The topic of alcohol is quite often overlooked in the world of bodybuilding because, let’s face it, we all love to have a cheeky drink every so often. But does alcohol impede your bodybuilding progress at all? Cutting down on alcohol can actually be very beneficial for a bodybuilding programme. There is a direct connection between the consumption of alcohol and it’s effect on muscle production.
Alcohol intake effects the release of human growth hormones. These growth hormones are an important substance and they are produced in order to assist in the building of muscles in the body. They can also aid cellular growth as well as optimising the growth of your bones. Human growth hormones are mostly produced when you sleep. Consuming alcohol before you sleep usually reduces the number of hormones your body produces. It can reduce by as much as 70% due to drinking too much alcohol before rest.
Alcohol can also affect your testosterone levels. Alcohol is usually synthesised in the liver which means it often becomes toxins which are used as a means of preventing the toxins that trigger the release of testosterone. This decrease of testosterone will seriously inhibit the levels at which your body allows your muscles to grow.
Alcohol is quite often seen as a toxin to the human body. In order to reduce the effects of alcohol, our body needs to spend more of its energy to eradicate the alcohol from our metabolism. The more energy that is needed to get rid of these toxins, the less remaining energy you have to recover your muscles. Alcohol is also a diuretic substance which can interrupt your natural hydration levels. Dehydration can lead to increased levels of fatigue and a decreased level of productivity. Without these, you will not have enough physical energy to train your muscles.
Glycogen synthesis is also something that is crucial to muscle growth. When alcohol is being consumed, the glycogen synthesis is replaced by alcohol synthesis. Avoiding alcohol before exercise is essential, as the lack of glycogen can often lead to elevated levels of fatigue. Alcohol intake also triggers an increase in blood pressure and can lead to a rise in your heart rate. During exercise, your heart is often working at maximum capacity and the rise of blood pressure levels which are caused by the consumption of alcohol will often make your workout a lot more physically demanding.
The consumption of alcohol can often lead to an increased level of calorie intake which can cause you to gain weight easily. A single gramme of alcohol often contains 7 calories of energy. A few grammes of alcohol quite often is the same of having a full meal, depending on what said meal is. Over time this will mean the more alcohol you consume, the more weight you put on.