Alcohol While Keto?

People like to get healthy, burn body fat, increase their aerobic capacity, and improve their cognitive function. The ketogenic diet is an excellent way to obtain those outcomes, which partially explains its meteoric rise in popularity. But people also like to drink alcohol. You might say it’s a toxin—I wouldn’t disagree. You might say we’d be better off without it—perhaps. The fact remains that people have been drinking for tens of thousands of years, and they’re not going to stop anytime soon.

Can keto and alcohol coexist? Is there anything we need to take into consideration?

First things first, does alcohol inhibit ketosis?

There are very few human studies that even look at this issue. Let’s go over the best one I could find.

How Does High Intake of Alcohol Affect Ketosis?

A 2002 study out of Poland examined the bodies of 16 recently deceased people who had died from hypothermia, mostly alcohol-induced. Most were alcoholics. They found that ketone levels and blood-alcohol levels were inversely proportional. The higher the blood alcohol, the lower the ketones. The higher the ketones, the lower the blood alcohol. In the discussion section, the authors explain:

Liver cells ‘‘engaged’’ in ethanol utilization do not accumulate larger amounts of Ac-CoA (which is a substrate for ketogenesis) because an increase in the NADH/NAD ratio during ethanol oxidation inhibits b-oxidation of fatty acids, and the acetate created from ethanol is activated to AcCoA mainly in the non-liver tissues which cannot produce ketone bodies.

In other words, at a high enough intake, alcohol metabolism supersedes and inhibits ketogenesis because both processes occur in the liver along similar pathways. The Polish study is an extreme example—alcoholics, hypothermia, death—but the basic mechanism is sound.

What About Normal (Moderate) Intake?

In real world situations, however, where people are having a drink or two, low-sugar alcohol (red wine, spirits) is unlikely to derail ketosis. Sugary drinks will inhibit ketosis because of the sugar. Alcohol-induced junk food bingeing will inhibit ketosis because of the junk you’re eating. But it appears to take some serious doses of ethanol to make a noticeable dent in your ketone production. Even then, a degree or two less ketosis isn’t the end of the world (unless you have a serious health condition warranting constant ketosis, in which case are you sure you should be drinking?).

A friend of mine, Mark Moschel, is the health evangelist for Dry Farm Wines and an avid keto dieter and self-experimenter. He recently ran an interesting experiment to determine the effects of his low-sugar dry-farmed wines on ketosis. (If you’re a numbers junkie and love charts, you’ll appreciate seeing how he put it together.)

He fasted for three days to get deep into ketosis. Two days in, he opened a bottle of wine and started drinking.

After the first glass, there was no change. Ketones and blood sugar held steady.

After the second glass, ketones dropped a bit. Sugar rose a bit.

After the third, ketones dropped some more. Sugar went down this time.

Yet, at no point was he “out of ketosis.” Even after the third glass, he was still showing 1.4 mmol. And upon waking the next morning, he had bounced back to 2.3 mmol. By the afternoon, ketones were back above 4 mmol.

Something tells me the “3-day wine fast” is going to catch on in some circles….

Are There Any Negative Interactions Between Alcohol Consumption and Ketogenic Diets?

Maybe. A commonly reported side effect that hasn’t been shown in studies (because the studies haven’t been done) is reduced alcohol tolerance on keto. People report getting drunk quicker and having worse hangovers. Let’s assume for the sake of this post that it’s true, that the anecdotes are conveying something that’s actually happening to a large portion of the keto-eating world. What could be causing reduced alcohol tolerance?

Crowded CYP2E1 Pathway

Alcohol detoxification occurs along two enzymatic pathways, one of which—the CYP2E1 pathway—is also activated by ketone bodies. The CYP2E1 pathway is ultimately a detox pathway, but some of the metabolites it produces in response to the various toxins it processes, like alcohol, acetaminophen (Tylenol), and tobacco, can increase liver inflammation and peroxidative damage. If the ketones you’re making are triggering CYP2E1, drinking alcohol may put you over the top and push you toward greater oxidative stress.

This could explain part of the reason why drinking on an empty stomach (fasting, hence elevated ketones) tends to heighten the toxicity and enhance the hangover.

Excessive Omega-6 Fatty Acid Intake

A high-fat diet can very quickly become a high-omega-6 fat diet if you aren’t careful about the foods you’re eating. You’re eating out for lunch every day at Chipotle; it’s low carb, but everything is cooked in rice bran oil. You’re snacking on almonds and sunflower seeds. Your favorite meat is whole chicken with the skin on, and you use the chicken drippings to cook up a bunch of greens. The more fat, the better, right?

All those foods are moderately-to-very high in omega-6. If that’s a daily diet, you’re getting upwards of 30+ grams of omega-6 fats, mostly linoleic acid. Why is this a problem specifically in the context of alcohol?

Omega-6 fatty acids, especially linoleic acid, are particularly harmful when you drink alcohol:

Polyunsaturated fats combined with alcohol also raise CYp2E1 more than alcohol alone, an indication of the combination’s toxicity.

Saturated fats, such as cocoa butter, coconut oil, and monounsaturated fats, such as avocado oil, olive oil, are far better in the context of alcohol.

Inadequate Choline Intake

High-fat diets are liver-intensive. The more fat you eat, the more choline you need to help metabolize it. High-fat diets with inadequate choline can lead to fatty liver, even if you’re eating the most Primal-friendly balanced source of fats.

Alcohol is also liver-intensive. The more alcohol you drink, the more choline you need to help metabolize it. High-alcohol diets with inadequate choline almost always lead to fatty liver, even if you’re drinking the healthiest, purest sources of ethanol.

Combining alcohol and a high-fat ketogenic diet requires even more choline than either alone. The best sources of choline are egg yolks and liver. Make sure you’re eating enough of one or the other to support your liver.

Inadequate Intake Of Phytonutrient-Rich Plants

Whether it’s coffee, chocolate, ginger, turmeric, green tea, the phytonutrients within the wine itself, or even non-psychoactive cannabidiol in cannabis, most plants make alcohol less toxic. Keto dieters who drink should definitely eat some or all of these foods.

Alcohol consumption presents a few notable challenges to people following a ketogenic diet, but they aren’t by any means insurmountable. Provided you eat a good ketogenic diet—not too much omega-6, adequate choline, plenty of phytonutrients— and make good beverage choices, moderate amounts of alcohol shouldn’t throw you out of ketosis or pose any special threat to your health.

I know we have a lot of readers with considerable experience following a ketogenic diet. Have you noticed anything different about the effects of alcohol? Has drinking hit your harder? Has it inhibited ketosis for you? I’d love to hear your experiences.

For those who are interested in a keto-friendly option, Dry Farm Wines is what I drink (and have for the last two+ years). (For those of you who stopped by our keto cocktail hour at Paleo f(x), we were serving up Dry Farms Wines there.) Mark M. and his team are good people in my book, and they get what the Primal message (and keto living) is all about. In my estimation, they’re the perfect choice for keto dieters who want to drink good wine and limit the negative health ramifications of alcohol consumption.

All their wines are lower in alcohol, 12.5% ABV or lower (validated by regular tests). Less alcohol, less toxicity.

All their wines are also low in sugar, with a maximum of 1 gram per liter. A fourth of a gram of sugar per glass doesn’t make a difference.

All the wines are dry-farmed, meaning they’re less “washed out” from excessive watering, more complex, and more of the “grapeness” comes through in the finished product. That usually means a higher percentage of polyphenols as well, many of which mitigate the deleterious effects of consuming ethanol as mentioned above. If you’re interested, check ’em out.

In the interest of full disclosure, I’m a proud affiliate of theirs as well as a big fan. I only support and advertise a few companies on Mark’s Daily Apple that I thoroughly believe support healthy Primal living in the modern world. If it’s not in my kitchen, it’s not on my blog.

Have a great day, everybody. Take care and Grok on.

TAGS:  Keto Recipes

About the Author

Mark Sisson is the founder of Mark’s Daily Apple, godfather to the Primal food and lifestyle movement, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Keto Reset Diet. His latest book is Keto for Life, where he discusses how he combines the keto diet with a Primal lifestyle for optimal health and longevity. Mark is the author of numerous other books as well, including The Primal Blueprint, which was credited with turbocharging the growth of the primal/paleo movement back in 2009. After spending three decades researching and educating folks on why food is the key component to achieving and maintaining optimal wellness, Mark launched Primal Kitchen, a real-food company that creates Primal/paleo, keto, and Whole30-friendly kitchen staples.

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65 thoughts on “Alcohol While Keto?”

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    To be certain, I advocate AVOID DANGERS LIKE OUR EARLY ANCESTORS DID… but this whole ancestral living thing has gotta be practical, or it doesn’t work. That said, if you can become more robust… if you can build biological resilience so that you can better withstand dangers, poisons and toxins, by all means, have some poison.

    There’s nothing wrong with a little alcohol from time to time… especially if it’s done right! Wife and I have drinks every now and then and it’s clear that the benefits of the sensible indulgence outweigh anything else. An interlude with a good drink (a bottle of wine, or a bottle of Everclear) can deepen the experience… it can strengthen the bond… it can be profoundly positive… in context, of course. There’s no room in my life for hangovers, which is why I only drink 95% ethanol… here’s how I do it…

    NOTE: Ethanol (aka alcohol) is the intoxicating agent found in beer, wine and liquor. The problem these days is that alcoholic drinks are not pure enough… commercial interests add terrible, terrible things for looks, taste, texture, preservatives… and the list goes on (think even more poisons). These additive poisons wreak havoc on your liver, body and brain and cause hangover-like symptoms. Why not just avoid them altogether.

    Start with an empty stomach. Yep, that right! If ya don’t, you’re sending your liver to work overtime. Next, take some liposomal glutathione 15 to 30 minutes before your first drink. With your first drink, and each subsequent drink, throw 4 or so Liver capsules down the hatch. This is what I drink…

    – Everclear – 1 shot
    – Lemon/s – 1 to 2 freshly squeezed lemon juice with a little rind shaved off into the mix
    – Sparkling Mineral Water – 16 to 24 oz of top shelf sparkling… I go with Mountain Valley Spring Water or Pierre Cans (always in glass or cans)
    – Pink Himalayan Sea Salt – 2 grams or a few big pinches… salt enough so that you taste it; this should be a salty, citrusy drink
    – Ice – (optional) I make my ice from Mountain Valley Spring Water

    Stir, drink and be merry with friends and loved ones. I usually have 3 of these and I’m totally good to go! Wife has 1 to 2 and she thinks she’s hilarious (that’s when I know she’s really buzzed). It’s imperative to only have these drinks, or non-calorie drinks (w/ no fake stuff) or you’ll ruin the whole thing. Let your liver do it’s thing… let it work and let it breathe. Before binging on primal fare, wait at least 15 to 30 minutes from the last sip of your last drink, have another round of liposomal glutathione, wait a few minutes and have at it! Here’s a summary…

    1. Start with people that you like… people in your tribe
    2. Empty stomach
    3. Liposomal glutathione (Core Med Science; take as directed)
    4. Liver capsules
    5. Make drinks; don’t forget the pink sea salt (otherwise) it doesn’t work
    6. Only consume these drinks and/or mineral water… no food whatsoever (except Liver capsules) or it doesn’t work
    7. Re-dose w/ Liver capsules before each drink
    8. Liposomal glutathione; round 2
    9. Eat eggs with extra yolks; I have round 9 to 12; wife has 6 to 8
    10. Liposomal vitamin C (Mercola, take 2)
    11. Maybe some melatonin before bed (1 mg or so)

    If you’re not gonna eat eggs, make sure that you down a good 6 egg yolks (otherwise) it doesn’t work, and take some liposomal vitamin C with your meal. The next morning, I feel great… I’m productive… I’m still in ketosis (above .5mM)… I’m ready to go… no hangover symptoms that linger into the day nor the next day. This is what works for me… perhaps it could work for you!

    1. Interesting information LiverKing; always enjoy your responses (especially the ones regarding oral health). I’d like to add that consuming dandelion greens and/or Milk thistle supplements (you can find some with added dandelion) is something I also do before and after alcohol consumption, which I only do on weekends. Also like to incorporate beets, garlic, radish and arugula – all liver-cleansers – into my bigASS salads when I drink.

      1. Hmmm… it’s the choline that you’re really after. Perhaps you could binge on some sprouted chickpeas (creamy hummus anyone?), and even though I don’t believe in supplements (and yes, I own a supplement co.), you may want to consider a phosphatidylcholine supplement.

        Betaine may also be a good option. Remember, nothing does it like a whole-food super-food (i.e. eggs). If you’re allergic to them, dump the whites. If you’re allergic to chicken eggs, pick up some duck eggs. Eggs are terribly nourishing so figure out a way to get to the center of ’em!

        1. Hi, Liver King. I’ve been trying to find out if this is true: Are egg yolks essentially pure HDL Cholesterol? (If so, a reason to eat raw – max cooked soft boiled to avoid oxidation of the HDL). Please tell me you’re the guy w/ the answer! (Can’t confirm answer to this question despite online searching). Thanks!!!!

          1. Egg yolks are predominately saturated and mono, with just a side of polyunsaturated (the most unstable, most likely to go rancid). That said, eat ’em raw or cooked with runny yolks but don’t ruin ’em on high heat. I’m less concerned about the small percentage of rancidity versus losing choline, folate and other heavy hitters.

            I mainly eat my eggs raw (with a few dots of fermented fish sauce) but when we cook ’em, we use tallow or ghee and cook on low to medium heat and remove them well before they’re done. You’d be surprised how much they’ll continue to cook once you put ’em in your bowl or plate. As a bonus, I usually add a few extra raw yolks to my cooked dish to make it extra rich, creamy and amazing.

            Mark has a good article on eggs somewhere in here… poke around.

    2. That is sure an easy and convenient way to let it go and enjoy a few drinks with friend…

      1. Yeah, I get it! If you’re into easy and convenient, maybe this isn’t for you. Maybe have someone else make your drinks… make your food… and maybe someone else can even work out for you 🙂 Point is, this concoction works if you’re into Keto and if you’re into feeling great the day after.

        Best things in life require a little effort… a little time… a little love… a road less traveled.

        1. If having a few drinks requires every step you described, sorry but you have failed… Just don’t drink then.

          1. LOL… I’m okay with failing… it means I went for it… I swung for the fences… in Curious’ eyes, I failed. I’m appreciative for that feedback bc other incredible people here (Stefan especially) call me out on my impracticable suggestions. Things that seem like “no braniers” to me end up being ridiculous to others. I’m starting to get… I’m learning from it… I’m aiming to improve. Thanks to Curious… thanks to all!

    3. I like this post.
      Also thanks Liver King. Good rundown there. I’m on the dole so I probably can’t practicably follow all of this advice (and as you mentioned it’s a synergistic formula) but I’ll save a link to this too. I’ve been enjoying some of your posts when I get the chance to peruse the comments.
      I go through lots of beer and this knowledge could help. Of many things I’ve tried to mitigate hangovers, some of them that I’ve found helpful are lemons and limes (and oranges and tangerines to a lesser extent) and salt, molasses, and extra sleep is usually imperative. Hearty foods too, including the eggs and liver. Bacon seems to help. Sometimes I feel like nuts and seeds can make good munchies when drinking but I’ve been wary of gorging on them since previously reading here about omega-6 and alcohol in combination being hepatotoxic or stressful.

      1. I thought you’d never ask! I shamelessly recommend Ancestral Supplements ( but Vital Proteins and Dr Ron’s are both Grass Fed / Finished, freeze-dried, non-defatted and sourced from New Zealand.

        Can’t go wrong with any of these. I’m pretty sure that all are available Amazon Prime w/ 2-day shipping.

    4. Intriguing post but 2 thing to consider. One serious, one maybe informative:

      1. Alcohol on empty stomach is one of the main causes of alcoholic ketoacidosis which is dangerous in general but is even more likely/dangerous if a person is already in sustained ketosis prior to drinking on an empty stomach.

      A few drinks may work for you, but as mentioned in Marks post, if you are keto your tolerance can be much lower = get more drunk = less control of how much you drink which could = serious problems especially on an empty stomach.

      And as Mark mentioned: “This could explain part of the reason why drinking on an empty stomach (fasting, hence elevated ketones) tends to heighten the toxicity and enhance the hangover.”

      2. Mercola “Liposomal” products. I like Dr. Mercola but these “liposomal” products are a bit misleading:

      “However, despite a misleading name, Dr. Mercola has made no secret of the fact that his product doesn’t contain liposomes. In his long product description he says: “phospholipids in the capsule can form liposomes in the stomach“1. In other words, he is giving you all the ingredients to form a vitamin C liposome in your stomach, but not actually giving you vitamin C liposomes.”

  2. Another great reason to love Dry Farm Wines: no “Asian flush” or respiratory issues that many Asians suffer. My Asian family loves Dry Farm Wines for that reason alone!

  3. Just what I needed – thanks Mark!
    High grade IPA beers … here I go 🙂

  4. Great article! Thank you for the suggestion on which wine to try. Wine is an absolute requirement for me, so being able to enjoy it from time to time with minimal impact to my health goals is wonderful!

  5. With the legalisation of Cannabis is several US states I’m wondering about the impact THC and/or CBD has on Ketosis? Given Mark’s own admission of enjoying a joint the night before a race I wonder if he is well placed to give us the low down?

    Asking for a friend of course 😉

  6. I have been Keto for years now. Don’t measure or track anything but eat high fat, low carb moderate protein. Gives me great body composition and energy at the age of 52. And yes, I consume some alcohol. Love Dry Farm wines. Have the occasional Grey Goose and soda. And last night at the Kesha concert had three beers. Which is more carbs that I normally consume. Also had a totally Keto dinner…big slab of beef and some green veggies. Woke up feeling amazing. Other than coffee didn’t eat again until after 11 am. I definitely watch my alcohol intake, but think I am at the point where I have truly
    reached that metabolic flexibility that Mark and Brad talk about in The Keto Reset Diet

  7. Yes, I am definitely more sensitive to wine while in ketosis. I would have 2-3 glasses of wine (with food) and be nearly under the table. I am small boned and thought maybe I was developing an intolerance to alcohol which was scary. Looking back to when I drank more, which wasn’t necessarily a lot, I was carb heavy and more muscular. Now that I’m ideal weight and in ketosis much of the time, I have to be careful with my alcohol, or not any at all. Great article, thanks

  8. Hi, this line jumped out at me:

    Omega-6 fatty acids, especially linoleic acid, are particularly harmful when you drink alcohol:

    Can I assume this applies to ALA, the supplement alpha-linoleic-acid?

    1. OOOF, the supplement is alpha lipoic acid. It’s getting late in the day and I’m tired.

  9. Thank you for the great information. I do like my red wine and have been struggling to lose weight but also have a condition with colitis. The wine is most likely not helping the issue.

  10. If I can’t eat eggs, and don’t like liver, can I supplement with choline? What would be a good dose?

    1. There are lots of good grass fed liver capsules on the market. I’d recommend asking the supplier for their lab results.

  11. I have found that I am more susceptible to gout when drinking on Keto.

    1. Gout is an issue with me too when diving into Keto. Especially when I stop drinking all together. I feel it is the rapid weight loss and the dramatic reset to the liver. I found that cutting back to one vodka soda before my last meal is necessary. Stepping up hydration is necessary too. One other observation is I tend to go harder on my lift days. That post lift day muscle soreness often is accompanied with the onset tinge of gout. This is the only time I take Naproxen Sodium but is seems to be necessary in I want to avoid a gout attack.

  12. Great article as usual, Mark! Ever since trying Dry Farm Wines, I am a convert. There is nothing like them, and I feel great after drinking them, even if I overindulge on occasion…

    With that said, I do drink beer on occasion, maybe 1-2 nights per month. I drink only on weekends, and I have been on a ketogenic diet/in ketosis consistently for the last 3 years. I notice that, when I drink beer, I have a tendency to get hypoglycemic. In fact, I once woke up in the middle of the night feeling extremely dizzy and disoriented. The symptoms didn’t subside until after I ate a banana, which raised my blood sugar (normally, fruit is not part of my diet). I’ve read a bit about how alcohol spikes insulin production, and on a keto diet, my blood sugar is low, so the excess insulin would likely be causing the hypoglycemia. However, I’d love to know more about this–is there a greater risk of hypoglycemia for those of us that consume alcohol while on a keto diet?

    Lastly, I just want to clarify that this only happens when I drink beer, and usually if/when I haven’t eaten much prior to or while drinking. It has never once happened when I drink Dry Farm Wines, or equivalent natural wines.

  13. I’ll have 2-3 drinks of Scotch or Bourbon a week. Absolutely no change to my numbers or my body composition. As Elizabeth mentioned, I think I also have metabolic flexibility. I don’t even think about or worry about the alcohol. Lots of liver and eggs for me. so that is helpful.

  14. I find that taking one 100 mg capsule of L-theanine (the ingredient found in green tea) before drinking alcoholic beverages, and one additional capsule afterwards, drastically reduces the potential for hangover. I recommend this to all my nutrition clients who like to imbibe and we all swear by it! Also, we cannot measure, but really need to appreciate, the health benefits of socializing with friends over a frosty cold one (people with healthy social circles live longer).

    Eating lean protein (and less sat fat) on a day you’re going to drink (to avoid an over-abundance of linoleic acid) is a good idea. I first read that about 8 years ago with guru, Martin Berkhan.

  15. What jumped out at me was high O6 from snacking on almonds…this was in the fish oil post too, and it’s got me looking twice at how much is too much. I have a handful or two almost every day, and not supplementing with O3 ( although just started an experiment with daily supplements or fish). Too much?
    Thanks as always for the excellent post—I’ve been wondering about alcohol too!

  16. I found something better than wine.
    Smirnoff Spiked Sparkling Seltzer (I like the Cranberry Lime flavor). It has zero sugar, no artificial sweeteners, no preservatives, natural flavors. Although fermented from grains, crafted to remove gluten, 90 calories, 4.5% alcohol, 1 carb.

  17. Alcohol in ketosis is just one aspect of alcohol use in a healthy lifestyle. For me personally I perceive alcohol to play not a vital but an extremely useful role.

    I drink about 40 gm of ethanol just about every day in the form of a classic gin martini made with 3.5 oz of premium gin (healthy fats in that olive, brother). I consider gin to be a very special spirit because it is comprised of water, ethanol, and botanical substances like the l-terpenes from juniper berries which are known to have a tonic effect on the human organism – and none of the hundreds of dubious organic chemicals (referred to as “cogeners”) contained in whisky or tequila. I always consume this martini between 5:00 and 7:00pm, and I very rarely drink anything else at any time of day or night. I have this drink immediately before and with the evening meal which I personally prepare from scratch with fresh ingredients and consume with my wife of 51 years.

    The martini seems to me to punctuate and enhance the transition from “doing” – being responsible, making things happen, solving problems, exerting myself – to “not doing” – resting, refreshing, nourishing, regenerating. Subjectively, I feel like this one drink, consumed with food, stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system. The alcohol research, so-called, tends to produce the opposite result, but in my opinion, virtually all of the alcohol effects research is dreadful – just about the junkiest junk science you can find anywhere.

    I will be 80 on my next birthday, my resting heart rate, measured with a Polar FT7 heart rate monitor as an average over 3-5 minutes is 51-52. I ride a mountain bike on intermediate level trails – often in a fasted state – and recently recorded a maximum heart rate of 167. This is considerably higher than the HRmax predicted by any of the recently validated formulas. My GGT level is 16, so I have to conclude that my liver thrives on classic gin martinis. I take no prescription medications and no over-the-counter medications. I am not trying to brag here, I am just trying to document that by just about any measure my health and physical condition is exceptional for a person my age.

    My personal belief is that alcohol in the right form and used properly is a health food. This conclusion is based on my personal experience, but I dearly wish that some enterprising biochemists, neurologists, and social psychologists would get together and design a quality research program to examine alcohol’s health effects under various real-world conditions. People like to drink, but a lot of what they drink is full of cogeners and sugar and genuinely toxic crap. Almost nobody has a clue what is in what they are drinking and what its health effects – positive or negative – might be. Millennials are currently destroying their livers in droves and even killing themselves with booze at distressingly early ages. Beliefs about alcohol and drinking in our culture are pathetically primitive.

    I think I’ve got it figured out for me, but I think it would wonderful for the rest of the world to know the score.

    1. Thanks for sharing that! Wisdom. I’m going to switch from whiskey (which I’m kind of over) to gin!

    2. May I suggest a Negroni? Gin, Campari (a very bitter, bitter) and Vermouth…lots of botanicals in that one. Had one today and it really primes the hunger. A great apertif.

      1. I love negronis, but Campari, being a liqueur, is full of sugar, and Vermouth, being a fortified wine, also has added sugar. You only need to look at the top of your Campari bottle around the screw cap after it has been in use for a while to see the crystalised sugar that accumulates. It’s a beautiful drink, but probably not helpful in this context.

        1. A Negroni has 1 ounce of Campari = 8 gr. sugar, and Vermouth 1 oz. has 4 gr. sugar. That’s 12 grams total. If that’s the only sugar you have all day long, I’m not too worried about it. Wether that throws you out of ketosis is another matter I think the bitters and botanicals overcome that. I may be wrong.

    3. Daniel , thanks for your comments. My father has been drinking the same over 60 years. He is in great shape at 87. He still enjoys his gin martini once a day and sips it , nurtures it . Never before the end of the work day. He has had some health issues over the years and bounces back. He watches his diet and eats healthy an golfs and plays tennis. enjoying his martini at the end of the day is something which makes him happy. He will have a glass of wine from time to time with the meal and that is it for him and he is happy with that and I think it enhances his health and well being. You have just ditto ed that for me. Enjoy !!

  18. I tried the website but I cannot figure out how to buy the wine on the website. I ended up signing up for a newsletter i don’t want and yelling “shut up and take my money!” at my phone, which did not comply.

    1. It’s subscription only I think—6 bottles every month or two months, $159. That’s what I saw.

  19. I won’t lie this is something I overdo and working on, and I like it fancy like my food. In or out of ketosis one of my rules of thumbs to avoid backlash is hyperhydration before starting, this often cuts a lot if not all of the undesired next day effects.

    As far as what to enjoy, well there are as many if not more tastes in all the available fermentations out there than in the foods we eat (ok it becomes food very fast). I cheat by doing my favorite classics like the Old Fashioned or the Ramos Gin Fizz among others by using xylitol or swerve or a monk fruit based sweetener to avoid the carbs very often. Many classics use bitters, which are a plus for the liver as well!

  20. Consumption liquor can deepen your level of ketosis,
    Brandy, cognac, vodka, tequila contain zero carbs are fine on keto.

  21. Wish I could try Dry Farm Wines but I live in Utah (where all alcohol import is controlled by the state). So many perks of living here (raw milk, ability to opt out of vaccinations, liberal home school laws, endless opportunities for hiking/biking/skiing) but the alcohol laws are annoying.

    1. I wonder if the carry Dry Farms wine at Smith’s in Evanston?

  22. Great post on the subject! Unfortunately for me Dry Farm Wines is a little too rich for my blood (cost wise) and I eat a fair amount of chicken because organic chicken is cheaper than other meats.

    c’est la vie

  23. I’ve been a Dry Farms member ever since I heard Mark talk about the company on the Joe Rogan podcast in 2016. I have loved every wine they’ve sent my way. The wines are lighter and less sweet than the U.S. wines that are filled with sugar and additives. My husband and I both notice how the wine provides a gentle relaxing effect, and then it seems to be out of the body within an hour or two after imbibing in a glass. I’ve never experienced a hangover with Dry Farm wines, but I’ve also never had more than two glasses….

  24. Thanks for that Apple for the Day !! I have been following the webinar and keto makes sense to me. I have been asking myself why no one has been speaking about alcohol consumption during the whole series. I think it was mentioned only once and very briefly . Thanks for the daily apple to clarify some of my questions. !!!

  25. Does this mean my GOBAD idea is unproductive? It’s similar to GOMAD (gallon of milk a day) except with beer.

  26. At almost 59 years old I went down from 105 kgs to 71 in about one year going Keto and drinking every day half a litre of Malbec red wine from Argentina and one whisky up to 3 times a week .
    I also trained HIIT twice a week , walked 6 kilometres diary for the last year , but now I´ve started 3 Karate 2 hours a week sessions two months ago wich is the most powerfull workout
    I´ve ever tried , so I gave up HIIT workouts but go on walking at least 12.000 steps a day that make me feel younger than I felt 20 years ago

  27. An alternative to the “dry farm” wines would be to drink any of the following: Cotes du Rhone, Willamette Valley Pinot Noir, a Spanish red (tempranillo or garnacha). These are all “bone dry” in the sense that they contain 5g/L of residual sugar, without exception. If you are drinking California red blends (for example, Apothic red is a common house wine, 15 g/L residual sugar. Yikes!) you are most likely getting a tablespoon of pure sugar to balance the acidity. This would not be the case with high-end California wines, but at the moderate price points, you can buy a $10 Cotes du Rhone, a $9 Spanish red, or a $14 Willamette Pinot and be assured that you are getting 5 grams or less in residual sugar. Washington state reds can also be very keto-friendly. “The Velvet Devil” merlot, commonly available in supermarkets contains 2 g/L residual sugar. Source:

    1. William Jones, thank you for that information! I don’t like the trend of higher alcohol content (and sugar) in wines here in CA, but I do love a good wine. I’ve taken notes. 🙂

      1. Glad it was helpful. I’ve spent years trying to find this information. Then I stumbled upon it on a Canadian Government website…anyway, I left off a good bone dry wine that doesn’t taste “dry”: Beaujolais. Any French version of the Gamay grape is between 2-5 g/L residual sugar. 2-3 times less sugar than a California red blend (or even Cabernet).

    2. Wow, thanks for this information, William. Can you suggest some brands of Spanish red (tempranillo or garnacha) that are low residual sugar (thus low carb)? I am following the keto way of eating and need to know of some affordable brands of red. Thanks!

  28. As many people like to drink alcohol then it’s important for them to know whether they can consume alcohol while following the keto diet or not? Thanks, Mark, for sharing such a brilliant post that clears various doubts and questions about alcohol and keto diet.

  29. I live outside the US and cannot receive wine shipments. Are there any recommended “commercial” wines that have a low alcohol and sugar profile I can look for in local markets?

  30. Very interesting and informative post. Thank you!

    I subscribed to Dry Farm Wines three months ago, seeking a more keto friendly wine option. I started drinking these wines because they are a healthier choice, but now drink them because I love them. They are just so much better! Fresh, fruit forward, balanced! I am very much a fan.

    I think natural wines like this are the future. The folks atDry Farm Wines are onto something.

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