How to stop drinking

Introduction

Let’s be honest, alcohol can lead to bad decisions and bad outcomes for those who consume it, with it often leading to more negative impacts than benefits. While many believe that they are simply social drinkers and able to handle their alcohol, that does not necessarily mean that their body, mind and relationships are not being negatively impacted by it.

Alcohol is an incredibly addictive substance that is easy to obtain and difficult to stop once the addiction has taken hold. There are many reasons to stop drinking for good, but we’ve written about a few that might just convince you to stop.

There are many negative implications of alcohol. Firstly, it can negatively impact a person’s health-destroying their liver, damaging their skin and leading to an increased likelihood of developing heart disease.  Secondly, it can impact a person’s social life and relationships, causing arguments and the breakdown of friendships.

Family members can get hurt by the actions of a person under the influence leading to family breakdown. Finally, alcohol can lead to any individual making poor decisions such as getting into fights, taking other harmful substances or choosing to drink-drive, which is not only extremely dangerous but can also lead to loss of life. 

10 Reasons To Stop Drinking Alcohol For Good

Reasons to stop drinking alcohol - the monk mindset

1. Your Damaged Liver Will Start To Recover

If we think about the damage that alcohol does to the body, the first major impact would be on the liver. This is because the liver breaks down alcohol into a substance known as acetaldehyde, which is then broken into acetate, which the body can get rid of. Acetaldehyde is toxic to the body and can damage the liver and impact insulin levels. High levels of alcohol over a period of time can, in fact, damage liver cells so much that they cannot recover.

If a person stops before the damage is as extensive as this, however, the liver can repair itself at a rapid pace. This can happen as quickly as two days after you stop drinking in those who do not drink as much. For heavy drinkers, this may take longer, but there are still positive effects, leading to you feeling healthier. 

2. Over Time, You Will Save A Significant Amount Of Money

Let’s be honest – alcohol is expensive whether you are buying it from a supermarket, off-licence or pub, it will take up a significant portion of your budget. Those who stop drinking often document that one of the first things they notice is the increased amount of disposable income that they have. Stopping drinking will allow you to build your savings and invest in other areas of your life. 

If you do decide to quit, consider putting all the money you would spend on drink into a separate savings account or pot in order to track the positive impact that the decision has on your financial situation. 

3. You Will Have Better Sex and Sleep 

Quitting alcohol can also lead to a better experience in the bedroom with both better sleep and improved intimacy. Many believe that alcohol helps them get to sleep, and while this may be true, it has a negative impact on the quality of your sleep. This is because the sleep stage that we all benefit from is known as REM sleep, commonly known as restorative sleep.

It is at this stage of sleep where the body is able to heal and restore, boosting the immune system while healing and growing muscles and tissue. Additionally, alcohol can impact the quality of your sleep by causing your breathing to become more irregular and making you wake up to go to the bathroom more often, leading to disrupted sleep. 

A night of better sleep is known to increase levels of testosterone, and it is these testosterone levels that are linked to your sex drive. In men, it can lead to issues getting an erection, while in women, it can lead to dryness and discomfort. All of these factors can have a negative impact on a relationship and sexual performance. 

Quitting alcohol can therefore lead to you getting a better nights sleep and a better sex life – it’s really a win-win situation.  

4. Your Skin Will Be Clearer and More Radiant

As we already know, alcohol contains a large number of toxins that are absorbed into the body when consumed. Drinking alcohol regularly increases the toxins in the body, which can not only impact organs such as the liver but can also cause significant damage to the skin, making you appear older and leading to signs of premature ageing. Alcohol has also been linked to the development or increased severity of acne.

reasons to stop drinking alcohol - the monk mindset

This is because drinking alcohol can impact your blood sugar levels, which then have a negative impact on hormone levels within the body. It is these hormone levels that can worsen acne. Other side effects of alcohol on the skin include the development of broken capillaries on the face, loose and saggy skin and inflammation. Due to the liver damage that we mentioned above, the skin may also become jaundiced. 

Alcohol is also a known diuretic. This means that it leads to your body removing any extra fluid. Fluid, however, benefits the body by keeping it hydrated, and this includes the skin. Good, clear and glowing skin is underpinned by good hydration. Removing alcohol from your diet can, therefore, increase hydration which improves the texture and appearance of the skin. Over time, acne and inflammation will also reduce. 

Related Post: 12 Steps How To Be More Disciplined and Control Your Life

5. You Could Lose Weight

Many who are trying to lose weight often count calories in their food, cutting out high-calorie ingredients to try and become fitter.  Often, however, they see no positive effects, and this may be down to their alcohol consumption. Alcohol contains what nutrition experts call ‘empty calories’, meaning that the calories they contain are not offset by any positive benefits and have no nutritional content.

While you may not realise it, alcohol contains a high number of calories – for example, the average number of calories in a pint of beer is 180, which works out at 1/14th of the daily calorie intake for a man, or 1/11th for women.  Without these empty calories, you are much more likely to lose weight and keep it off. 

6. No More Hangovers

One of the worst feelings after drinking alcohol is waking up in the morning and learning that you have a hangover. Studies in the UK have shown that around 42% of workers have turned up to work with a hangover, impacting the UK economy by over £1 billion every year. It is during the hangover stage that many people decide to stop drinking as the symptoms of a hangover can be unbearable.

reasons to stop drinking alcohol

Hangovers decrease productivity and can lead to whole days being wasted. Additionally, hangovers can lead to an increase in negative emotions and have been known to impair decision making and planning skills. By cutting alcohol out of your life, you will wake up each morning feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the day. 

7. Can Improve The Symptoms Of Mental Illness

While alcohol is not the direct cause of any mental illness, it does have a negative impact on the mental health of many drinkers. Many people see drinking as an escape from their feelings of stress and anxiety, however, it exacerbates the problem.

Studies have shown that around one in four people in the UK has a mental illness, and around ¼ of those with an alcohol addiction receive treatment for a mental illness during their addiction. This can have a negative impact as alcohol is known as a depressant that can impact the chemicals of the brain, leading to low mood, negative feelings and a lack of motivation.

If a person decides to stop drinking alcohol, however, they will see an improvement in these negative feelings and may be able to cope with the symptoms of their mental illness in a better way. 

8. You Will Be At Less Risk Of Many Diseases

Many scientific studies have shown that drinking alcohol can increase the risk of many types of disease such as liver disease, heart disease, kidney disease and many types of cancer. Those who drink around double the recommended weekly allowance, for example, are twice as likely to be diagnosed with heart disease.

Drinking over time can cause permanent damage to these organs, which can end up being life-threatening. Cutting alcohol out before this stage can lead to the body beginning to heal itself or, at the very least, not being damaged any further. 

Alcohol is also commonly known to increase the likelihood of a number of different cancers. The most obvious is liver cancer due to the acute liver damage that the substance causes.  Additionally, there is an increased risk of colon, mouth, breast, oesophagus, throat and rectal cancer.

Studies into this reveal some shocking statistics – with men who drink over three drinks each day having over a 40% higher chance of being killed by cancer. Women who drink three drinks every week have a 15% higher chance of developing breast cancer, with this increasing by 10% for every extra drink per day. 

Quitting alcohol can reduce the chances of developing many types of cancer, which can improve your life expectancy and quality of life. 

9. You Will Increase In Confidence

Many people use alcohol to make them more confident and allow them to cope better with large social situations. However, it is important to recognise that this is simply fake confidence that can lead to a person being unaware of how they come across or if they are crossing any boundaries.

Think about the guy who uses drink to talk to women on a night out but does not understand the social cues that they are not interested in, or the girl who drinks to feel confident in what she is wearing that ends up drinking too much and spends the rest of her night on the toilet. Alcohol is being used in these situations as a comfort rather than a solution.

While quitting alcohol may appear quite daunting, it can lead to a person developing their true confidence over time, rather than relying on a drug and not being in control of their own actions. This will lead to increased feelings of self-worth and a renewed sense of self. 

10. You Will Make Better Decisions

When questioned, one of the biggest regrets that many drinkers have is the decisions that they make when under the influence. Often, friends and family members may be annoyed and angry due to things that were said and done when you have been drinking. Think about how many stupid decisions that you have made while drinking that you regret. Would you make these same decisions with a clear and sober mind? The answer is probably not.

If we look at more serious poor decisions. Research has shown that in around 50% of all serious trauma injuries, accidental drownings, accidental fires and murder, alcohol has been involved. Alcohol is also responsible for around 40% of fatal falls and traffic crashes. It is also a large factor in the number of suicides. This means that drinking may have serious consequences on yourself or the others around you. 

Reasons to stop drinking - the monk mindset

By quitting alcohol, not only would you not make these decisions in the first place, but you would also not have the alcohol-related guilt associated with realising what you have done after the fact. Studies have shown that even cutting back alcohol by around one third can lower injuries and accidents, so think how much of a positive impact cutting it out altogether can have. 

10 Reasons To Stop Drinking Alcohol

As you can see from our extensive list above, there are many benefits of quitting alcohol that vastly outweigh its benefits. Alcohol is an extremely addictive substance, but due to the fact that it is legal, many do not realise they have an addiction to it until it is too late. Cutting out alcohol can improve your physical health, mental health and your relationships with those around you. So why not take a leap of faith today?

You can do it. 

If you are struggling and would like to reach out for help, there are always options for you. NEVER think that there is no help. All you have to do is believe you can and you WILL.

Alcoholics Anonymous U.K

Alcoholics Anonymous U.S.A/Canada

Talk To Frank

Alcohol Addiction NHS (U.K)

Alcohol Addiction Explained – Healthline

Take a look at our Helplines page for more options.

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