Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Making the switch: wine for water or milk!

I’ve been hearing a lot about people joining the “Dry January” movement and while I don’t consider myself part of it, I have decided to vastly cut back on my wine consumption in an attempt to make my body healthier and hopefully lose some weight in the process. I have only been at this for about a week, but I feel like I can already see and feel a difference!

I found myself thinking “is it really going to make a difference if I skip that glass (or two or three) of wine after dinner? Does wine contain so many calories that it has made losing weight that much harder? What are the short term and long term effects of drinking alcohol and then giving it up?”. I felt the need to find the answers for my health but also for the health of others!

Making the switch: wine for water Or milk!

What are the nutritional facts for wine?

The following nutritional facts for wine are general to the beverage but, it is important to note that different types of wines will have varying nutritional facts.

Nutritional CategoryAmount per one 5 fl oz serving
Total fat0g
Saturated fat0g
Total Carbohydrates4g
Dietary Fiber0g
Vitamin A0%
Vitamin C0%
Vitamin D0%
Vitamin B-65%

So, while there may be a lot of 0’s listed in the nutritional fact list, that doesn’t mean that wine is a healthy product. In fact, it means that wine lacks important nutritional elements for a balanced diet.

What are the short term effects of consuming alcoholic beverages?

There are many symptoms that people experience temporarily due to consuming alcohol. Most of these symptoms will subside within a few hours after alcohol consumption has ceased.

  • Euphoria: decrease in inhibitions, anxiety,   stress, and motor skills.
  • Unconsciousness
  • Blackouts
  • Dehydration leading to a hangover
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Drowsiness
  • Slurred speech
  • Distorted vision and hearing abilities
  • Disrupted sleep patterns

What are the long term effects of consuming alcohol?

Long term effects of alcohol consumption are not strictly for alcoholics. Anyone who consumes some form of alcohol on a daily basis can experience these effects.

  • Weight gain
  • Alcoholism
  • Liver disease
  • Cancer
  • Malnutrition
  • Pancreatitis
  • Organ damage to the liver, brain, stomach, heart, pancreas, and kidneys.

What are the benefits of cutting back or eliminating the consumption of alcohol?

The benefits are likely obvious at this point. If a person can recognize that they are drinking to excess or that they want to avoid permanent damage to their bodies then cutting back or completely eliminating alcohol consumption is the right place to start! The first day without alcohol may be difficult for routine or excessive drinkers. You may experience some symptoms of withdrawal (see more information about this at https://www.addictioncampuses.com/alcohol/long-term-effects/). But, eventually, you will experience all the good that eliminating alcohol can bring!

  • Your a, keep patterns will normalize and you’ll sleep deeper and better
  • Your skin will look clearer
  • You may behind to lose weight
  • Your brain and other organs will function as they are meant to
  • You drastically reduce the likelihood of cancer, organ failure, malnutrition, and liver disease.

My takeaway

I have been pretty open about my drinking habits. I can admit that over the last year or so, I got used to having up to 3 mason jar glasses of wine each night before bed and believed I needed it in order to sleep. But, for the last week, I have been:

  • Sleeping a bit better
  • Waking more rested
  • Finding motivation in the morning
  • My mind feels clearer
  • I have more energy
  • I feel much more hydrated and overall healthier

I don’t want to ignore that it hasn’t been an easy week, though. I still find myself wanting to have some wine at the end of the day. But, I have switched my mason jars of wine for Mason jars of water (and sometimes a jar of milk) and so far in not looking back. I have also increased my nightly workouts to include weights which keep me busy and motivated to be better. I may not ignore wine for the rest of my life, but I can say that I won’t be falling back into the relationship with it that I once had.

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Bailey Woodean
Bailey Woodean
I have been a freelance writer for more than 4 years, a mom for more than 2 years, and a wife for just under a year. I am currently a student in a cooking and catering program with the intention of expanding my knowledge of the culinary business. I then plan to take this knowledge to properly write about and critique restaurants and food. Writing to you from Niagara Falls, NY, thanks for joining me on the ride!


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