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How Quitting Drinking Has Changed My Physical & Mental Health

Image by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash
 
Originally published on readunwritten.com

A few months ago, I decided to make a major lifestyle change. I didn’t have a revelation or a lightbulb moment, just a subtle realization that a certain adult habit was impacting my physical and mental health. 

That’s right: I decided to go sober. 

Although I didn’t have a “drinking problem,” ingesting alcohol constantly caused horrible stomach pains and splitting headaches. I figured this was my body’s way of telling me to stop, so I finally decided to listen. 

I felt physically and mentally better almost immediately. Alcohol alters your mind. When you stop drinking, your mind feels much sharper and clear. After all, there’s a reason why people do stupid things while drinking. When you remove alcohol from your life, you experience fewer mood swings and feel more emotionally balanced.

The physical changes were obvious almost immediately as well. My skin cleared up instantly, which boosted my self-esteem. I always had small breakouts, but they were definitely worse when alcohol was in my system. In addition, I felt less bloated and even started to lose weight!

About a week after I went sober, I felt more energized during the day and slept better at night. Some glasses of wine contain hundreds of calories, so removing this influx of calories meant my body no longer worked overtime all night to digest it. My body was able to fully rest, and I so desperately needed that. Restful sleep reduced my mood swings and improved my concentration drastically.

As much as I loved my nightly glass of wine after work, I realized I could find much healthier coping mechanisms. I could walk, take an exercise class, write, or do any number of other activities. Besides all of the wonderful physical and mental changes I’ve experienced since I stopped drinking, my bank account also seems grateful. You never realize how much money you’re spending on alcohol until you give it up.

I’m not saying the sober life is better than a life with alcohol, but it has drastically improved my life. I encourage anyone who is looking for a positive lifestyle change to consider giving up alcohol. It just may help you focus on living a happier, healthier life.

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