What Happens When You Stop Drinking For 90 Days
Written by: Kavata Kithome
As you may know, I recently went through a transformation where my relationship with food was restored to a healthy place. During this transformation, I stopped what seemed like everything that was bad for me and delicious. You know the usual suspects of the SAD (Standard American Diet) diet: sugar, caffeine, gluten and soy.
But I also had to let go of something that I absolutely love, can you guess what it is?
I would reach for this drink every evening to help me relax after a hard day of work. By now you have probably guessed it…
Wine. My favorite was pinot noir.
I loved pouring myself a glass of pinot noir (the bigger the better) and sinking into the couch, savouring its wonderful aroma. By the time I began my transformation, you could say I had started to feel like I needed that glass of wine to keep me sane. I always considered myself as a moderate drinker and I never had more than a glass, but the fact that I felt like I needed the glass every night was problematic.
As a Transformational Health Coach, I am conscious of my habits and I’ve never really had an “unhealthy dependency” on food or drinks. Reaching for a glass of wine this frequently meant that there was a need that was not being met.
Now as you can imagine, when Coach Paula told me to stay away from any alcohol for the duration of the program, I panicked. My silent question to her was “so I have to keep showing up in my life while doing the program too, how will I survive? I mean what is wrong with just one glass? Besides, red wine is full of antioxidants and ‘they’ say it is healthy to have one glass.”
But I had leaky gut syndrome and my relationship with food was subpar, so I was willing to give it a try! I made up my mind to completely remove wine from my life for 90 days.
What Happened When I Gave Up Wine For 90 Days
1. My Sugar Cravings Went Away
The truth of the matter is that as good as it is for you, red wine is high in sugar. As you may know, sugar raises your insulin levels and can make you crave more of the sweet stuff.
I was not the biggest sweet-eater, but would crave it once in awhile, especially after an intense workout. I often had my glass of wine with a square of dark chocolate as my little nighttime ritual. Once I stopped drinking it, I stopped craving the chocolate. My mind was blown!
2. I Slept Better
Here is another secret: before I began my transformation, I barely slept well, if at all. So I used wine as my Ambien. But contrary to popular belief, a glass of wine or alcohol does not help you get a good night’s sleep. In my experience, my glass of wine initially helped me fall asleep, but I found myself waking up within a few hours, which left me with lower-quality sleep overall.
Research has shown that alcohol reduces the amount of time you spend in a REM state and suppresses breathing, which can lead to sleep apnea.
After about 3 weeks into my transformation, the time I spent sleeping was much deeper and I woke up more refreshed. This meant I was more productive when I was awake! BONUS!
3. My Muscular Functions Improved
Here’s the truth about alcohol, it disrupts performance. This is because it is a diuretic and it can impair muscle growth, dehydrate the body, prevent muscle recovery and deplete your energy.
When I stopped drinking my nightly glass of noir, I noticed I had more endurance on the walks and had more strength when practicing yoga. This left me feeling like a champion for sure.
4. I Lost Weight
So, it is important for me to say that my overall transformation helped me lose weight. Moreover, admittedly at the beginning of my program, I did cheat and indulged in a glass of wine. However, once I cut it out, I noticed that my mid-section seemed trimmer. That was another great bonus for me that really encouraged me to keep going without for the duration of my program.
What I Drank Instead
I would be remissed if I didn’t share with you what I did instead of my wine, because to tell you the truth, it was not easy for me to let go of it.
Instead of reaching for a glass of wine, I reached for my now most favorite herbal tea. It is called Calming tea by Yogi. This tea is a chamomile-based blend and has a few remarkable additions such as gotu kola and licorice. The tea is delightfully sweet with soft notes of herbal and a floral undertone. You should definitely try it!
Since my transformation, I have partaken in an occasional glass. However, the moral of this story is that there are plenty of ways to reduce stress at the end of the day and I really do feel clearer and cleaner on the nights when I do not drink.
Can you relate to my story? Please share your experience in the comments below.
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Kavata Kithome is an advocate for living your best life, full of health and longevity. While working closely with gym owners and personal trainers, she was able to sculpt a well-rounded view of fitness and understands how to incorporate it with a healthy balanced diet. She is a regular contributor to the One More Step Lifestyle brand.
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