Any nutritional expert (or Byrdie editor, for that matter) can attest: If you're looking to whittle your waistline, nothing has as huge an impact as giving up alcohol, at least temporarily. But while we always figured that the sugar and calorie content of most cocktails was to blame for weight gain, a new study shows that this actually isn't the primary link.
Researchers from Harvard have found that it's actually alcohol's impact on decision-making is actually the main culprit. (We're looking at you, late-night ramen.) "If you’ve had three glasses of wine at a restaurant, you might be more likely to order the slice of cheesecake," Professor Eric Rimm explained. "And the greasy breakfast the next morning." So while an extra cheesy breakfast burrito may be your tried-and-true hangover cure, chances are it's not doing you any favors on your journey to health. (No surprises there.)
That being said, a glass or two of vino alone isn't enough to tip the scale. Dr. Rimm even went as far as to say that drinking in moderation could actually increase some people’s metabolism. Can we get a cheers to that?
Our bonus tip: If you know you're prone to tipsy snacking, keep your cupboards clear of junk food and stock your fridge with healthy snacks like raw veggies and hummus. (It sounds like it won't be appealing at that hour, but trust us—you won't be that picky.) Plus, curb those hangover hankerings by knocking back plenty of electrolytes after a night out.
Looking for more ways to prevent blowing your diet? Check out our guide to socializing more mindfully, and share your own tips below!