The effects of a month without alcohol
Are you putting the bottle down during “Dry January” or planning to take the 28 Days Without Alcohol Challenge? Here are the positive impacts on your body.
1. Improved liver health
After a month without alcohol, we notice:
- a drop of 28% insulin resistance (a measure used to calculate diabetes risk);
- 12.5%reduction in liver stiffness (an indicator of certain chronic diseases).
Alcohol is one of the most common causes of liver disease, such as cirrhosis and alcoholic hepatitis. The reason? Ethanol, a substance in alcohol, causes damage to liver cells.
Sources: University College London and Royal Free Hospital study (2015); World Health Organization.
2. Better cardio
After a month without alcohol,
- blood pressure improves;
- cholesterol levels and the risk of developing heart disease are also reduced.
- in men, alcohol is linked to more than 10%cases of high blood pressure.
Sources: study by University College London and from the Royal Free Hospital (2015); World Health Organization; British Journal of General Practice.
3. Weight loss
No! A glass of wine is not equal to a glass of water.
- Average consumption counts 100 to 150 calories (3 glasses exceed the calorie equivalent of a hamburger at McDonald's (240 calories);
- 3 kg< /strong>: average weight lost after one month without alcohol.
Sources: Study of University College London & Royal Free Hospital (2015);Harvard School of Public Health.
4. Radiant Skin
- After a month-long alcohol-free challenge, 54%of people report having better looking skin.
- This is due to the components of the alcohol that cause inflammation of body tissues and dehydration of the skin, which can cause redness and acne.
Source: ;Sussex University study (2019).
5. Smental health improved
After a month without alcohol,
- 57% of people report having better concentration;
- 67% say they have more energy and 71% say they sleep better.
The reason? Alcohol is a psychotropic with effects on the areas of judgment in the brain. It also increases depression and anxiety.
- the chances of committing suicide are 7 times greater after drinking alcohol;
- Alcohol is also associated with problems of violence, aggression and sexual assault.  ;
Sources: Sussex University Study (2019); World Health Organization; British Journal of General Practice.
6. Awareness of consumption  ;
After one month without alcohol:
- 82%of people say they think more about their relationship with alcohol;
- 80% feel more in control when they drink;
- 76%learn more about why they drink and when;
- 93% have a feeling of personal accomplishment;
- 71% realize that they don't need alcohol to experience pleasure.
Source: study by the University of Sussex (2019).
Beware of the rebound effect!
< p>Despite everything, you still have to be careful with this type of challenge.
According to Éduc’alcool, occasional alcohol deprivation can create a “feeling of loss of income”. Much like with a diet, you may feel like congratulating yourself by consuming the “forbidden fruit” once the challenge is complete. Results? Alcohol consumption can increase the following month and exceed the moderation standards conveyed by Educ’alcohol, thus negating the benefits of the break.
Are you dependent? Yes, if…
- your use is causing problems around you or in your daily life;
- you notice significant changes in your mood;
- you are experiencing withdrawal symptoms (physical dependence);
- you use to feel better, to relax or to overcome your problems ;
- you feel cravings when you stop drinking.
Sources: Center for Addiction and Mental Health ( CAMH); Government of Quebec, Éduc'alcool.
Who is 100% sober?
- Worldwide: 56% of adults
- In Canada: 35.5% of adults
Source: World Health Organization ;(2016).