As the festive season comes to an end & everyone has drank probably more champagne than they would like to admit, more and more people seem to be jumping on the “Dry January Train” where you avoid drinking any booze for the entire month. Some do it as a way to detox from the excessive drinking over the holidays while others make it part of a New Year’s resolution to drink less. Either way, giving up booze or limiting the amount you drink can have amazing health benefits on your mind and body. This is because alcohol puts metabolic stress on the liver, raises blood pressure and can also weaken your immune system among many other health problems. (most dependant on how much you drink).
Here are some of the health benefits of having a Dry January:
1.) Better Sleep – Alcohol disrupts the quality of sleep as it decreases “Restorative REM Sleep” reducing the amount of time spent in a deep sleep.
2.) Your waistline may shrink – Boozy beverages are high in calories. So having a few drinks a day can increase your calorific intake which often makes you put on excess weight. Alcohol also wreaks havoc on your blood sugar levels causing your body to crave salty, greasy, sugary and starchy foods.
3.) Improved Concentration and Mood – Alcohol has many different effects on your mental health. It can increase your risk of anxiety and depression because it depletes your brains serotonin levels. It also depresses the central nervous system which can make your mood fluctuate.
4.) Better Skin – Alcohol is extremely dehydrating and can leave your skin looking dry and sallow. It can also deplete vitamins and minerals that are essential for healthy skin.
5.) May change your attitude towards alcohol – Studies have shown that 64% of people who participated in Dry January drank less alcohol even 6 months after they finished.
The important thing is to continue healthy drinking habits beyond January. Studies have shown for optimum health, people should be drinking within the recommended low risk alcohol guidelines across the whole year which means that men and women are advised not to drink more than 14 units per week on a regular basis.