Dry January…What's in it for me?

The facts about what a month off booze does to your body

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Last year, 5 million people took part in Dry January, (an initiative backed by Alcohol Concern) to go booze-free for a month. Alcohol Concern say ‘’Dry January enables you to take control of your relationship with alcohol and drive a conversation about drinking.’’

So what's in it for me?

In 2013, an experiment conducted by New Scientist staff with the Institute for Liver and Digestive Health at University College London Medical School (UCLMS) showed marked differences in the condition of those who abstained from alcohol for five weeks.

All the participants considered themselves to be “normal” drinkers. Before the test, the women had been drinking an average of 29 units a week, or four units a day, and the men typically drank 31 units. Both are above government guidelines, but not dramatically so.

In the test, 10 people drank no alcohol while four continued as normal. There were no significant changes in any of the parameters measured for the four people who didn’t give up alcohol. But the changes were “dramatic and consistent” across all 10 abstainers.

They included:

·        Liver fat fell by upto 20 per cent in some individuals. Fat accumulation on the liver is a known prelude to liver damage

·        Blood glucose levels dropped by 16 per cent on average

·        Total blood cholesterol, a risk factor for heart disease, dropped by almost 5 per cent

·        Ratings of sleep quality rose by just over 10 per cent

Speaking about the experiment, Kevin Moore, consultant in liver health services at UCLMS, said: “What you have is a pretty average group of British people who would not consider themselves heavy drinkers, yet stopping drinking for a month alters liver fat, cholesterol and blood sugar, and helps them lose weight. If someone had a health product that did all that in one month, they would be raking it in.

Interesting! FitBeer aren’t ‘raking it in' (YET), but we do have an award-winning beer that’s low calorie, and booze-free. You don't have to order orange juice or just drink water at the bar or at home. You can enjoy the subtle hops and complex flavours of our beer, and get all the benefits of going alcohol-free! Here's a list of places you can find FitBeer near you, or just order a case from us here

 

Loose Weight

How do the calories in a FitBeer compare with other food and drink?

FitBeer is a low calorie, dealcoholised option. As you can see from the chart below, a bottle of FitBeer has less calories than an apple,  well under half the calories of a pint of beer and three times less than a large glass of wine. Drinking FitBeer for a few weeks instead of beer and wine will help you loose weight as well as give you more energy. Did you know that FitBeer is also an isotonic drink. It works like a natural energy drink, replacing minerals and salts.  It's made from 100% natural ingredients, only barley, hops , yeast and water. Why not try it instead of a sugary tea or coffee after work, or if you're feeling brave, drink one on your commute to work instead of  that caffeine-filled, sugary energy drink!

 
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 Image coutesey of the BBC

Image coutesey of the BBC

 

Better Sleep & More energy

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In a separate study that Dr Richard de Visser, from the University of Sussex, carried out with 857 British adults taking part in Dry January showed that after going for a month without alcohol, 62% of those in the study said they had better sleep. 

Drinking can also makes you more likely to snore because it relaxes the tissues in your throat. Everyone knows that going to bed after a drink means you rarely sleep deeply and often wake up early feeling groggy and not fully rested. The benefit of a good night's sleep is that you have more energy!

Better Skin

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No need for a peer-reviewed study on this one. It goes without saying that booze isn’t good for your skin. Alcohol makes you dehydrated and the long term effects of drinking have a noticeable effect on how we look as we get older. Giving up, even for a short time, reinvigorates our skin. Why bother with daily face-masks...just try going booze free for a month and check out the results. 

If you want to learn more about Dry January, why not visit the official UK website here

Becky Kean