Why I’ve decided to quit alcohol – I’ve been drinking alcohol since I was thirteen years old. Shocking, right? The truth is, that was how old I was when my mum died. It was such a tough time for my family and I guess it was one of the triggers that kicked it all off.
I started going out with friends and the booze always flowed. It’s crazy when I think about it now. A bunch of thirteen year olds hitting the bars and clubs – and getting served without a single question being asked. Fortunately things have changed today and it’s not quite as easy for youngsters as it was back then. Well, I hope it’s not anyway.
For the rest of my teenage years, I would hang out with friends every weekend and we always did the same – drink and smoke cigarettes. Although I did quit the latter when I was 16, after my boyfriend (and now husband) gave me an ultimatum: him or the cigarettes. I chose wisely 😉
But even though he doesn’t drink (he got drunk once and said never again and he never did!), I continued to. Wine, beer, the occasional cocktail or the odd liqueur. I never really stopped. I would have a glass of wine almost every night and at weekends, at least two (and if I was out, even more). Hubby insisted it wasn’t doing me any good. It was the one thing we argued about. I wish I’d listened.
The truth about why I’ve decided to quit alcohol
As the years passed, my health began to suffer. I developed lactose and gluten intolerances and my stomach almost always resembled that of a pregnant woman in the early to mid stages. I would come down with bug after bug, which would undoubtedly affect my mood. My hormones were all over the place too. Add to that, horrendous back pain and strange dull aches and pains in my legs that affected my sleep – which were so bad three or four times a year that I could barely function. I went to a couple of doctors but neither really did much for me.
And then, about five years ago I decided to go on a raw food detox. I went through hell for four days – the pain in my legs and lower back was unbelievable – before I started feeling better. Both hubby and I changed our diet to an alkaline one which was amazing. I began cycling a few times a week too. I lost loads of weight and felt rejuvenated. But slowly (and stupidly) I began to get back into bad habits again.
Fast forward to this summer and over the past few months, I barely had a few days of feeling good. I went from having excruciating period pains to catching a cold, then a tummy bug, and then another bug and then the pains in my legs started up again! Not to mention I was suffering with palpitations every single day. I couldn’t take it any more. Enough was enough. I am a yoga teacher after all, and I just wasn’t being the best role model for anyone!
I needed to make some changes and I needed them to be for life. Not just for a few months. But forever. I could no longer live this way, knowing that I could feel so much better if I just changed my lifestyle. So that’s what I’m doing right now. I officially quit alcohol on 11th October 2017 and began the alkaline diet again.
I told some of my close friends during a dinner at their house a few nights ago and they thought I was joking! They sipped wine while I discovered a taste for tonic water, and I realised I didn’t need wine to enjoy myself.
I know it’s going to be a little tough at times – celebrations, for example or at Christmas when the mulled wine is flowing. But I know I can do it. For me, for my body and also for my husband.
And while I’m at it, I’m making a real concerted effort to avoid caffeine, sugar and anything else processed too. But that’s not so much of a big deal because we tend to avoid the processed stuff anyway. I’m not giving it up entirely though – I will have one cup of coffee and a slice of cake and/or a chocolate or two as my weekly treat!
If you’re interested, I will keep you posted how it’s all going. With me luck!