Mindful drinking – 5 tips for drinking in moderation after Dry January

Mindful drinking – 5 tips for drinking in moderation after Dry January

Chris Evans reveals he's given up drinking alcohol midweek

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Searches for ‘mindful drinking’ have increased by 669 percent in the past 24 hours as Brits are desperate to figure out how they can introduce alcohol into their lives again after Dry January (without going overboard). Express.co.uk chatted to Founder and Chief Executive at Delamere, Martin Preston, who has wide expertise in treating alcohol addiction, to find out five tips for drinking mindfully.

Around 20 percent of adult Brits identify as ‘sober’ and the number is rising every year.

Mr Preston said: “We’re living in a wellness revolution and being sober is ‘cool’, these days.

“Not drinking is a trend, no doubt, and it is no longer the reserve of those who’ve had a problem with alcohol, either.

“Whilst the pandemic certainly increased alcohol consumption amongst Brits, as life began to adjust back to normal, many re-evaluated their life choices and made ‘mindful drinking’ and even ‘sobriety’ a part of their everyday lives – which is great!”

If you notice troubling signs about your relationship with alcohol, you may benefit from speaking to your GP or a healthcare professional.

Drinkaware also has helpful information about reducing or giving up alcohol and can signpost further ways of getting confidential support.

Here are five tips for drinking more mindfully.

Try not to drink during the working week

When the week feels like it’s dragging, often many will get to Wednesday or Thursday and fancy a few drinks after work.

Mr Preston said: “It’s ok to have one or two with dinner, going out and binge drinking throughout the week will not only contribute to your weekly units adding to the ones you may consume at the weekend but also make you feel extra exhausted at the end of the week.

“It is important to be wary of any important work meetings you may have and allow your body to get a full night’s rest which isn’t interrupted by alcohol consumption.”

Avoid shots

Shots are often on the cards on a big night out because they’re cheap and easy to drink, but they’re not a good decision if you want to drink in moderation.

Mr Preston said: “Shots will get you drunk very quickly and double your intake on top of long drinks also consumed.

“Instead of a vodka or tequila which normally ranges from around 40 to 55 percent, opt for a lower alcohol version like apple sourz which is 15 percent.

“If you do enjoy certain spirits on their own, try sipping them slowly as opposed to shotting them, making them last longer.”

Water in between drinks

Alcohol makes the body extremely dehydrated, lowering your immune system and energy levels (particularly the next day).

Drinking glasses of water in between drinks will help keep hydration levels up and also quench your thirst, which will stop you from sipping your alcoholic drink too quickly if thirsty.

Mr Preston added: “It also helps to drink water before you go to sleep too, as it helps your body rehydrate and repair during the night.”

Avoid mixing drinks

Mixing three or four measures of spirits alongside other ingredients will make that throbbing head and dry throat much worse the next morning.

Mr Preston advised: “Trying to stick to one drink also reduces the likelihood of your ability to keep track of how many standard drinks you’ve consumed.

“Also, the amount of alcohol in the blood rises quicker after drinking liquor than after drinking beer.”

Feel confident in saying no to alcohol

When someone offers you an alcoholic drink, it can feel easier to accept, simply to avoid any awkwardness.

Mr Preston said: “If you have made the decision to order sparkling water, feel great about it and own it.

“Simply politely decline. Not because you owe anyone an explanation, but because it will make you feel more in control of what your goals are.”

If you’re worried about your drinking or someone else’s drinking, you can call Drinkline in complete confidence on 0300 123 1110 (weekdays 9am to 8pm, weekends 11am to 4pm).

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