Heading towards the festive period, it’s pretty difficult to get away from the indulgences that this can bring, including the alcohol that comes excessively with it.
Whether you’re heading to German markets for a bit of mulled wine, enjoying a pre-dinner glass of wine, or those festive nights out on the town, you can’t seem to hide away from the alcohol!
If you’re looking to have an alcohol-free winter this year, you may be worried about how you may get involved in the festivities. Thankfully, it’s becoming common for people to reduce alcohol levels as they look towards having a more healthy lifestyle. This means there’s a great variety for those wanting to be alcohol-free, such as non-alcoholic events, alcohol-free drinks and even alcohol-free bars.
Top tips for staying alcohol-free this festive period:
- Stay active!
- Find your favourite alcohol-free drink alternatives
- Volunteer yourself as designated driver
- Choose restaurants over bars
- Make your own traditions
Prevent your inner Grinch from coming out and keeping you alcohol-free throughout the holidays! Find some of our tips below so you can spend longer putting up the decorations rather than staying in bed hungover.
Exercise and get outside
This may be the last thing you’d want to do during the cold winter months, but keeping active and getting outdoors is a great way to prevent yourself being surrounded by the temptations of alcohol. It’s also a great way to take advantage of the hangover-free days that normally have you cuddled up in bed before the next round of food and beverages.
Find an alcohol-free alternative
Alcoholic drinks without containing alcohol might have seemed a bit of nonsense a while ago. Now, brands are becoming more open to introducing alcohol-free drinks for consumers that still enjoy the taste but don't want the alcohol levels. Thankfully, this is the same for many businesses that open Christmas stalls over the festive period too. They’re helping to cater the audiences that prefer to stay alcohol-free and regularly turn up to German markets. Home-made mocktails are also an option to make your alcohol-free life a little interesting and spontaneous.
Be the designated driver
If you are early into your Alcohol-Free Challenge, assigning yourself as the designated driver can help to divert attention away from why you aren't drinking, meaning you can avoid temptation from any persuasive friends or family. They’re likely to respect your decision not to drink and they’re also likely to be more happy that a personal chauffeur is available too! It also means that you’ll be less tempted to have an alcoholic drink yourself. But don’t think you’re totally missing out because it means you’ve left more space for food!
Eat out instead of going for drinks
In the past, you may have enjoyed going out with your friends for a few bevs, and whilst being alcohol-free by no means stops you from continuing doing so, an easy replacement would be to eat out rather than drink. Those who wish to drink, can – but the focus is on the food, rather than the alcohol.
Better still, you’ll be saving calories on the amount you’d normally cover through drinking so you can afford to eat a little more. Essentially, eating is a great alternative to drinking because you can continue to bond with your friends as well as save yourself a hangover in the morning!
Make new traditions
When we think of festive traditions it’s hard to think of many that don’t revolve around alcohol. If it’s the case, it’s still a great opportunity to create new traditions that don’t include it. There are many alternatives to help pass the time. You could take a winter break away, holiday themed movie marathons or even going ice-skating. Just double check that you’re relatively stable on the ice or you’re actually able to do it.
Jamie Costello is a Junior Researcher for Public Health based in the UK. As part of his job he requires to keep up to date with the latest health trends, but also likes to write articles to showcase his expertise. He uses his experience from education as well as previous work experience at a digestive health supplement business to collate the information in his articles.