With the new year well underway, many people are taking part in Dry January as a way to cut back after overindulging at Christmas, to explore the sober curious lifestyle, or because they may have developed some concerns about the extent of their drinking.
According to a recent report from the British Beer & Pub Association revealed that Britons were expected to drink as many as 8 million pints of low-to-no alcohol drinks as a substitute for the next month.
However Martin Preston, founder and chief executive at Private Rehab Clinic Delamere, warns that mocktails and non-alcohol beverages can be dangerous for those trying to cut back or limit alcohol consumption in January.
They make you crave alcohol
If you are serious about cutting back during dry January, and worrying about it, it is often a good idea to steer clear of mocktails as they can make you crave alcohol more than when you drink normally. This is because a lot of brands or pubs managed to perfect the taste of low-or-no alcohol drinks to be nearly identical to the real thing.
Drinking a beverage that reminds you of the original drink, without the high of intoxication afterwards, can be frustrating when trying to cut back and could lead to giving up before the month is over.
The term “alcohol-free” can be misleading
Alcohol-free or “mocktail” style drinks can often be misleading when it comes to cutting back on the booze. In fact, some wines and beers that claim to be alcohol-free do still contain small amounts in them to give them a similar style taste to the real thing.
While it may seem like an improvement on the usual amounts of alcohol for someone who is trying to cut back, drinking mocktails or alcohol free drinks in large amounts might mean you aren’t having a “dry” January as you might have originally thought.
It can induce bad habits
Despite their low-to-no-alcohol content it is important to be safe and sensible when consuming so you don’t develop new bad habits.
Drinks like mocktails can be really easy to consume in large amounts because they are filled with fruity flavours and tastes that replicate alcohol. It is therefore key for those taking part in Dry January, that they consume low-or-no alcohol drinks in sensible amounts so that they don’t carry the habit of heavy consumption into their regular drinking habits when the month is over.
They aren’t as healthy as you might think
Despite being much better for your health than regular alcoholic drinks, consuming a lot of them at once isn’t a good idea because they are quite often packed full of sugar and chemicals.
If one of your goals in Dry January is to reduce the number of calories you consume from alcohol, it’s best to avoid mocktail style drinks so that you don’t end up consuming unhealthy amounts of sugar during your break.
The taste can make you look for alcohol
Despite some non-alcoholic drinks tasting like their alcoholic counterparts, a lot of the time you don’t get the rich flavour that comes with normal beer or cocktails.
The problem with this is, the experience of non-alcoholic beverages can be underwhelming and might cause some individuals to give up, or forget why they are doing Dry January in the first place.
If those cutting back do choose to drink mocktails as a substitute, it’s key to remember that they might not get the same satisfaction as a regular alcoholic drink.
This article is courtesy of Delamere.