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The benefits of stopping for a bit

By Posted in Club Soda news

Alcohol – risks and effects

We all know (and feel) that excessive alcohol consumption is Not a Good Thing. Often it’s pretty obvious what impact alcohol is having. Other issues aren’t so obvious but could become problematic with long-term use.

In today’s post we review the longer-term effects and risks of alcohol on the body and brain, and then talk about the benefits of stopping drinking for a bit.

Physical health impact and risks of heavy alcohol use

Excessive alcohol consumption has been linked to increased risk of more than 60 diseases and health problems – here are a few:

Mental and emotional health impact and risks of heavy alcohol use

The benefits of stopping drinking for a bit

According to DrinkAware “taking regular breaks from alcohol is the best way to lower your risk of becoming dependent on it”.

But this isn’t the only reason to take an alcohol holiday, as 14 staff at the New Scientist found when they took a ‘liver vacation’ one January.

Ten of them stopped drinking for 5 weeks, and the other four continued to drink as usual. Doctors took blood samples and gave them ultrasounds to measure the amount of fat in their livers before and after. Here’s what changed:

Benefits of taking a Month off Booze

If someone had a health product that did all that in one month, they would be raking it in.”

Kevin Moore, consultant in Liver Health Services
University College London Medical School

On a side note, the 10 people who took a liver vacation did say that the only downside was that they were less sociable during the 5 weeks. The beauty of doing a Sober Sprint is that you can join a large community of like-minded people at Club Soda, many of whom are taking a Month Off Booze by doing a Sober Sprint too, so you don’t have to isolate yourself (unless you want to). We also have information and advice on new ways and and places to socialise, and enjoy no-alcohol or dealcoholised drinks, etc.

A Sober Sprint is your n=me personal experiment where you can measure your progress and changes in areas of well-being, productivity, and physical health and see what an alcohol-holiday does for you. We will use the information we gather from the progress updates from Club Soda Sober Sprints (only at aggregate level and anonymously) to produce our own infographics like the one above, so we can see just what a month off booze does for our community.

Note – taking a month off will definitely be good for you in many ways but in the longer term we hope you can use your Sober Sprint to reflect upon and adjust your overall relationship with alcohol – if this is something you would like to do. Going on a huge bender/binge on 1st of next month or generally reverting back to heavy regular drinking will undermine the good work of your Sober Sprint! We continue the Sober Sprint emails for a couple of days after your month is over, to encourage you to take some time to reflect on your longer-term goals.

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