Are you at week three of being alcohol-free or thinking about taking an alcohol-free challenge? Week three is where things really start to get interesting. Many people will experience better memory, for example. Here are a few other things that are happening right now.
- Lower blood pressure – Drinking more than one unit per day for women and more than two units for men can, over time, cause a rise in blood pressure. After three to four weeks of abstaining, however, blood pressure will begin to lower. Additionally, consuming fewer calories can cause weight loss which also can lower blood pressure.*
- Improved vision – You may notice whiter, brighter eyes and clearer vision. The latter of which is due to an easing of hypertension and hypertensive retinopathy, known to cause of damage to the blood vessels in the retina. Circulation improves when we stop drinking, which translates to more oxygen and nutrients reaching the yes, helping to prevent disease and damage, such as glaucoma and macular degeneration.**
- Lower risk of stroke and heart problems – Lower blood pressure and healthier weight lowers our risk of stroke and heart disease.
- Maybe a little weight loss (especially if you swapped a boozy happy hour for a fitness-based happy hour — it is so a thing!
What if you still aren’t seeing these or any changes? We keep saying this, but only because it’s true: Be patient. We are all different and will see changes on our own timescale. Stick around, it only gets better!
For anyone who has had a slip up, please be kind to yourself. Every step — even those that seem to send us a little backwards — is an opportunity to learn a trigger and better plan for it next time. Keep going!
Use that better memory you’ve achieved at week three to remember that you are strong and you’ve got this!
**Stephen Hannan, Clinical Services Director at Optical Express, Glasgow, Scotland, UK