Reading time: 2 minutesPublished: October 6, 2018
Can quitting alcohol make you healthier and happier?
Many of us have signed up for Sober October in aid of Macmillan Cancer where we’ll be pledging to remain alcohol free for 31 days. So what better time to talk about alcohol than this month.
We'd all like to know the answer to this question. Can quitting alcohol make you healthier and happier? In this article I take a quick look at all the benefits you’ll get from giving alcohol the boot for a month.
If the idea of going cold turkey for a whole month sounds horrendous maybe the following reasons will persuade you.
Did you realise that one in 8 young adults now doesn’t drink alcohol so you’ll be in good company.
Not drinking alcohol means you’ll get lots of benefits for you mind and body. Take a look at my top 6 reasons below.
1) First up you’ll sleep better. Following a few bevvies you’ll get an unmistakable fatigue because getting a solid night’s sleep is tricky with too much alcohol inside you. Alcohol interrupts your normal sleep pattern, so waking up after a few hours or feeling exhausted the next day is common. If you can take a break from alcohol you will be able to get better-quality sleep which ultimately gives you more energy.
2) You’ll find new levels of motivation. Whether that’s for work, training at the gym or anything else. A hangover can write off the whole day and leave you feeling lazy, lethargic and absolutely not wanting to do anything other than pull the duvet over your head and lie on the sofa watching movies all day.
3) You’ll raise your mood. Alcohol is a depressant. Hangover blues are caused by a direct effect of alcohol on your brain chemistry. So drinking just one might be OK but pretty soon the alcohol will betray you by interfering with neurotransmitters in your head. It will even reduce your levels of happiness-boosting serotonin. And that’s not good!
4) Alcohol robs your skin and body of moisture. Alcohol is a toxin that makes you go to the loo more often. It also makes your kidneys work harder and your liver has to go into overtime to break it down. This leads to dehydration, which can cause dry, flaky skin. This leads to older looking skin, so you dry up from the inside out. Not pleasant.
5) Your cravings will be under control. Alcohol plays havoc with your blood sugar levels, which causes your body to crave sugar and starchy foods. Staying off the booze will give you a much better chance of making healthier food choices. Your waistline will benefit from making healthier food choices.
6) Your immune system will benefit and as temperatures begin to drop we need all the help we can get to keep autumn illnesses at bay. Studies have shown that alcohol is toxic to immune system cells called dendritic cells. These cells play a critical role in immune function, responding to danger signals by searching for unfamiliar antigens within the body. Our cells need support to get stronger to help us ward off seasonal illnesses.
So, are you convinced that quitting alcohol can make you healthier and happier? Why not give it a try and let us know how you get on. It’s only for the month and you’ll be amazed now much better you can feel.
Written by: Mimi