Why should you avoid alcohol while building muscles?

Many people are confused if alcohol is good for their health when trying to build muscles. While anything in moderation is good, excessive or regular consumption of alcohol is not advisable then building body. You might hang out with your friends or family on weekend, drinking becomes inevitable. There are chances you would even get tempted to drink.
However, alcohol affects your muscle building process negatively. All the clean eating and workout can go for a toss. Here’s a look at why Alcohol is not good for your health:

Alcohol is dehydrating

Excessive consumption of alcohol leads to dehydration because it lowers the production of anti-diuretic hormone which is required by the body to reabsorb water. You will feel a frequent need to urinate as well. It is advised that men and women should not drink more than four drinks on a single occasion. Since the muscles are 70% water, getting dehydrated is not a good thing when trying to build muscles.

Alcohol consumption hampers muscle growth

During resistance training, your muscles experience stress which leads to micro-tears in the muscle fibre. The protein synthesis process helps in repairing those tears. The repair is also supported by lean mass gainer supplements which help in building muscles. The alcohol inhibits the hormone required for protein synthesis for building muscle after exercise.

It lowers your testosterone level

Testosterone is the essential male hormone which allows the muscle to grow and repair.
When alcohol floats in your body, blood triggers several chemical processes which diminish the amount of testosterone in your body. Scientific studies show that there is a drop of 25% in the testosterone level due to alcohol consumption.
Your drink type also affects the impact on your testosterones. Beer consists of 2 chemicals which can increase oestrogen and affect your testosterone level. Wine and some other liquor also have these chemicals. The added calories from the drinks you consume can lead to fat gain and also increase the production of oestrogen.
It was found in a study that chronic intake of alcohol not only suppressed protein synthesis but also caused myopathy. Myopathy is a physical condition in which muscle fibres don’t function properly which results in muscle weakness. Alcohol can also interfere with your sleep which can increase hunger pangs and cravings. It enhances your food intake. It also lowers the metabolism.
However, if you can’t stay away from alcohol completely, giving up to the temptation once in a while is fine. You can have a drink or two if you follow these basic principles:

  • Take a protein-rich diet so that your muscles get fibre they need before you head out for drinks. Also, you should take water in-between the drinks to keep you hydrated.
  • Avoid drinking on the day you train. Several studies show that any meal consumed after 24 to 48 hours of resistance training was critical for the growth of your muscle.
  • The last but not the least; always drink in moderation.
  • Alcohol depletes your nutrients so you must consider taking a multivitamin and mineral supplement in your lifestyle.

Thus anyone who is aiming to build a body should keep away from alcohol and have fewer cheat days.