Dry January – Love your Liver

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We are in the first quarter of “Dry January”, which generally is 31 days of alcohol abstinence before we can return to our old drinking habits. Our old drinking habits being something we take granted and most of us ought to change. Personally, I do favour the dry January marathon, because of the motive behind general wellness, no hangovers and obviously saving a few extra pounds in the wallet. That being said, post January 31st, I do worry about our intentions to maintain this wellness, the long-term health of the most vulnerable organ that tends to be neglected when the drinking resumes and takes the battering, the liver.

Besides Dry January and Alcohol Awareness Week in November we need to pay much more attention to our liver and reduce the risks of liver cirrhosis. We only have one of it and it has hundreds of essential duties such as fighting infection and disease, destroying poisons and drugs, cleaning the body, balancing the cholesterol, processing food etc.

It has been 15 months since I have nearly joined the teetotallers’ statistic, but have been drawn back by simply one thing, environment factors. Knowing this is a good thing and trying to manage my draw back is another, therefore, finding a long-term solution is my main goal. Even though the causes of drinking differ, from drinking “for social” to “alcohol dependency” the need to control or cease drinking should be considered.

Ideally, for those practising dry January, until the 31st of January, if you manage to abstain from alcohol throughout, well done, however, you have achieved a short-term goal. Preferably, we would like to see it as a motive to revive oneself, drink less and for some, stop for good.  

I do understand, reducing our intake sounds antisocial and stopping for good, even blasphemous, however, there is always a way. Since technology hasn’t yet developed a “Fitbit” monitor to keep track of our Liver, I will advise you read more on a few links below, even better, I strongly recommend a Free App that can help us “Love our Liver” as much as we love our heart.

Here are a few clinical facts that may help you understand the need to drink less or even abstain for good:

  • Liver disease is on the increase in the UK. It can be a silent killer, with no symptoms until it is too late.

  • Exceeding the current recommendations (>14 Units per week) of drinking per week for 10 – 12 years is sufficient to cause liver damage in the absence of other liver diseases.

  • The cornerstone of treatment for Alcohol Liver Disease is achieving total alcohol abstinence and preventing relapse; medical and surgical treatments are limited when drinking continues.