The start of a new year usually means a major part of the population is setting new health resolutions – i.e., fitness studios and gyms are crowded, social media is filled with photos of green juice, and your friends are opting to stay in more than usual.
Here at Integrative Nutrition, we believe that goals can be set and achieved throughout the year, not just at the beginning. Paying more attention to improving your health by eating healthier, being more active, and investing extra time in self-care are all great starts to positive change. While many New Year’s resolutions are set with good intentions, nearly 80 percent end up dwindling by February because of the unexpected demand that comes with them.
Instead of focusing on goals that require you to overstress about a complete life shift, take small steps that can lead to long-term change, like participating in Dry January and cutting out alcohol for the month. Dry January is a temporary adjustment that only requires one month dedicated to not drinking alcohol. It originally started in London as a government-sponsored movement to ditch the booze and raise money for charity, but it picked up steam when people began to realize the benefits. Dry January may be intended for just one month, but the results of a sober month can influence goals indefinitely.
So how exactly is a month free from any alcohol beneficial for you? Here are three ways nixing the drinks can improve your life!
Lose weight. Alcohol consumption and weight gain go hand in hand. If you’re looking to shed a few pounds, avoiding alcoholic beverages can be your first step to making progress. Beer, liquor, and mixed drinks provide your body with calories but minimal nutrients. These drinks are typically high in simple sugars and calories that lead to weight gain and fat storage. Not to mention the urge to eat that comes from being intoxicated!
Save money. It’s no secret that alcohol isn’t always cheap, especially when at bars and restaurants. Instead of spending money on alcohol, you’ll have extra funds to do other things you enjoy! Think yoga classes, matcha lattes, and those leggings you’ve had your eye on.
Feel mentally clearer and physically stronger. Alcohol can make you feel weak and moody because of dropping blood sugar levels, and it prevents you from hitting those deep stages of sleep that are required for full brain function. Removing alcohol from your diet not only improves your internal system, including your organs and digestive system, it can also reduce unwanted brain fog and promote clear skin. Skipping the booze will have your body feeling more energized and less sluggish
Have you participated in Dry January before? Tell us how you benefited in the comments below!
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