Healthy and sober life as a new trend
The society has always portrayed alcohol consumption as an ultimate way of having a great time. When a person abstains from drinking, it’s assumed that they are struggling with alcoholism or financially. This in itself has historically been kept private and stigmatised. In most cases, a person that abstains from alcohol consumption is seen as a teetotaler that doesn’t know the best way to have fun.
But, there is a shift from this perception. Health and sober life is now the new trend. You’ve probably heard the phrase “sober curious”. This is the phrase being used to describe individuals that drink less or even do not drink at all and proudly tells everybody about their abstinence. Broadcasting their abstinence to everybody forms part of their personas in the social media.
Decreasing Number of Alcohol Consumers
The number of individuals drinking alcohol in the UK and U.S is decreasing gradually. More young persons are embracing sober lifestyles in these countries. But, what exactly is causing this trend? Alcohol consumption has always been considered the ultimate way of having fun. Still, more and more people want to stop drinking (AddictionResource gives more info).
Ruby Warrington authored a book titled Sober Curious. In this book, Ruby describes alcohol as the new cigarettes. And just like smoking cigarette became less glamorous, alcohol consumption will eventually not be as glamorous as it has been over the years. Many studies have been published on the negative effects of alcohol consumption. Consequently, justifying alcohol consumption will eventually become harder.
In the book, Ruby compares the relationship she had with alcohol and the interest she eventually developed in a sober lifestyle. She started questioning her relationship with alcohol critically. She says that the new trend is about questioning how a person uses alcohol, why they use it, and its effects on their overall wellbeing.
She suggests questioning mindset in drinking situations instead of going along with a dominant culture of drinking. Her goal is to nudge individuals into evaluating the social and cultural context of alcohol use. Ruby urges her readers to reconsider their subconscious ways of drinking as a socially accepted habit that is expected of them.
Assessing the Drinking Problem
People have always held the idea that a person can be an alcoholic, a drinker, or a normal drinker that doesn’t have any problem with alcohol. But, shades of grey are now emerging concerning alcohol dependence.
Most people have always held the opinion that assessing problematic drinking entails more than just making an observation. They argue that it requires medical science. But, alcohol use disorder involves a spectrum that ranges between mild and severe.
As such, quitting alcohol can enable a person to assess whether they have a drinking problem or not. If a person feels better when sober, it means their body is telling them something. In her book, Ruby reduced her alcohol intake as a logical step towards wellness revolution.
A major reason why a healthy and sober life is attracting many people as the new trend is the fact that people are becoming more aware of the health effects of alcohol. Consuming too much alcohol can hurt your health. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s fact sheet on alcohol use, excess drinking caused about 88,000 deaths between 2006 and 2010 in the U.S.
At the same time, excessive alcohol consumption caused 2.5 million years of potential life lost in the U.S. It also shortened the lives of the people that died by about 30 years. Additionally, excessive drinking caused 1 in every 10 deaths of working adults aged between 20 and 64 years. Such statistics have raised health concerns among experts and drinkers and some people question the logic in drinking.
On the other hand, quitting drinking comes with numerous health benefits. For instance, quitting can boost your immune system. That’s because alcohol lowers the effectiveness of the white blood cells when it comes to fighting bacteria. Your liver will also be healthier when you quit because you avoid overloading it with the number of toxins it has to breakdown from alcohol. Other benefits of quitting include decreased cancer risk, a stronger heart, as well as improved cognitive and memory.
Quitting can also increase the level of serotonin in your body since alcohol acts as a depressant. Thus, if you tend to feel more comfortable while socialising as you drink, being sober will help you develop and boost confidence naturally.
The Emergence of Sober Bars
Sober bars may seem somehow counter-intuitive. However, they are slowly getting trendy and their numbers are increasing. Sober bars provide a healthy alternative for people that want to quit drinking and still have fun. By going to these bars, you enjoy a sober night out with people that also don’t drink or don’t want to drink.
Non-alcoholic bars are becoming increasingly popular in different parts of the world. Creative and cool non-alcoholic drinks are served in these establishments with great music performed live or played by deejays. These bars also feature the same vibe with bars that serve alcoholic drinks. The only difference is that people don’t get wasted in these establishments.
Cultural influence is another reason why a healthy and sober life is becoming a popular trend. The world is increasingly becoming multi-ethnic and diverse. Some individuals are from the cultures where people frown upon the individuals that drink. These are bringing the same influence in places like the UK and US where drinking is considered a normal and ultimate way of having fun. It’s this influence that is making getting drunk become less socially acceptable behaviour. Staying sober is becoming more normalised and commonplace.
The Bottom Line
Healthy and sober life is a new trend that is being embraced by more people from different cultures. Individuals have their reasons to want to stay sober. Sober curious, which is largely about having it all even without alcohol, is a major reason why more people want to lead a healthy and sober life. Influencers are giving sobriety and the drinking culture a second look. This combined with the availability of information on health effects of alcohol and how to quit drinking as well as, cultural influence, has made healthy and sober life a popular trend.