Dr. Weeks’ Comment: Let’s start with the fundamentals and correct the native imbalances in your metabolism before we white knuckle it trying to change habits reinforced with biochemical and emotional patterns:
1) Rehydrate! Drink more water and stop the sugar drinks: soda pop and the sugar laden lattes ( since nicotine and alcohol metabolize slowly and clear your system at a steady rate when well hydrated, but you crash and burn more if you are dehydrated).
2) Stabilize blood sugar! It is harder to crave addictive substances if your blood sugar is stable. Try addressing this important variable before attacking the addiction itself.
Dr. Weeks’ Advice on reducing cravings:
If you want to drink less alcohol because you or someone you love/respect told you that you have a problem with alcohol, then follow this 3 step plan:
1) stop all foods that convert rapidly to sugar. These include such as processed bread, pasta, cereal, sugar and refined (white) grains because these act just like alcohol to your system! Would you feed your child a big stick of cotton candy for breakfast? Of course not! So why do you feed yourself SUGAR frosted cereal flakes, or donuts, or toast with JAM coffee with .. you guessed it… SUGAR? Instead, eat slow burning foods like whole grains and whole vegetables (not the ones high in starch like potato and corn which convert rapidly to SUGAR!). Also eat seeds and nuts and meats and salades. When you stabilize your blood sugar, you lower your craving for alcohol!
2) Drink more water. Yup. Simple as that. Every time you crave a beer or some alcohol, just slug down a big glass of water! If one glass doesn’t remove the cravings, drink another. Remember, alcohol is a food preservative because it…. DEHYDRATES food. Well, it dehydrates you too! So, if you are going to drink some alcohol, first drink plenty of water. (Water also lessens hangovers). Remember, soda pops are dehydrating fluids!
3) Never drink alcohol on an empty stomach. We all know about “beer and nuts” “wine and cheese” and smart people always have food in their stomach when they drink alcohol in order to slow down the metabolism of carbohydrate to blood sugar and to reduce the “sugar rush” and the hypoglycemic induced swings in mood and cognitive processes.
Drinking alcohol in moderation is not all bad. It can help us relax and enjoy our life and our friends. W.C Fields has some great quotations about drinking:
~~”During one of my treks through Afghanistan, we lost our corkscrew. We were compelled to live on food and water for several days.”
~~”I like to keep a bottle of stimulant handy in case I see a snake, which I also keep handy.”
But alcohol taken too much and too often can hurt us and those we love.
Of course, when you make up your mind to cut back or to stop drinking, there are plenty of people who love you who will support you – but the secret is not the three tips above. No sir. The secret to stopping addictive behavior, including drinking (and if you don’t believe me, just ask anyone you know who stopped drinking) is simply to make up your own mind. To decide for yourself. This is your life and this is your choice. You can do it.
Your doctor can help: Do some research – see http://weeksmd.com/?p=1964 and Excerpt: ‘The End of My Addiction‘ – ABC News as well as http://scienceblogs.com/bookclub/2009/03/the_end_of_my_addiction_by_oli.php
and ask your doctor about using Baclofen as part of a corrective approach to addiction.