The festive season is the perfect excuse for letting your hair down and overindulging, including in alcohol. So, after many alcohol infused celebrations, many people take part in Dry January in an attempt to improve their health, but is it really worth it?
What is Dry January?
Dry January is annual month-long event that takes place in the UK with the aim of helping millions of people reset their relationship with alcohol. It is run by the charity Alcohol Change UK and there’s just one rule, no alcohol from New Year’s Day until 1st February.
Dry January is a great time to cut down your alcohol intake, reduce your waistline, avoid those pesky hangovers, and save some money. In the long term, it can also reset your relationship with alcohol and help you to have a healthier relationship with it all year round.
Does it work?
According to the charity, Alcohol Change, 72% of people who complete Dry January, have a less risky relationship with alcohol 6 months later.
Is it worth it?
There’s no doubt about it, Dry January can be tough, especially for the first few weeks. If you’re used to enjoying alcohol on a regular basis, you may find you miss it or the social aspects of it. A good way to help keep you motivated is to tell people what you are doing, so they can offer you moral support. You may even find that those close to you join you on the challenge.
One of the major disadvantages of alcohol is its effect on your health. Regularly drinking over 14 units per week increases your risk of dying by 1%. When you put that into context, sitting watching TV for more than hour a day or eating lots of bacon sandwiches in a week is more harmful. But long-term alcohol increases your risk of chronic disease.
And it’s not just liver disease. Alcohol increases the risk of prostate cancer in men and breast cancer in women. So, giving your body a rest from alcohol can be beneficial for your health. That doesn’t mean you have to give up forever, just abstaining during January or having dry days throughout the week are helpful.
Research shows that after just 30 days of avoiding alcohol, insulin response, blood pressure and weight all improve. So, giving up alcohol for just one month can make vast improvements to your health.
But it’s not just your health that benefits from abstinence, your pocket does, too. Alcohol can be expensive, especially on a night out. By abstaining, you will be saving money which you could put towards something you’ve been wanting for a while or you could donate to charity.
You may find it difficult at first but there are numerous advantages to steering clear of alcohol for a month. Why not invest in a Hydratem8 tracker bottle to improve your hydration and give you something else to focus on, all the while increasing your water intake? Our bottles are designed to help you meet hydration targets throughout the day which will have several further benefits for your health including improving your concentration and mood.