Alcohol detox 101 – What to expect, timeline, and natural detox methods Comments Off on Alcohol detox 101 – What to expect, timeline, and natural detox methods 81,416

Detoxing from alcohol can potentially be one of the hardest things somebody will ever go through. Symptoms of withdrawal can begin as early as two hours after the last drink and can last for weeks. The symptoms can range from anxiety, nausea, and tremors. The symptoms of withdrawal can worsen quite quickly, especially in heavy drinkers.

It’s highly recommended to detox from alcohol under proper medical supervision. However, there are also some natural methods you can use to aid with the process and help your body recover more quickly.

Four Reasons Why You Should Minimize Your Alcohol Intake

1. Alcohol consumption is damaging to your brain.

Alcohol can disrupt your brain whether you’ve only had one or two drinks or if you’ve been a heavy drinker for many years. Blurred vision, slurred speech, difficulty walking, slower reaction times, and impaired memory function are just a few symptoms caused by the damage that alcohol does to your brain.

2. Alcohol consumption takes a toll on your liver.

Long-term, chronic alcohol abuse takes a tremendous toll on your liver. It can contribute to three main types of liver conditions: fatty liver, hepatitis, and scarring of the liver – known as cirrhosis. (1)

3. Alcohol consumption has a negative effect on your pancreas.

Alcoholics and heavy drinkers can cause progressive and irreversible damage to their pancreas (2). Excessive alcohol consumption causes your pancreas to produce a toxic substance that can lead to pancreatitis.

4. Alcohol consumption can increase your risk of cancer.

Many people are surprised to learn that drinking alcohol can actually increase your risk of developing certain kinds of cancers (3). Research has shown patterns that link alcohol abuse to the following types of cancer: head and neck cancer, esophageal cancer, liver cancer, breast cancer, and colorectal cancer.

Natural Detox Methods

For people with only a low to moderate dependency to alcohol, a detox regimen may be enough to reverse the negative effects of alcohol consumption. While it can be an unpleasant process, it’s entirely possible to quit alcohol either cold turkey or by tapering off on your own at home. Here are some tips:

Step 1: Eliminate any and all alcoholic beverages within your immediate environment.

You should obviously remove any and all alcohol in your home and workplace. If you’re not around it, it becomes a little easier to say no and can help you take your mind off of it. Stay busy and find other outlets to unwind and relax after a hard day’s work. Minimizing your exposure to alcohol is one of the most basic, yet most difficult aspects of quitting alcohol because for many people, there is a social aspect to it.

Step 2: Stay hydrated with detox beverages and supplements such as juices and smoothies made from whole foods.

Focus on making sure that you stay properly hydrated throughout your detox. By making something like lemon detox water you can stay hydrated while also providing some added assistance to your kidneys while they begin flushing the alcohol toxins out of your system. Liver support supplements such as milk thistle and cranberry juice may also help, especially during the most rigorous stages of the alcohol detox.

Alcohol Detox Timeline

The timeline of an alcohol detox can vary wildly. It depends on a number of factors, such as how long you’ve been drinking alcohol and how much. This should give you a good idea of what to expect:

Alcohol withdrawal and detox are generally broken down into three main stages. The symptoms of each stage vary, but most often begin within the first eight hours of refusing your next powerful urge to drink. Think of this urge as a ‘need’ rather than a ‘want’. This is commonly referred to as stage one, and usually causes anxiety, insomnia, nausea, and abdominal pain. Stage two usually begins at the 24-72 hour mark and is marked by high blood pressure, an increase in body temperature, unusual heart rate, and in severe cases, confusion. At the 72+ hour mark or stage 3, the risk is highest for anyone who suffers from severe chronic alcoholism, as in stage three hallucinations, fever, seizures, agitation, and other withdrawal symptoms begin to appear.

Near the end of the first five to seven days, most negative symptoms begin to taper off and decrease in intensity. The goal during this first week is to monitor and keep the worst symptoms under control. As long as your blood pressure and withdrawal symptoms remain at safe levels, you can continue to detox on your own without too much issue.

As you enter your second week being free of alcohol, you should notice an increase in your energy levels and focus. It’s not uncommon for many people to already feel like a completely different person at this point. Your cognitive function will usually begin to improve at this stage as well, with memories all of a sudden coming back to you more frequently.

During the third and fourth weeks of a detox, some people experience a slight dip in energy levels. This is normal and to be expected. It usually only lasts for two to three days and then you’ll be back to feeling like a million bucks. At this point, it’s safe to say that physically, your body has made it through the worst of the physical aspects of the alcohol detox.

There may still be lingering psychological effects, however. Many people report feeling like life becomes somewhat bland and boring when abstaining from alcohol. It may be harder to keep in touch with certain friends. Indeed, many people end up finding whole new social circles altogether.

By the end of the first month of going alcohol-free, many people have a newfound confidence in themselves along with the belief that this is a lifestyle change they can permanently stick with. Even for people who don’t intend on giving up alcohol use for the rest of their lives, detoxing for a month provides incredible physical and mental benefits.

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3 Podcasts We Can’t Get Over Comments Off on 3 Podcasts We Can’t Get Over 201,289

Podcasts are the way of the future. Think radio shows but being able to listen whenever and wherever you want. The best part about podcasts is that there’s a niche for everyone. Whether you’re into finance or the Bachelor, we’ve got you covered on the 3 podcasts we can’t get over. 

Finance is Fun!: The Financial Diet

The Financial Diet is the perfect mix of learning more about finances, different career paths and having fun. Each week Chelsea Fagan interviews a guest with an interesting job position. From Youtubers to publicists, you’re sure to feel like an insider after the episode. Chelsea pressures guests to reveal big financial numbers in their life. For some, it’s how much student debt their in while others discuss how much money they made off one Youtube video. If you’re interested in learning the finances behind different professions, check out this podcast on Spotify or Apple Podcasts! 

True Crime Crazed: Crime Junkie

If your ideal documentary is on serial killers, then Crime Junkie is the podcast for you. Crime Junkie features two true crime enthusiasts telling stories about the missing, captured, and murdered. Each episode captivates its listeners with a thrilling narration of true-crime from around the world. There are over one hundred episodes to binge, so start listening today! Another true-crime themed podcast that you have to hear is Serial. Serial started the genre of the crime podcasts and is still a true-crime favorite. The hit podcast has three seasons. Each season the hosts investigate a murder case in real-time. With new evidence pilling up each episode, it’ll be hard to pull away from this intense series. 

The Bachelor Nation’s Favorites: The Viall Files

The Bachelor is the show that keeps on giving. Between The Bachelor, The Bachelorette, and Bachelor in Paradise, ABC produces a season full of love and drama – but mostly drama. Nick Viall, the bachelor in season 21, recaps each episode on his podcast The Viall Files. Bachelor Happy Hour is another amazing podcast where co-hosts and past Bachelor contestants Rachel Lindsay and Becca Kufrindives dive into each juicy episode. 

Podcasts are great for long car rides, getting ready in the morning, or winding down at night. There are thousands of podcasts to choose from, so you’re sure to find one you like. We hope you’ll love these podcasts just as much as us! 

How a simple detox can boost brainpower Comments Off on How a simple detox can boost brainpower 193,505

Girl drinking berry smoothie

 

You know that one person who’s always talking about the latest cleanse or trendy detox and how “life-changing” it is. It’s almost guaranteed that within a few days, they’ll be on to the next one. Who doesn’t want to lose weight, improve endurance, and purge toxins? It’s not surprising to see short term physical benefits from detox, but often not mentioned are the mental health and cognitive performance benefits also gained from a proper detox. Mental health and brainpower benefits are significant.

Anxiety. Insomnia. Depression. Dementia. Eating disorders. Even Alzheimer’s is on the rise. While going on a short term cleanse or detox to help treat any disorder might seem counterintuitive, restoring your body to health both mentally and physically can drastically boost your mood and overall disposition. The glow of positivity from improved self-image helps interpersonal relationships as well.

Girl hiking outside
Is a detox right for me?

Grow new brain cells

  • Most detox diets are significantly low in calories which may help boost Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF). This chemical signal in the brain promotes new cellular growth.
  • As a result, it may lead to a number of mental health benefits including improved brain health and functioning, as well as to help stave off mental illnesses. There are some great BDNF studies available online.

Enhance focus and concentration

  • Another benefit one can attain from slightly restricting calories during a detox is the increase in focus. This is thought to come from a mechanism known as “food-seeking behavior.”
  • The mechanism involved has to do with a rise in hormone production. Dopamine, adrenaline, and cortisol boost focus and reduce distractions. Along with helping to block out distractions, a detox can also help keep your mind focused on tasks. This can help boost productivity in an academic setting or in the workplace, as well as helping to accomplish tasks at home that require efficiency and critical thinking. Additionally, it also may help improve focus and intensity during sports and other physical activities.
  • Certain supplements called nootropics help boost brain function even further by promoting increased blood circulation, stimulation of the central nervous system, and stimulating new brain pathways.

Increase blood flow to the brain

  • Detox diets can boost brainpower through PGC-1-Alpha. This multi-faceted signal assists in a wide range of bodily functions including increased blood flow to the brain improved blood circulation and supplied nutrients and oxygen.
  • This effect is quite beneficial to cognitive health.

Boost mood and good vibes

  • High levels of vitamins and minerals consumed in certain detox treatments boost mood and good vibes by producing serotonin and dopamine.
  • Processed foods, refined sugar, and other food-like products may cause mood swings, feelings of lethargy, energy crashes, and other unpleasant symptoms that may lead to malnutrition.
  • Nutrient deficiencies should be addressed in order to promote overall healthy body function.
Girl hiking outside jumping
No more brain fog!

Improve brainpower, cognitive function, and problem-solving skills

  • This should come as no surprise. High-nutrient, low-calorie foods can greatly improve cognitive functioning.
  • Eliminating nutrient-deficient foods will lift “brain fog” caused by poor diets.
  • Clearer thought processes and faster decision-making skills may be felt almost immediately after commencing a detox.

Improve brain-signaling

  • Hydration is always important. And increasing water intake is usually an aspect of many detox plans. Proper hydration enhances overall health, and greater hydration levels can lead to improved brain-signaling.
  • It goes without saying that water is important for all living things, and it’s especially true for living organisms that are made up of mostly water. In the human body, 73% of the heart and brain is water. This is why dehydration has a direct effect on cognitive performance.

Prevent mental illness

  • Aside from boosting mood and good vibes, assisting in the growth of new brain cells, and improving cognitive performance, a detox can also help prevent mental illness.
  • Brain matter growth can help prevent illnesses like depression or bipolar disorder from developing.
  • An increase in nutrients can help reduce anger and may help prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. With the rise of mental illnesses, it’s worth trying different methods every now and then to see what works best for you.

Prevent cellular breakdown

  • A detox diet can help reduce inflammation in the body. This helps prevent cellular breakdown and promote healthy cells (which, obviously, helps overall health). This is true for all the body’s cells, including those in the brain.
  • Implementing a regular detox may not only help promote the growth of new brain cells but also help protect the cells you have, which can preserve and further boost brain function.

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