinks. Lightly nibble on nutritious snacks.

Once you consume a lot of alcohol, the body tends to deceive you that you are hungry, and there goes the temptation to gobble up a substantial scrumptious meal. Please DO NOT do this!

Want to know why you feel ‘hungry’ after consuming alcohol? The reason is that alcohol encourages appetite through “depleting the body’s carbohydrate storage.” Ever wondered why you only feel like eating fries and pizza while drinking? That’s why.

Alcohol also makes you frequently urinate, and this causes electrolytes like sodium in the body to go low, which means you will have fewer cravings of salty foods. So please do take water to prevent this “alcohol-induced dehydration.”

I told you we were going to go into science!

We have understood a great deal about how that glass of bourbon can make us gain weight, so let us look at a few tips to help us prevent this from happening.

How to take alcohol and not get fat

Drink lots of water

Remember, I mentioned keeping a bottle of water handy when you are enjoying your bourbon? This is very helpful as it will reduce dehydration and make things easy for the kidney and liver.

Eat before you drink.

This may be not very clear, but patience, please, let me explain. Eating a nutritious meal full of protein, healthy get, and fiber will help you manage the sugar levels in your blood, which will help with the carbohydrate cravings you may have when drinking. Something like hard-boiled eggs or oatmeal ought to do the trick.

Avoid some drinks

There is a general liking to having mixed drinks and cocktails, but this could be dangerous to your body. These drinks are extra sweetened, making you hungrier and containing some harmful chemicals that the organization may not fully metabolize.

Do not drink before going to bed

Oh, snap, right? I know you like to enjoy a glass of bourbon just before bed helps you get rid of the day’s stress and have a good night’s sleep. While this may be comforting, it is harmful to you as the alcohol you take increases your sugar levels, and chances are you will be running to your kitchen a few hours later for something to eat, which again will unlikely be healthy.

Drink moderately

We have talked about how drinking too much alcohol takes a toll on your body’s metabolism. So please regulate your intake. Experts advise you to drink about a glass or two of bourbon a day. In this case, it is still too much in my opinion. Daily drinking is still a harmful practice. Limit your bourbon time to occasional or even a little on the weekends. You can o this during the weekdays, help your liver take a breather!

In conclusion,

While they boast that bourbon contains no sugar or even carbohydrates, it is essential to consider all the above and take caution. The process of producing the bourbon that includes fermentation and distillation makes sure all the sugars are eliminated, but then again, there may be some bit of residual sugars. People who have diabetes prefer drinking bourbon or whiskey more than any other alcoholic drink because of this factor, the minimal amount of sugar in them.

When taken moderately, a glass of bourbon is right for you. For women, it is said to increase good cholesterol (HDL). Older adults living healthy will tend to attribute their longevity to drinking a couple of bourbon glasses a week. Drinks like vodka are known to be cures for common colds and headaches and are even included in herbal medicines, go figure!

I want to put the main points into a summary that you can quickly peruse.


Rocky Patel Vintage 1990 Petit Corona Open Box and Stick

Points to note

Alcohol in itself does not make you fat; it is attributed to weight loss.

Taking care of yourself in terms of overall health and diet is essential.

The sugars in your bourbon, the mixer you choose to accompany your drink, or the foods you decide to eat during and after you drink are the culprits of getting fat.

If you are to eat during your favorite bourbon drink, eat foods rich in fiber and protein.

Take lots of water while drinking. The diluting that water provides is suitable for your kidney and liver.

Overall, limit your alcohol intake to a few glasses a week, and you are good to go. Do not forget that alcohol is such a bully when it gets into the body. It will make the body shut down any metabolization of any foods you have eaten to prioritize the metabolism of alcohol.

Do not be tempted to gobble your bottle in a flash. You now know how harmful it is to your body.

Let us make that glass of bourbon a healthy one and mind our overall health. We know being unnecessarily fat affects us in many unhealthy ways. No wonder excessive alcohol consumption is associated with many health issues like the Fatty Liver Disease and the like.

Please do not be scared, though. There is some goodness in enjoying your bourbon glass as long as you do it in a gentlemanly way.

Did You Enjoy This?

Then consider joining thousands of other people who receive my monthly newsletter. It’s a collection of knowledge and guide for Cigars and Bourbon. It’s free to subscribe. Be part of my my team.