Learn to go lighter on the booze this party season with our top tips on cutting back on alcohol for a happier, healthier you.
Meet friends for a coffee, not a drink
If your aim is a good chat in a relaxed environment—whether for business or pleasure—find a nice café. That way, you’ll keep alcohol out of the equation.
That can only be a good thing considering it has a part to play in some 60 medical conditions, from cancer to depression.
Always have two glasses on the go
One of wine and one of water. Use water not alcohol to quench your thirst and sip on the alcohol for the flavour.
Keep the wine bottle off the dinner table
It’s just too easy to keep pouring until you’ve drained the bottle.
Instead, keep a jug of water on the table, then pour one glass of wine, cork the bottle and put it away.
Find an alternative to your favourite tipple
Non-alcoholic of course. What about iced tea or a smoothie, or pleasantly fizzy elderflower pressé? Or it could be a walk or a hot bath. Do it for two weeks until it becomes your new habit.
Work out how much money you’re spending
…on booze each week. Nothing will be more sobering!
And once you know, commit to spending half that amount and save the rest for something special.
Make a list of rules
For instance, no more than one drink a day; drink only at weekends; drink only wine spritzers; drink only when you’re dressed in your best clothes, and so on.
Post the list near the fridge or drinks cabinet.
Don’t drink alone
Not because it’s sad–there are plenty of times when a glass of wine by yourself is very nice and totally appropriate–but for the discipline.
It’s too easy to start drinking excessively if you drink on your own.
Tell everyone you’re cutting back
The hope is this will prevent people from urging you to have just one or just one more.
Have a No-vember
You’ve heard of Dry January, but why wait? There’s evidence that giving up booze for a month can help you lose weight, sleep better, and lower blood glucose levels (a risk factor for diabetes) and cholesterol.
But it’s important to use it to cut down on your drinking overall—it’s no good going on a binge at the end of the month!
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