With Christmas over and the New Year upon us, hundreds of people across the country are giving up the drink and embracing Dry January. In 2016 an astonishing 16% of the adult population attempted to go dry in January. That’s 1 in 6 Britons! I may not be brave enough to bin the booze but I’m keen to find out how it all started.
Back in 2011, Emily Robinson decided to abstain from alcohol as preparation for her first half marathon in February. In doing so she managed to lose weight, sleep better and gain more energy. In addition to the health benefits, her booze free month became a hot topic. People found it interesting and wanted to know what it was like.
A year later in 2012 Emily joined Alcohol Concern, the charity behind the Dry January campaign. Once again she decided to give the hard stuff a swerve, this time gaining the interest of even more people. Folks were starting to take on board the benefits of giving your body a break from booze. This got the charity thinking. Would people be inclined to drink less after taking a break, if they experienced the benefits? With that in mind the Dry January campaign was born.
Fast forward four years to 2016. What started as a small campaign, with no marketing budget has now grown on an impressive scale. In comparison to its first year, the campaign has gained over 37,000 likes on Facebook and over 3,500 followers on Twitter. It’s fair to say that it has really taken off, so why am I not taking part?
Everyone who knows me knows that I enjoy a glass of wine. I’d be lying if I said I don’t overindulge from time to time (the evidence is here) however I would always argue that the amount of alcohol I drink is not excessive. I enjoy a glass of wine in the evening, it’s my time to relax and unwind. I gave up alcohol while I was pregnant, I’ve already done my time. Why would I considering doing it again?
Well in all honesty until I sat down to write this post I didn’t know very much about Dry January. I’ve heard of it across social media but never really thought about the benefits it could have on my life. Everyone knows the negative impact drinking too much alcohol can have but we don’t seem to talk much about the positives of taking a break.
According to Health line, if you stop drinking alcohol for a month the benefits could include:
- Improved sleep
- Improved wakefulness
- Weight loss
- Improved performance at work
- Improved concentration
- Lower cholesterol
- Lower glucose levels
- Reduced liver fat
If like me you still have Christmas wine waiting to be drunk, why not push it right to the back of the cupboard? Dry January may have already started but we’re only 6 days in! There’s never a bad time to give the booze a break!
If you are concerned that you or someone you care about has a problem with alcohol please visit www.drinkaware.co.uk
Are you taking part in Dry January? Have you taken part in previous years? I’d love to hear the benefits it had for you
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