December 10, 2018
When it comes to Christmas, we all give ourselves a little room to indulge at this time of year. After all, how can we not? Most households are full-to-bursting with cheese, chocolates, wine and other treats which we can eat to our heart’s content for two weeks in December. Many people find that when New Year hits, a few New Year’s resolutions are needed, and a third of people choose something diet-related as their number one January priority. This is where Dry January was born, and for some, it really is a successful and much-needed objective.
Here are just some benefits to choosing an alcohol free January:
Health – The Telegraph says that research shows a month off alcohol improves concentration, blood sugar levels, blood pressure and is good for your liver. You will therefore find that you have more energy, sleep better and have clearer skin.
Weight- This could also have a knock on effect on your weight. Giving up booze could help you lose a few pounds in the long run. Research shows that people who are heavy drinkers, (at least four drinks a day) have a 41% higher chance of going from a healthy BMI to an overweight BMI, as compared to people who aren’t heavy drinkers.
Money – There’s also the money you'll save (which in January is always a good thing). Alcohol costs a lot and by giving it up for just 4 weeks, you could see a real financial benefit. And it might help persuade you to cut down on alcohol for the rest of the year, too.
But how can you ‘enjoy’ Dry January without feeling like you are being deprived? Here’s a few tips:
Avoid bars – Try and avoid social gatherings in pubs and bars, as you will be tempted to crave alcohol more when you are surrounded by other people who are drinking. Try going to a cafe, the cinema or museum instead.
Go for a walk- Northumberland offers some fantastic walking opportunities. If you’ve booked to go away in January, you will be able to keep yourself distracted by exploring new places. Grace Darling holiday cottages offer great opportunities for escapism.
Download an app- Alcohol Concern has a free app that you can download which might help you. It lets you keep track of what you drink each day to show you how far you've come. It also tells you how much money you've saved. This is a good motivational app to keep you on track.
Make a friend – Why not persuade a partner or a friend to avoid alcohol with you? It will make missing out a lot easier with a little morale support. You will be less inclined to stray when you have another person on board.
Start a new hobby – January is the perfect time to start a new hobby. When in Northumberland, there’s lots of opportunities to start something new. How about star gazing at the Kielder Observatory? Or painting at one of the oil painting workshops taking place in the region? There’s also many chances to explore the area via cycle, walking or one a dog walking route, if you bring your pets with you!