Research Reveals How ‘Dry January’ Can Be Healthy

Research Reveals How ‘Dry January’ Can Be Healthy

The holiday season brings a lot of joy, happiness, and seasonal beverages with it. For the majority of the people, it is the best time of the year where relatives and friends come together. Celebrations, dinners, and parties become common.

In addition, it is also the time where you get to give up on your strict diet, right? Since it is the holiday season, you get a free pass. Calories, sugars, and the amount of alcohol you drink do not count during this specific period of time.

While it can be enjoyable for the time being, following such a routine can have negative effects on your health. However, it is understandable that it is hard to keep a check on your diet especially when everyone around you is eating.

Secondly, most of the parties and dinners serve unhealthy foods. You will hardly attend any event that serves alcohol-free drinks. In accordance with the statistics, people get most of their yearly weight gain during this time.

It is also the time where the cases of heart attack and stress levels go up. Consequently, you may end up consuming a very heavy amount of alcohol. This can harm your health for sure as well as cause conflicts in families and fights. Not the happiest time of year, is it?

These are some of the reasons why many people choose to go for a ‘dry January’ following the holiday season. Some think this is just a trend and it may not have any significant benefits for the health unless you cut down alcohol for the rest of the year as well.

New research challenges this claim and shows the real benefits of giving up drinking for a month. The study was held at the University of Sussex in Falmer.

How Was the Study Conducted?

Dry January is just not a trend but actually also encouraged by the charity organization Alcohol Change United Kingdom. This is to ensure people have a healthy start to the year especially after a whole month of drinking.

The new research, led by  Dr. Richard de Visser from the University of Sussex led, found that people who took part in dry January remanents had healthier body weight. They also had better energy levels compared to those who did not leave alcohol for a month.

Read the study here. 

The researchers reached this conclusion after analyzing three online surveys on people who took part in dry January. At the beginning of the year,  2,821 people filled the survey. In the following month, 1,715 more filled the survey and 816 also gave data in follow-up months.

It was observed that people who gave up alcohol for a month also drank less later in the year. Excessive drinking in people also fell from 4.3 per month to 2.1 per month. Also, leaving alcohol for one month also made the people get fewer drinks on a night out in general.

What Does The Study Show?

According to  Dr. Richard Piper, the CEO of Alcohol Change United Kingdom:

“The brilliant thing about Dry January is that it’s not really about January. Being alcohol-free for 31 days shows us that we don’t need alcohol to have fun, to relax, to socialize,”

The adverse effects of daily alcohol consumption are well-known and documented in medical literature. Cutting down alcohol can have numerous effects on health. Hence, taking a month off from alcoholic beverages is always a good idea. In the end, it will not only be good for your health but will also save you from potential fights and overspending.

Hilary Jensen

Hilary is a Food Science and Nutrition graduate with specialization in diet planning and weight loss. She enjoys reading and writing on Food, Nutrition, Diet, Weight Loss, and General Health.

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