Temps de lecture : 3 minutes

Have you ever heard of Dry January? This alcohol-free challenge, which originated in the United Kingdom, encourages people to rethink their drinking habits. A study conducted by the University of Sussex in 2019 surveyed over 4,000 participants of the challenge and found that 56% slept better, 52% had more energy, and 63% saved money. Why not get inspired by this initiative to drink differently over the holidays—and maybe even year-round? Check out our suggestions for festive low-alcohol and alcohol-free drinks, which are sure to impress. Cheers!

 

Shifting habits

While about 25% of Canadians reported an increase in alcohol consumption at the start of 2021—partly due to boredom, stress, and anxiety during the pandemic lockdowns—these levels eventually stabilized and have since declined. According to a survey conducted for Éduc’alcool in May 2021, 83% of respondents said they drank the same amount or less.

There’s no denying it: more and more people are taking an interest in the sober-curious movement and drinking more mindfully!

 

What are the upsides?

We often hear about the health risks associated with heavy drinking. But we can also look at the issue from a different angle, namely by considering the benefits of zero to moderate alcohol consumption.

The research shows that, in addition to enjoying improved sleep, concentration, and energy levels, people who drink in moderation, or who abstain from alcohol entirely, have a lower risk of developing neurocognitive disorders than those who drink in excess. What about you? What reasons might motivate you to rethink your drinking?

Life really does taste sweeter when you drink in moderation (i.e., around one drink a day, with at least one or two days off per week so it doesn’t become a habit) or give up alcohol altogether. And we haven’t even touched upon all the money you’ll save and the new things you’ll discover by drinking less!

 

No alcohol? No hangover!

Non-alcoholic beers, dealcoholized wines, mocktails… There’s no shortage of options to help you drink less without even noticing. Businesses in this growing market are booming, and they understand that today’s consumers want to make better, healthier choices while supporting the local economy.

Thinking of mixing your own virgin spritz, mojito, or Bloody Caesar? The Internet has countless recipes for mocktails and low-alcohol cocktails you can access for free in just a few clicks. A good mocktail should have a nice balance of flavours and no more than 2 to 4 ingredients. It’s best to avoid cocktail mixes and recipes that use soft drinks or syrups with too much added sugar.

You can also try infused water with fruit or fresh herbs, iced teas or herbal infusions, and homemade low-sugar lemonade.

 

Dress up your drink

Remember, we also eat and drink with our eyes! Is there anything more comforting than sipping a London fog, hot chocolate, pumpkin spice latte, or golden milk latte from a mug you just purchased, painted, or made yourself? What about drinking sparkling water from an old-fashioned glass garnished with slices of citrus, cucumber, or fresh herbs? Fruity ice cubes (e.g., strawberry, raspberry, cranberry, pineapple) can be another great mouth-watering addition.

There are endless possibilities, so get creative!

 


 

  • If you’re concerned about your drinking habits or those of a loved one, there are services that can help. For instance, you can talk to a doctor about your concerns or contact a support program like Alcochoix+. Click here to learn more about what support services are available in Canada.