The holidays are all about decadent indulgence. Let's be honest: By the time the ball dropped on Times Square, you'd probably consumed enough alcohol to fill up an Olympic size swimming pool. All that partying was fun, but as the confetti is swept away and you found yourself waking up from your umpteenth hangover, it might be time to rethink your choices: Could it be time to try Dry January?
In case you haven't heard of it before, Dry January is the annual movement originated in 2012 by the charity Alcohol Change UK through which millions of people sign up to give up alcohol for the month of January, making healthier and happier decisions all year round. It's a shock to the system after all the excess of the holidays, but it's an effective way to reset your lifestyle. A 31-day break from booze has physical and mental benefits that can help set a positive tone for the rest of year. Keep reading for five reasons why you should consider cutting out alcohol this month.
Image via Gradyreese/Getty
Alcohol seems to be a go-to nightcap for most, but did you know that it can disrupt your sleep patterns? When you consume alcohol before bed, your body doesn't get the chance to reach deep sleep that helps the body to de-stress, repair and replenish itself for a new day. According to Alcohol Change UK, 71 percent of Dry January participants reported better sleep, feeling more restful and energized the next morning, making for a better emotional outlook as well.
Image via bymuratdeniz/E+/Getty
Getting much-needed rest gives you more energy the next morning, making Dry January the perfect partner for any fitness-related New Year's resolutions you may or may not have made.
Image via Igor Emmerich/Cultura/Getty
Alcohol is empty calories — even a 1-ounce shot of tequila contains around 64 calories (and that's on the low side) — so cutting back can lead to some weight loss. Be warned though: Taking a break from booze can cause sweets cravings, so it's best to fill the void with healthy foods such as avocado, coconut oil and extra virgin olive oil, as well as good greens like asparagus, broccoli and cauliflower to keep blood sugar levels balanced.
Image via Tara Moore/DigitalVision/Getty
Alcohol dehydrates the skin, so your Dry January journey might actually help with your skin care-related New Year's resolutions. You're also going to want to make sure to rehydrate from within by drinking lots of fluids, which is another bonus for your skin. Additionally, eating nutritious meals will increase your vitamin intake, boasting cell renewal, making your skin more radiant and fresh.
Image via Imaxtree