Why give up drinking alcohol?

Pouring water at the dinner table

Have you ever woken up the morning after and told yourself that you’re “never drinking again.” Most times, however, the mindset is temporary and a few days later, you’re out drinking with friends again. But, what if you did stop drinking? What if you held true to your words? What would happen to your body? To your mind?

Increasingly, individuals are taking steps towards sobriety with movements such as the “sober curious” movement which introduces people to sober life and at the same time, there has been a sharp advent in the production of non-alcoholic beverages, with a global industry, expected to grow from £669.34 million GBP in 2020 and to £1256.2 billion GBP by 2028.

Getting sober may seem daunting, but the benefits will outlive any of the short-term ones that come from drinking. There are a ton of reasons why you should stop the sauce, and we’ve answered some of the most common questions surrounding reasons to give up drinking below:

The most evident change following a shift to sobriety will be in your skin. Alcohol affects your skin in multiple ways: from falling asleep in your makeup to the dilated blood vessels caused by heavy drinking. Each of these take a large toll on your skin, one that not even the most in-depth regime can prevent. By not drinking, your skin will not only stop ageing as quickly, but it will also glow more radiantly, look firmer, and, ultimately, provide you with a healthy complexion.

The benefits to your health are numerous. From your liver, to your brain, to your heart, to your teeth, alcohol’s impact is evident in the majority of your body.

Gut Health

According to the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, heavy drinking can lead to a lack of the necessary “amino acids, proteins and certain vitamins”. The acidity in alcohol hinders your gut health and prevents it from absorbing the necessary vitamins and minerals. By not drinking, you can heal the lining of your stomach and intestines and facilitate the rejuvenation of your gut. 

Cardiovascular Health

Giving up alcohol will significantly improve your heart health, reducing the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. Alcohol can narrow your blood vessels and prevent the facilitation of important heart functions. This affects your cardiovascular strength both in the short-term, with increased strain, and the long-term, with the development of hypertension. By quitting, you are able to reverse the impacts on your blood pressure and return your body to its normal, healthy state.


We’ve all heard of how alcohol severely impacts our livers, ultimately putting us at risk of liver disease and cancer; however, the stark reality is that alcohol puts us at risk of developing cancer in more than one area. Heavy drinking can lead to

  • Breast cancer
  • Colon and rectal cancer
  • Esophageal cancer
  • Laryngeal cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Oral cancer
  • Throat cancer

Quitting drinking can decrease your risk of such diseases, increasing your overall health.

Will Giving Up Drinking Impact My Mood?

Drinking can often leave you in a sad, drained, and overly emotional state. Dr. Hemal Shah, a GP, notes that “while alcohol may temporarily boost your mood, ultimately it’s a depressant which, over time, can make you more vulnerable to depression and anxiety.” By turning to a life of sobriety, you can stabilise your mood and improve your mental health. Additional benefits such as a better sex life, strengthened immune system, and greater ability to manage stress and pressure also work to support this improvement.

How Will Giving Up Drinking Impact My Finances?

Drinking drains. It drains your mind and body, but it also drains your wallet. Heavy drinking can add up to thousands of dollars yearly. The money saved from abstaining can be used to invest in yourself and your future, ultimately reaping greater benefits than a drunk night out. RewardDays has a number of partners that can be purchased both as temporary and longer term replacements to alcohol.

What Are the Effects of Sobriety on Cognitive Function?

The brain takes a large hit when you drink, especially in the frontal lobe – the part responsible for many critical functions including reasoning, behaviour control, memory, and motor function. Long-term heavy drinking can lead to a loss of memory and a deterioration in one’s ability to think critically. Studies have found, however, that individuals who stop drinking are able to reheal their brain and grow back parts of the damaged/lost tissue.

How Does Quitting Drinking Affect Weight?

Many of us have heard that quitting alcohol can help you lose weight – but how? Limiting your alcohol consumption can lead to weight lose in two different ways: (1) in decreasing your junk food cravings and (2) in contributing to a lower calorie intake. When you cut out alcohol, you immediately cut down your caloric consumption. The average beer ranges from 50 to 100 calories, a glass of wine is anywhere between 120 and 165, and a shot of vodka has about 100. Secondly, heavy drinking often leads to poor dietary choices – once you’ve had a couple of pints, you’re more likely to order that extra large pizza. While cutting out alcohol won’t necessarily lead to an extreme weight drop, when paired with healthier lifestyle choices, quitting alcohol will inevitably result in weight loss.

Will Quitting Drinking Reduce Anxiety?

We often turn to alcohol as a relaxer. Be it to release the stress of a heavy week of work, to alleviate struggles with family, or to weaken pent up frustration from being home with the kids all day, alcohol is often an outlet for coping with mental health struffles. What we don’t often realise, however, is that alcohol is directly contributing to our anxiety and depression levels, and not in a helpful way. Alcohol consumption, specifically habitual drinking, heightened anxiety by affecting the brain’s production of serotonin and dopamine – the “happiness” chemicals. Although alcohol can give you initial boosts of improved mood and self-confidence, once these positive feelings go away, you end up feeling more drained and anxious. Limiting your alcohol consumption will help regulate anxiety levels and when paired with the formation of new, positive habits for coping, will eliminate the grip anxiety has over your life.

How Does Drinking Alcohol Affect Your Behaviour?

It is undeniable that alcohol affects your behaviour. We see it in videos of people fighting in the pub, falling down stairs, and telling all sorts of tales after having a few drinks. Drinking alcohol affects your physical behaviour and your social behaviour. Looking at the impact on physical behaviour, drinking alcohol can result in slurred speech, loss of coordination, falling, loss of inhibition, passing out According to research from the Journal of Social Psychology, when it comes to social behaviour, drinking leads to increased aggression, self-disclosure, sexual adventuresomeness, and more.

How Does Drinking Affect Pregnancy?

The effects of drinking on pregnancy and the development of the baby are drastic and dangerous. Research from the National Health Services (NHS) shows that drinking alcohol, especially in the first trimester increases the risk of miscarriage, premature birth, and the baby being born at a dangerous weight. Because the child cannot process alcohol the same way the mother can, too much exposure will seriously impact its development.