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Know What’s in Your Drink!

Posted by     on July 14, 2021

It is summer time! In my family this means lots of backyard BBQs, river floats, camping trips, birthday celebrations, and probably more alcohol intake than any other time of year. If you are intolerant to certain foods and find that some alcohols leave you feeling the same crummy way, we got you. I dove in and tried to sort things out. If you are intolerant to things like wheat, corn, potatoes or stevia there are definitely some alcohols that you will want to avoid. I’m breaking down alcohol… here we go!

Beer

Well… this is likely not the best choice for most. Most beers are heavy in the gluten. Many light beers are tainted with formaldehyde. If you just love the stuff your best bet is a gluten free beer like omission. Don’t turn your nose up at the GF stuff, they have come a long way and can offer a great taste without the bloat so, just try it!

Cider

Gluten free and tasty as hell! But also LOADED with sugar. You really need to look at the sugar content when consuming ciders. There are some brands like Seattle Cider Co and Avid Cider that have less sugar but we’re still talkin’ close to 10 grams per serving.

Hard Seltzer

The guilt free buzz! Most are gluten free but best to double check if that’s your deal. These bevies are touted to be low in sugars and calories, yay! But if you don’t tolerate stevia be on the lookout. Even within the same brand some can contain real sugar or the fake stuff depending on the flavor. Some brands also contain malted rice or barley, high fructose corn syrup and dyes. Two of my favorite clean brands of seltzer are Clean line and SeekOut.

The hard stuff…

I learned that most (I’m sure someone can find an exception) hard alcohols are gluten free. Even if made from wheat, the distillation process removes the gluten so this is generally not a concern. However, I do see people cross react to whatever the alcohol is made from. Meaning if you can’t do gluten, wheat based alcohols still may not be your friend. If nightshades or potatoes flare you up, probably best to avoid potato based alcohols too, get the drift?

Gin

I always thought this stuff was made from Juniper berries. Turns out it is mostly made from a grain base of wheat and barley. Juniper berries are added in 2nd distillation to add the unique flavor. If grain based alcohol aggravates you there are options. Cold river Gin is made from potato and G’vine gin made from grapes, the rest are likely wheat and or barley.

Whisky

I am a cowgirl at heart but have never been able to get on this bandwagon. Unless we’re talkin’ a shot of fireball in which case it tastes delicious going down but tears the hell out of my gut on the way through. Whisky is a mut! Made from a mash of grains. I made a list of a few common whiskeys so you can see where your fav lands. Crown is made from corn. Jack and black velvet are made from everything; corn, rye and barley. Jameson is only made from barley.

Vodka

This is my fav low cal bevy. Just mix with your favorite flavor of laCroix and call it a day! Grey goose and absolute are both made from wheat. Tido’s and Smirnoff are both made of corn but Tido’s is the only one with a brilliant marketing campaign to put gluten free on the label and fool people into thinking they are the only one… Because all vodkas are gluten free. Two good potato vodkas are Woody Creek Colorado and Nebula 9. Nebula 9 is also sweetened with stevia. Tastes delicious, very sweet but if stevia’s not your jam, watch out.

Rum

I always thought rum was made from sugar cane. And it is sometimes. But did you know that the most common rums, Captain, Malibu and Bicardi are all made from molasses? Rum is yum but yes the sugar… If you are someone with inflammatory issues, I’d be willing to bet that rum flares you up good because well, that’s what sugar does, flares inflammation, so beware!

Tequila

That’s right I saved the best for last! No grains or sugar here, this stuff is made from agave! Watch out for the cheep stuff though because legally tequila only has to be 51% agave. That means that the other 49% comes from sugar mash. So, make sure you get 100% agave tequila. Ever wondered about this silver gold BS? I did, so I looked it up! Silver tequila is not aged and has a much harsher taste. It is usually mixed in margaritas to make it tolerable. Reposado is where its at! Reposado is aged tequila that provides a much smoother taste. Much better for shooting! Also, if you have never taken a shot of tequila and quickly bitten into an orange covered on cinnamon, you must! Thank you, college days, for imparting your wisdom. My warning with tequila is the mixers (hence the genius shots idea) they can be full of things like high fructose corn syrup, sugar and yuck. Ask for a skinny margarita and they’ll give you something closer to actual lime juice.

All that being said, you know drinking is bad for you right? If you need liver support or help cutting back, please see myself or another Naturopath for ideas. I try to live by 3 drinking rules and I’ve done ok this far.

  1. Always drink the good stuff
  2. Never drink two days in a row
  3. Drink a glass of water between every alcoholic bevy

Enjoy your summer and stay safe. Cheers!
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