Why Drinking Is Dangerous?
We all notice people around us consuming alcohol to the point where they are drunk and have no clue what is happening around them. I used to be one of them, and it was not a pleasant feeling.
Sometimes, I have woken up on a Sunday morning, remembering nothing of the excesses from Saturday night’s alcohol-filled parties. The CDC says that in 2016, 10,497 people died due to drunk driving. Once, when I was too drunk to see ahead of me, I almost hit a deer with my car.
We can argue that drinking and driving are not safe, but I want to tell you that alcohol itself can be harmful. You get distracted, your memory becomes weak, and you can even get addicted to it. And alcohol addiction is something that you cannot quickly get rid of. I have first-hand experience.
How Drinking Affects Your Health?
Drinking too much affects our physical, mental and emotional health all at the same time. For example, my drinking habits led me to deal with increasing digestive issues and high blood pressure. I even faced memory problems where I stopped remembering things that happened a few hours ago.
And then there was the considerable toll alcohol took on my mental health. Sometimes, I used to drink to avoid the pressures in my life. But, alcohol pushed me deeper into depression and anxiety. Unable to cope with that, I started drinking more. It’s a vicious cycle that you cannot afford to fall in.
Are these reasons not enough for you to stop drinking? Then let me tell you that drinking can cause other severe health issues:
- It increases our chances of getting cancer. Filtering alcohol makes our liver cells die. If we keep abusing alcohol, there will come a time when our liver cells will die faster than they can regenerate, leading to liver diseases like liver cirrhosis.
- The worst effect, I believe, is that alcohol weakens our immune system. If our immunity is low, we risk contracting all sorts of illnesses.
- Pregnant women with an addiction issue are at high risk of miscarriages, failed pregnancies, and stillbirth. We can engage in unprotected sexual activities under the influence of alcohol, leading to sexually transmitted diseases.
- I don’t think these are things any of us want in our life. So, it’s time we take alcohol abuse seriously and stop excessive drinking. Let me tell you about the changes I noticed in my life after I quit this unhealthy habit.
Positive Changes I Have Noticed After Quitting Alcohol
1. Stronger Immune System
I used to suffer from constant bouts of colds and pneumonia. It was much later that I found out what the reason was – my drinking habits. Did you know that alcohol consumption reduces our body’s capacity to produce white blood cells? These cells are responsible for building our immunity. When I quit alcohol, my immunity started improving, and I noticed that I stopped suffering from colds and coughs frequently.
2. Better Sleep Cycle
A good sleep cycle is one of the healthy habits to improve life. Alcohol abuse will inevitably mess up people’s sleep cycles. I used to think that drinking alcohol would help me fall asleep faster. Sadly, it only helped me pass out, and passing out is very different from restful sleep. Some nights, I would wake up with a start and be unable to go back to sleep for a long time. Quitting alcohol has helped me fix my sleep cycle and sleep better at night. I wake up rested, which has led to improved performance in every work I do.
3. Improved Digestion
Alcohol interferes with our body’s natural process of absorbing nutrients and digestion. As a result, I suffered from severe digestive and excretory issues. This caused discomfort for me and made my body weight function abnormally for the longest time. But, deciding to stop consuming alcohol and focusing on a better lifestyle was the best decision I ever took. Consequently, my digestion has improved, and I no longer feel uncomfortable eating the foods I love.
4. Healthier Weight
As I said, my weight malfunctioned for a long time when I was under the grasp of alcohol. Alcohol has high levels of calories, but it also messes with digestion. So, at times I would gain weight terribly, but then I would also lose it. My body could not take this torture. When I decided to quit alcohol, I also had to focus on a healthier lifestyle. Regularly exercising was one of the good habits I picked up along the way, and a healthier weight is one of the benefits of exercise.
5. Healthier Brain Function
There were times when I had difficulty remembering small things from my daily life. Later, I learned that it was because of excessive drinking, which affects our hippocampus – the seat of memory and cognitive function in our brain. Who wants to forget good memories to get momentary relief by consuming alcohol? So, I decided to quit alcohol, and now I have a youthful brain that functions better than before. I can think and react quicker, my attention has improved, and I also don’t forget things I should remember.
6. Reduced Depression and Anxiety
So many people have taken to drinking because they cannot deal with the increasing pressures of life. These people believe that alcohol can solve their mental illnesses, which is far from the truth. If anything, alcohol worsens things, causes more anxiety and depression, and forces you to drink more. Getting out of this vicious cycle has helped me regain my mental stability.
7. Improved Relationships with Friends and Family
The thing with alcohol is, it doesn’t only affect one life. I started drinking too much, and the people closest to me were worried more than me. More importantly, drinking worsened my mood and made me a recluse. I hardly talked with the people I held dear. This also led to more drinking because I couldn’t talk with people about what I was going through. When I finally decided to work for it and quit drinking, I could see my relationships with my friends and family.
Extra Tips for Quitting Alcohol
If alcohol dependency is becoming a prominent issue in your life and you would like to quit, here are some tips that helped me on my journey to alcohol-free life:
1. When you think that your alcohol consumption is getting out of hand, it’s always best to talk to someone. Involve your loved ones, no matter how hard it sounds.
2. Prepare a plan of action. This means that you have to understand how much you drink and how you can get rid of it. Some medications can help, and then there are AA (Alcoholics Anonymous) meetings.
3. Get into healthy habits. Start walking or exercising regularly. And personally, meditating and reflecting on where I was going wrong helped me get back on track.
I have suffered from alcohol consumption too much to let anyone else go through the same. I have told you my personal story, hoping that this inspires you to cut down on your drinking. Drinking can feel great at times, I know. But it’s never worth it when you consider the bigger picture. The health risks are far too significant. Don’t waste your life being drunk. Change your habits, and you will also see the benefits that I have seen.
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