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Does Beer Cause Belly Fat – Truth Be Told

At some point in our life, we’ve heard the phrase, “drinking beer will give you a beer belly.” That’s a horrible association with drinking beer. Is there any truth to it? Does beer cause belly fat, really? The truth is what we are going to uncover here.


We are not going to ramble on about all the scientific studies out there because number 1: we are not scientists and number 2: BORING, right! Instead, we are going to get right to the nitty-gritty and by the end of this article you will not only be entertained but you will have an objective answer. As objective as we can be. Here we will cover:

What is Belly Fat, Really?


Beer & It’s Bad Rap


Beer, Calories, & Carbs


The Balancing Act of Drinking Beer


The Conclusion – Does Beer Cause Belly Fat

What is Belly Fat, Really?

Not all fat is created equal and to understand what belly fat truly is, you have to first understand what two types of fats make up the so-called “belly fat.”

First, there is subcutaneous fat which is fat that lies just underneath the skin.

Second, there is visceral fat. This type of fat that lies in the spaces between the abdominal organs.

In case you have not gotten the memo, excess visceral fat is more harmful to your body than subcutaneous fat and is one of the leading causes of a wide variety of health problems.

Excess stress, poor diet, and lack of exercise are directly linked to the cause of belly fat.

Did you know that walking for more than 45 minutes at a brisk pace will help your body burn stored fat (Richard Fogoros, MD)

Spoiler Alert: Many studies have shown that drinking beer (not in excess) have not increased a person’s overall BMI. So in short, belly fat is just that; excess fat that is stored between your abdominal organs and just underneath the skin and is caused by too much bad and not enough good.

Beer & its Bad Rap

Let’s face it, drinking beer has always had a bad rap even going back to the 1920s (hence the prohibition movement). Why is this bad rap you ask? Well, given the number of drunk drivers killing innocent people, the bad hangovers that lead to the lack of any productivity, and the countless horrible acts committed by individuals that have been drinking “beer,” it’s not hard to see why beer has been the scapegoat.

Blaming our bad decisions and ill behavior on beer is easier for us to do than to take responsibility for our own actions.

Yep, that’s right, I said Scapegoat because beer is always blamed for bad behavior when, in reality, it is the individuals’ decision-making that leads to bad behavior. Sure, alcohol in general lowers a person’s inhibitions and can impair their decision-making but before one takes even a sip, they know what they can handle or cannot handle.

Drinking beer does not make you a serial killer anymore than it contributes directly to your obesity. However, factors like genetics, your diet, and discipline do.

Blaming our bad decisions and ill behavior on beer is easier for us to do than to take responsibility for our own actions.

We as humans need a reason for why things are the way they are. Saying our growing belly fat is due to those 4 craft beers we had a week ago, is a hell of a lot easier than accepting that it might be the pizza, and the donuts you indulged in while binge-watching “The Walking Dead” for days on end.

Beer, Calories & Carbs

As I just mentioned, beer alone is not the culprit to your weight gain. However, beer has been referred to as empty calories (food with little to no nutritional value), although we have learned that is not always the case.

Certain beers like craft brews (sadly), pack more calories than watered-down beers (subjectively speaking) like Michelob Ultra.

For example, wheat beers, especially craft wheat brews, are my all-time favorites. However, beers like Blue Moon come with 170 calories per 12 oz and I’m usually a 20-ouncer-at-a-time kinda gal. Not to mention that I love my carbs like pasta and pizza as I guzzle down a cold brew (yum, now I’m hungry).

I know there are seasoned beer drinkers like my hubs Liam, that don’t get the munchies while enjoying a beer because that is his meal. However, there are many that will typically down a beer alongside a juicy burger or the fan-favorite hot wings.

When you add up the calories of a couple of beers and choice of junk food, you will likely get more than your daily caloric allowance.

The Balancing Act of Drinking Beer

Liam and I absolutely LOVE our beer and equally adore a fit life. I know many naysayers out there believe that there is no possible way to drink beer on a regular basis and maintain a healthy lifestyle. They have a right to their own opionon.

For us, drinking beer is a balancing act. If I want to continue to lose weight, I have to definitely workout in the mornings before Beer Thirty arrives. Additionally, I have to be mindful of the calories I intake with my beer and food (Hello Michelob Ultra). 

Likewise, I can’t drink a crap ton of beer and move on to vodka because that will lead to a lot of bad decisions and a wicked hangover. You have to know yourself and your limits if you want to enjoy adult libations. Not every person’s genetic makeup allows for alcoholic beverages. If yours does, well then, pick your battles and walk that tightrope with an ice-cold beer in hand (without the burger in the other).

The Conclusion – Does Beer Cause Belly Fat

Well, there you have it; drinking beer does NOT cause belly fat in of itself. In case you are impatient like me and just skipped to this part of the article here is what you missed. Belly fat consists of visceral fat and subcutaneous fat which is caused by your stress level, poor diet, and lack of exercise. Beer alone is not the culprit for your bad decisions and/or weight gain and there is a balancing act for drinking beer and staying fit. That balancing act is understanding calories in beers, your daily caloric allowance, the food you choose to indulge in, and the best way to rid yourself of stored fat.

So drink up buttercup! Maybe even a lager. Visit What’s in Lager – The Beer You Never Knew to learn more!

6 thoughts on “Does Beer Cause Belly Fat – Truth Be Told

  1. Your explanation is really good and all in all, I feel you for a very good job to put justice I’m what causes belly fat. I personally think that a person who consumes a lot of beer must definitely also consumes a whole lot of different foods that have calories which might be the cause in mixture with beer to cause the fat in their belly.

    1. Hi Suz! Yep it is not just beer alone that causes belly fat and I want to help others who are afraid of drinking beer for that reason to be informed. Thanks for your comment!

  2. Hello Kiera, thanks for this really nice article. I have to say that I’m impressed with how you’ve dealt with this article. I have heard a lot of people say they wouldn’t take beer because they fear it causes belly fat and I have to say its nice that you have given all there clarity that I need. I’ll share with them as well.

    1. Thanks Justin! We love our beer and I am living proof that you can maintain a fit lifestyle and drink a cold one or 4, ha!

  3. First of all, since I consume beer myself and I know a couple of friends who like this drink, I can say that I’m not sure that beer enlarges the Belly Fat. Everyone who uses it in normal quantities has no problem with obesity and the like. I know that beer has good ingredients, like good calories, and that it affects the normal functioning of the urinary tract.

    Of course, your conclusion also indicates that beer does not cause, so it means a lot to me. Yet now I have some evidence for that, don’t I?

    1. Hi Oliveir, thanks for your reply. You sure do have the evidence you need. Just send your non-believers over to our site and we will set them straight LOL. I am a total muchie head when it comes to drinking craft beer so I am well aware that it is the countless chips and not so much the beer that add to my waist line. Beer definitely has health benefits, which is what we are going to write about very soon!


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