Hands cupping a bunch of fresh blueberries

Control your Alcohol Cravings with these Handy Hacks

LOCKDOWN EXCESS STARTING TO SHOW?

If you have been indulging in a few glasses of shandy more than normal during lockdown then you are not alone! Figures published by data insights and market research company Kantar show that alcohol and takeaway sales in the UK have boomed as nights in have replaced nights out under lockdown.

Supermarkets’ sales of alcohol were 50% higher in May 2020 compared to the same time a year ago. Happy days for the retailers. Not so happy days for your liver.

BOOZE AND BAD FOOD

Ok, I am certainly not going to preside as the wine or food police here as I am a self-confessed wine lover with a weakness for a glass of good Malbec. However, it is certainly useful to be equipped with the facts so next time you are thinking about your choices, you can make an informed decision.

Alcohol of any description is not the foundation for a healthy diet (my prize for stating the bloomin’ obvious awaits). Why might this be so? Firstly, it’s loaded with empty calories. Secondly, it makes you crave greasy and fatty foods. And thirdly it can prevent you absorbing essential nutrients and vitamins.

So, if you are wanting to cut down on the booze, or remove it altogether from your life, eating properly will make this a whole lot easier.

And for my second stating the bloomin’ obvious prize, eating the right food will give your energy levels a boost, improve your mood and your overall general health. And for those of us with young kids at home, anything which boosts the energy and lightens the mood can only be a good thing…

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO NURTURE YOUR NUTRITION?

Let me make an admission here – I am not a qualified nutritionist – I am a clinical wellness practitioner. However, I know several very good nutrition therapists to whom I refer my patients and clients in my own clinical wellness practice. So, this information is based on what has been given to me by very reliable *sources! (*always seek advice from a qualified, accredited and certified therapist).

  1. All about Balance : a good balance of protein, carbs, colourful veggies and healthy fats is the aim.
  2. Breakfast Like a King : porridge and fruit or eggs and wholemeal toast are an ideal breakfast as they keep your appetite sated for longer without extreme blood sugar spikes/drops. Sugar imbalance leads to cravings and cravings lead to a drop in our resilience to temptation.
  3. Healthy carbs: Without healthy carbohydrates, our blood sugar becomes unstable – affecting our serotonin levels, our mood, our sleep and our ability to stay on the healthy eating/alcohol reduction programme. High-fibre, slow-releasing carbs like wholemeal grains and sweet potatoes are your friend.
  4. Good fats: Sources of healthy fats, like oily fish, avocados, olive oil and nuts/seeds reduce inflammation in the body. They also keep your heart healthy, your skin clear and your hair strong. They’re basically the superheroes in your diet. Show them the love they deserve.
  5. Protein Packing: Basically if you don’t eat enough protein your blood sugar becomes imbalanced and you start craving sugar. Including meat (or veggie alternative/substiture), nuts, seeds or tofu in every meal keeps these urges at bay.
  6. Gut Maintenance: Maintaining a healthy gut is essential for your immune system. Remember, the more diverse your diet, the more diverse your microbes and the better your health. Vary your food (healthily) and include fermented foods like kefir and yoghurt. A healthy gut is a happy gut. (And I will write a whole other blog on the importance of gut health…)
  7. Magnesium: If you are deficient in Magnesium your sugar levels, your mood and your ability to handle cravings will be impacted. Magnesium supplements or sprays are typically available in your local health food store.
  8. Water Water Water : Dehydration is not good. Drink plenty of water. The end.

GET AHEAD OF THE GAME

As with so many things in life, prior planning and prevention prevent poor performance, so make time to plan your shopping and your meals and you will only buy what you know is right for you and your alcohol free or alcohol reduction programme!

If you require any support getting back on track with your health and nutrition or your desire to cut down on the booze, please do drop me an email on kate@insideoutwellness.healthcare and I would be happy to refer you to a reputable nutrition therapist.

Bon Appetit!

Kate Morris-Bates | Wellness Expert | Clinical Therapist | Health Coach