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A Brew or Two Postworkout?

Q: Is it okay to have a beer or two after training to relax?

A: Drinking alcohol after training is a horrible idea because alcohol will erase all possible performance gains and delay recovery. And that’s not just my opinion.

A recent study suggests that men who drank alcohol after intense training—squatting six sets of 80 percent of their one-rep max—experienced decreased uptake of testosterone to the muscle. That compromises muscle and strength development in the long run and also blunts any bodyfat loss.

The study was interesting because at first glance it showed that free testosterone was actually elevated in response to the combination of intense training and alcohol. Now, however, researchers think the elevation in bioavailable testosterone is not anabolic and that things aren’t working quite right in the body due to the presence of alcohol. They haven’t figured out what exactly is going on yet, but in light of other data we have on alcohol and athletic performance, you can see that it’s better to avoid drinking after training.

Q: I’ve heard that green coffee is good for fat loss. Any truth to that?

A: The antioxidants in green coffee aid in weight loss by inhibiting sugar absorption in the gut; also, there is evidence that green coffee enhances fat metabolism in the liver and retards the absorption of dietary fat. That means your body is absorbing fewer calories. Green coffee also increases the levels of a brain “factor” called BDNF that enhances energy and fat metabolism. BDNF is directly involved in optimal brain function, learning and memory.

—Charles Poliquin 


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