5 Reasons You Should Quit Drinking Alcohol

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Before I get into detail about the reasons you should quit drinking alcohol, I want to point out that I'm not saying you should never touch a glass ever again. I stopped drinking over a year ago and, while I rarely grab an alcoholic beverage, I do indulge in the occasional bloody mary or glass of wine. This article is more to showcase why you should reduce your alcoholic intake. Out of all the reasons, I chose to quit drinking because I did not particularly appreciate how it made me feel.

We all know what I'm talking about here. You go out and have several drinks followed by a couple of shots and drunkenly get into your bed. The room is spinning, and the urge to vomit is seconds away. After finally passing out, you wake up the next morning tired, dehydrated, and sick to your stomach. Just thinking about this makes me feel ill. Most of us don't like this feeling, yet we choose to refill our drink anyways because we are out with friends and YOLO.

No matter what the reason is behind that drink, I can assure you that your life will completely change if you drastically reduce your intake. Since quitting, I have found myself more productive, energized, and I have the same amount of fun going out (if not more). If you are even thinking about making a change, these reasons will help ensure you are making the right choice. It might seem complicated, but I can assure you that quitting will make you feel better than ever before.

You'll save money.
Having a drinking habit is not cheap, no matter how often you go out. In my early twenties, I would go out with my friends at least three times a week. Not necessarily because I wanted to, but because our small town didn't have much to do except go to bars. While there were times people would buy us drinks or shots, we mostly paid for them ourselves. Depending on your beverage of choice, you could be spending up to $10 per glass. That gets pricey fast. Not to mention, the more you have to drink, the less you care about the amount your spending.

Even if you are a gal or pal that drinks at home, that can equally add up. We usually split the price in half for a pack of beer or a couple of bottles of wine. While it was incredibly cheaper than going out, it still would add up depending on how many people were drinking with us. Once I significantly reduced my drinking intake, I noticed that I had more money to spend on other things I needed. I don't mean you can't go out and enjoy time with your friends though. Now, if I go out to the bars, I'll grab one drink and then sip on water for a while. This method keeps me hydrated, maintains a glass in my hand, and reduces the amount of alcohol I'm purchasing.

You'll feel better mentally and physically.
This point is an apparent reason for quitting alcohol. When you consume alcoholic beverages, you are affecting your heart, liver, brain, and other organs in your body. Drinking too much in one sitting can numb the mind, cause it to go crazy trying to normalize, force your liver to work overtime, and make your heart and lungs pump erratically. If this isn't bad enough for you, it can also give you flu-like symptoms the next day (and even days afterward).

Alcohol can also mess with your mental state. Have you ever tried to work hungover? It is never enjoyable for anyone. You feel tired, unproductive, and want to bury your head in a pillow. You feel this way because alcohol makes it difficult to make decisions, and being a depressant, can fill you up with shame and guilt. With your body trying to delete all the toxins you put into your body, it doesn't have much time to do what it is meant to do. After just two weeks of quitting, I felt myself feeling more productive, energized, and happy all around.

If none of this is getting you to put that drink down, know that quitting alcohol can also help reduce weight. When you drink those sugary beverages, you are loading your body with calories. Not to mention, we usually get the munchies after drinking an entire night. With your mind not functioning correctly, you choose foods that are unhealthy and portion sizes that are two sizes too big. You know how grease helps cure a hangover? It also adds fat to your body and clogs your arteries. Without alcohol in the picture, you are more likely to make better health decisions, and you'll no longer drink your calories.

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You will get a better nights sleep.
Without realizing it, alcohol can affect your sleep (and not in a good way). I know it might seem like a strange reason since alcohol is a depressant that usually makes us feel sleepy within the first drink. However, the substance triggers different activity in the brain that makes it difficult for a drunk person to get a deep sleep. What if I have quit, but I can't correctly fall asleep? Just like any other additive, your body goes through a withdrawal phase.

Even if you are not a heavy drinker, those first few days or weeks can be hard on the body. This effect happens because your system is well acquainted with getting a substance that it is no longer taking in. This side effect isn't a bad thing but does take a while for the body to normalize. Over time your body will get back to its natural state, and you will be able to tell the difference in your sleep cycles.

Stop being dehydrated and look younger longer.
Yes, alcohol does in fact age you over time. Since alcohol is a diuretic, it dehydrates the body and skin. When you keep reaching for another glass instead of opting out for water, you are putting your body into a dehydrated state. Over time, this can dry out the skin and reduce its elasticity. It can also make the skin red and inflamed. Once the alcohol has left your body, this factor usually goes away. However, the longer you drink, the more chance you have of this inflammation damaging your skin permanently.

Over time, this constant dehydration will start to show on your skin. We need hydration to keep our skin elastic, produce healthy collagen levels, and give us that glow. Without it, your body will start to dry out and create premature wrinkling. In some cases (when you are drinking way too much for your body), it can even lead to jaundice. Jaundice happens when the liver can no longer process the toxins you are putting into it. Those toxins will start to seep into your bloodstream and lead to yellowing of your skin and eyes.

Your connections will grow.
Believe it or not, you will make better friendships when you stop drinking. I used to think it was the other way around. All of my friends loved going out and, since I wanted to be close with them, I would join them. Personally, I never genuinely had a good time. Drinking always made me feel sick to my stomach, blur my senses, and have me worrying about how we would get home or the decisions we would make. After I quit, I started feeling better and making healthier choices for myself. While I lost a few friends in the process, I gained connections that will last a lifetime.

If you are with people who are constantly pressuring you to go out, they might not be the right fit. You shouldn't have to get drunk to be a decent friend. When you are sober and healthy, you'll notice that those people might not be the right fit for you. I now have a small group of friends and loved ones that help me grow and vice versa. We have a blast and never have to touch a drink to get to that point.

Depending on how much you drink, you could also be harming loved ones you have in your life. Getting drunk each night and being a liability could ruin friendships without you realizing it. No one likes someone who can't remember what he or she did the night before or who is regularly hungover and sleeps all day long. You might think you are not as much fun without alcohol, but I can assure you that is never the case (you are just too drunk to see it).

No matter what your reasoning is, quitting this habit will be the best thing for you. Since I've stopped, I started working towards my dreams, connecting with my family and friends, and lead a healthier more meaningful life. I still indulge in a bloody mary every now and again, but I never have more than one or two drinks in a sitting. I used to have people get angry about this, and it would make me feel guilty for not indulging in more. However, I started to look at their reactions and wonder why they cared about me being drunk. No one should ever make you feel sorry for getting a glass of water over a vodka tonic. If that happens, they need to look long and hard at themselves instead of judging you for wanting to live a healthier lifestyle.


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