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10 Reasons Why You Should Quit Drinking

Alcohol Abuse, The Sun Also Rises

Moderate alcohol consumption has been shown to have some health benefits, particularly if you enjoy the occasional glass of red wine. However, when moderate drinking becomes alcohol abuse or if you think you have developed a drinking problem, perhaps it’s time to quit. If you’ve been wondering if you should quit drinking, consider these 10 reasons why you should and make the decision today.

You’ll sleep Better

It is true that having a cocktail or two after dinner and before bed is relaxing. It is also true that a couple of drinks can help you fall asleep. But, what is not true is that alcohol is an effective sleep sedative. In fact, just the opposite is true.

In a study done at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center in San Diego, California, researchers found that while the sedating effects of alcohol initially promote sleep, it interferes with the ability to remain asleep. More specifically, alcohol disrupts the ability of the body to fall into deep restorative sleep and interferes with the brain rhythms associated with normal sleep.

If you’ve been feeling tired and dragged out despite an eight-hour night of sleep, alcohol is very likely the culprit.

You’ll Lose Weight

It’s a fact. Alcohol causes weight gain, especially around the mid-section. For middle-aged men or women whose metabolism has already slowed, making weight loss difficult, this is especially bad news.

While the caloric intake associated with alcohol might not be huge, they are empty calories which take more out of your body than they give back. What’s worse, on top of the empty calories, alcohol increases your appetite, which adds even more unwanted calories.

Furthermore, alcohol is a drug. In terms of your health and what your body needs to thrive and function at its optimum, it is considered a poison. Alcohol also interferes with blood glucose levels which destabilize blood sugar. The spikes and drops associated with unstable blood sugar not only promote weight gain, but they wreak havoc on your energy level as well.

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You’ll Improve Your Health

Just by virtue of the fact that you will sleep better and lose weight if you quit drinking alcohol, it only follows that your over-all health will improve as a result.

Improvements in your health will go even further if you quit drinking, beginning with one very vital organ – your liver. It is well documented that alcohol abuse can lead to liver damage. In extreme cases it can lead to cirrhosis (scarring of the liver) or death.

Though it is unlikely that the occasional drink will cause long-term health problems or liver damage, there is no doubt that long-term alcohol abuse does take a toll on your over-all health and organs.

You’ll Save Money

You already know that alcohol is not cheap. An average bottle of wine, for example, costs approximately $10 dollars. A glass or two of per night, then, can cost upwards of $100 dollars per month. In today’s economic times, saving $100 dollars a month can be significant and certainly, worth considering.

You’ll Get More Accomplished

If you’re getting better rest at night and your over-all health improves from not drinking, then you can also expect you will have more energy and mental focus to accomplish more through-out your day.

Maybe you’ve been thinking about writing the next great, American novel? Unless you’re Ernest Hemingway, alcohol and productivity generally do not go hand in hand. Yet, even Hemingway’s health suffered from his alcohol abuse.

Okay, so maybe you won’t be writing the next, “The Sun Also Rises”, but, you never know. But, at least you’ll have more energy to get things done.

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The Appearance of Your Skin will Improve

Like caffeine found in coffee, soda and tea, alcohol is a diuretic. This means, it drains your body of necessary fluid and water. The result? Your skin is dry and lacks a healthy glow. If you also smoke, you are doing a real number on your skin, because nicotine also causes skin damage.

So, on top of better sleep, over-all improvement in your health, saving a little money and writing that American novel, the appearance of your skin will improve as well.

You Will Reduce the Risk of Some Cancers

According to the American Cancer Society, alcohol use has been linked to cancer of the throat, esophagus, liver, colon and rectum and the pancreas, just to name a few.

As more cancer research is done, it is very likely more links to cancer and alcohol will be established. But, for now, if you quit drinking and you decrease your chances of these types of cancer, it is a fact worth knowing.

You Will Improve Your Brain Function and Memory

Heavy drinking causes brain damage. This is an inescapable fact. Researchers are not entirely conclusive on whether brain damage can be completely reversed if you quit drinking. But, there is strong evidence the brain can and does rejuvenate itself to some degree.

While we may laugh at the notion of the local, town drunk, the reality of long term alcohol abuse on the brain is no laughing matter. If you have sustained any brain damage or memory loss from alcohol abuse, any reversal from quitting, great or small, would be a good thing.

Your Self-Esteem Will Improve

Unfortunately, many people drink to avoid coping with problems in their life. Alcohol certainly takes the edge off and provides a relaxing distraction from life stressors. But, in the long run, it only serves to compound them.

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If you quit drinking, you will have no other option but to face up to the problems in your life. If you face up to them, you stand a much better chance of solving them. At the very least, you will be forced to develop better coping and problem solving skills. Both of which will greatly increase your self-esteem and give you a better outlook on life in general.

You’ll Live Longer

Of course, there will always be exceptions to the rule. Your Aunt Bessie drank two shots of whiskey every day of her adult life and lived to be 100. But, statistically speaking, if you don’t drink, you will increase the years of your life. This is especially true if you have abused alcohol for any period of time.

With modern medicine, all of us can expect to enjoy at least a 70-year lifespan. If giving up alcohol can increase those years by 10 or 20, it’s certainly worth the effort to quit.


“New Findings About Alcohol and Sleep”. November 5, 2004. Science Daily.com. January 20, 2011. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/10/041030183411.htm

“Alcohol Use and Cancer”. January 21, 2011. American Cancer Society.org. January 21, 2011. http://www.cancer.org/Cancer/CancerCauses/DietandPhysicalActivity/alcohol-use-and-cancer

“Body Effects”. January 21, 2011. Alcohol.org. January 21, 2011. http://www.alcohol.org.nz/BodyEffect.aspx?PostingID=671

“Alcohol Alert”. October 2004. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.gov. January 21, 2011. http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/aa63/aa63.htm

How to Handle Alcohol Cravings When You Quit Drinking” November 28, 2010. Associated Content.com. January 26, 2011. http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/6061180/how_to_handle_alcohol_cravings_when.html?cat=5