My 49th birthday seemed like a good day to start drinking again, although I was warned of a warning.
I come from a family of drinkers and have been drinking for 30 years at a level that certainly went beyond "moderate". I'm not sure if "hard" was accurate and I did not have a "problem". Or at least I do not think so. Mostly I did not like the amount I drank and wanted to restrict myself, and I had tried it more often than I can remember.
As a health and fitness writer known for his skepticism, I've never been in The claim that a daily dose of alcohol is healthy or the ridiculous idea that a glass of red wine equals an hour in the gym was purchased. It is referred to as "intoxicated" because you are taking toxin .
However, the dose makes the poison, and many people choose to poison themselves: In a recent report, the World Health Organization said more than 5% of all deaths were caused by alcohol abuse each year. Five percent!
And last August, a disturbing meta-analysis was published in the lancet which states that "the degree of consumption [of alcohol] reduces the loss of health to a minimum." It is true that alcohol is a class 1
It's clear that less alcohol is better than more alcohol.
I am a healthy nut. I exercise more than 99 percent of the population, have a healthy body weight, eat my fruits and vegetables, do not smoke, take care of my stress … but my alcohol intake was worrying. I knew that my health and probably my life in general would be better if I cut myself off.
And then, when I experienced a run on a snowy winter day in late 2015, I experienced a transformative moment. I had an awakening that caused me to stop drinking for at least a year. The feeling was so powerful that switching off alcohol was effortless.
I knew that it would not be forever, but I wanted to be able to stop for a year and drink at much lower levels, both for my health and for my health, my lifestyle. Half of the year went great and I decided that I wanted to expand it to prove that I would not have to start over again on day 366. Actually, it would have been day 367 because I quit in a leap year
I thought waiting a few months would be a good idea. After the year had expired, I wrote about the benefits of leaving for the Chicago Tribune (19459005). But something I wrote in this article that proved very popular made many embarrass their excretions and e-mail me apocalyptic proclamations.
"If I decide to drink again, I am confident occasionally and easily," I wrote.
My inbox exploded.
If I summarized the contents of these emails in a single short sentence, it would be: "DO NOT!"
I was severely and repeatedly warned that I should never drink again , I was told that many men thought they had control over drinking and tried to reintroduce it after a long break, then fell hard out of the car into a puddle of puke and despair.
I do not doubt that this happens. but I did not think it would happen to me. I was a bit further than "moderate", not "alcoholic". For many, drinking is so terrible that there is no choice but to renounce life. However, there is a mentality that has been immortalized by abstinence groups. If you ever feel the need to stop drinking, it means that your behavior is such that you should never go back to it. They are seen as addicts, and moderation is the dream of a fool.
Such all-or-nothing thinking about alcohol is omnipresent and not always helpful.
In my case I would have been convinced the way forward was never to drink again, I would never have stopped (and would not have gained the benefits of a final decline). I like to drink, but I lived a good life and did not need alcohol to get through the day. My plight was not bad, as is often the case with serious alcoholics.
And there are many others like me who are successful with programs like Moderation Management and One Year No Beer. In these programs, the "restart" of a longer break before a moderate reintroduction of alcohol is common. I did not use a program, but I winged it, based on what felt right at the time.
And when I started drinking again, it was because that felt right. When I finally ordered my first drink (a Guinness), I liked it. It tasted good and washed some fish tacos off well. I ordered a second pint, this Newcastle. I used it for almost an hour and did not stop.
I was not keen on the taste anymore. It was nice. I still liked it But 19459004 I did not take long for it.
Another 17 months have passed since that day, and I can say that the experiment works exactly as I had hoped. The desire to drink frequently or drink too much is gone. Since its reintroduction, my intake can easily be classified as "easy," and I'm looking forward to it continuing.
Why did I start drinking again? Because I always wanted it. I believed that easy drinking was possible for me, and made it possible by taking a longer break to break the desire and show myself that I could abstain without feeling like I was in one The White Knuckle Resistance Continues Fighting
The blog of James S. Fell is read by millions and can be found on bodyforwife.com. His book The Holy Sh! T moment: how lasting change can happen in an instant will be published on January 22 by St. Martin's Press. Take a look at it and follow it on Facebook and Twitter .