You may think I am completely nuts for having gone alcohol free in the middle of the summer months, but it was an excellent challenge which I am glad I accepted. Leading up to this challenge I was given some perspective by my patients. As a primary care provider it is crucial to ask my patients about alcohol intake. I noticed that a majority of them had a lower intake than me. This realization certainly got me thinking.
I knew I had come to rely on alcohol during challenging times while heavily studying and dealing with lots of family matters that had cropped up this year. A glass of wine or 2 at the end of the day just seemed to ease my worries. But 14 drinks a week is right on the borderline of healthy and not-so-healthy... and somehow this (future) naturopathic doctor wasn't taking a dose of her own medicine.
In comes trainer, Rita Catolino, who has been helping me get back into the shape I lost during some of my most challenging times. She encouraged me to ditch alcohol for 1 month.
Hmmm... I thought she was crazy, too. But why not give it a try.
It all began on July 15th. I spoke to my significant other about the changes, and he fully supported me & even decided to join in the fun by cutting out alcohol during the week. I made it through a bachelorette party, a wedding, and 5 days at the cottage all without indulging.
Amazingly enough, going cold turkey has made me desire alcohol much less, and it certainly left a lot more room in the budget for... shoes... I mean, um, not shoes.
Alcohol is a sugar that often has no benefits. In days gone by beer was considered a food and was extremely nutritive, but with today's heavy processing this isn't the case. And even though red wine has heart-healthy antioxidant powers like those from resveratrol it should still be enjoyed in moderation.
What is moderation? Less than 7 drinks/week for women and less than 14 drinks/week for men.
Now, I am thrilled to say I am done the challenge (see my countdown calendar above). I celebrated with 2 glasses of sparkling wine. And I won't have another drop until the weekend.