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MERLINANDME's Photo MERLINANDME Posts: 19,109
8/18/17 11:13 A

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Sometimes consuming alcohol regularly is more than a habit. The reasons for drinking excessively are as variable as personalities. Anyone who feels he has to have a drink should first talk to his doctor and then follow doctor's orders.

"Start from where you are." ~ Elle, AnAuthor

"Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish. "~ John Quincy Adams


If you focus on results, you won't see change. If you focus on change, you will see results.


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CKOUDSI617's Photo CKOUDSI617 SparkPoints: (47,190)
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8/10/17 12:04 P

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Man, can I ever relate! Been there (over and over) but you get as many fresh starts as you need. My latest restart was yesterday. Hang in there!
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We CAN do this!


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LE_SIGH's Photo LE_SIGH Posts: 758
8/10/17 10:28 A

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Bah. I was doing well for a while having 1-2 glasses of wine on weekends only. Then we were on vacation for a few blocks during July and had friends visiting/ weekend activities and now I'm having a glass or two of wine a night again. I have definitely put back on a few pounds (would have been more if I wasn't exercising) but I'm finding it very hard to get back into my habit of no weekday drinking. I'm sick to death of seltzer and lemon water and I don't like many other beverages. I've made some herbal iced teas but I need a good replacement.

Blarrrrrgh. Habits are tough.

CKOUDSI617's Photo CKOUDSI617 SparkPoints: (47,190)
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7/28/17 4:31 P

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Thanks so much for these links and the great advice! Have a nice weekend!

We CAN do this!


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AUNA_VISTA's Photo AUNA_VISTA Posts: 3,588
7/27/17 1:53 P

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Given alcohol's habit forming tendencies, you may want to provide yourself with safer alternatives. Give nonalcoholic drinks a try:

duckduckgo.com/?q=nonalcoholic+drink+recip
es&t=ffsb&ia=recipes


Another fun thing to drink are smoothies:

duckduckgo.com/?q=smoothie+recipes&t=ffsb&
ia=recipes


If you want low calorie drinks, look for them. But in the beginning, the most important thing is probably to just to break the cycle of drinking anything that contains alcohol.


"When people ask me what the most important thing is in life, I answer, 'Just Breathe.' "
_Yoko Ono
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CKOUDSI617's Photo CKOUDSI617 SparkPoints: (47,190)
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7/17/17 8:19 P

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In response to a post below. Everyone is different, but I noticed my blood pressures goes up dramatically when I drink alcohol. I am a "no 'off' button", occasional binge drinker. And yes, it definitely does contribute to weight gain in my case. My new motto is: "Best to have NONE than tryna have ONE!" That's what I'm doing now (starting today, that is)...! This one's gonna STICK! Best to all!
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Edited by: CKOUDSI617 at: 7/17/2017 (20:20)
We CAN do this!


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7/17/17 8:14 P

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Sounds interesting! I might try the tonic water/bitters idea (with diet tonic water or diet 7-up or something).

My go-to "mocktail" lately is 4 oz. low sodium V8, dash of habanero or scotch bonnet hot sauce, ground cayenne, turmeric, ginger, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tbsp lime juice, 2 tbsp Bragg's apple cider vinegar and 3-5 drops of Oreganol Super Oil of Oregano. Shake or whisk and BLAMMO! It's quite bracing! Sometimes I blend it with ice and throw in other veggies like spinach, celery, onion, etc. It's DELISH!

AF cheers to YOU!


Edited by: CKOUDSI617 at: 7/17/2017 (20:15)
We CAN do this!


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NHELENE's Photo NHELENE Posts: 1,505
6/8/17 10:33 A

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I've discovered a good "mocktail" that hits a lot of my sweet spots is tonic water with a few dashes of angostura bitters. It doesn't taste like anything else out there, and it still looks and feels like a cocktail. It's also something you can order at a bar if you are out with a group of drinkers but don't want to drink.

A couple of caveats: Bitters do have some alcohol content but it's negligible at this amount, similar to vanilla extract. Also, tonic water is a caloric beverage, so factor it in to your diet as you would a normal soda.



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ROCKICE's Photo ROCKICE SparkPoints: (12,719)
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6/7/17 12:52 P

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Hi there,

I'm not a big wine drinker but I like my beer! I completely understand where you're coming from; I like getting home from work and having a beer or two, or going out with friends and having a few drinks... It adds up. Like you, it's a bad habit. I'm looking to lose 10-15 pounds, am decently active, and it's hard. I'm sure cutting out a large proportion of the beer I drink would make a difference.

I've been marking how many drinks I have each day on a wall calendar, then totaling the number per week and writing it down. My goal is to not have any booze during the week and only a few drinks on the weekends - some weeks are definitely better than others. I find writing down the totals helps because it provides concrete evidence for what I'm actually doing, and it doesn't "disappear" every day like the calories marked in my tracker here (I do track calories, including alcohol).

Good luck!



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LADYSTARWIND's Photo LADYSTARWIND SparkPoints: (85,298)
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6/5/17 1:14 A

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Habits are easier to change than an addiction...and, fortunately, it sounds like at this point, you have a habit.
I'm one who actually enjoys the varying tastes of different wines...so it was an easy habit to get into. One or two glasses a day when I opened a bottle, then maybe a day or two before a different one.... When I made the decision to keep calories in check, it was pretty clear I needed to change that habit!

Establish new rules for yourself. It's difficult to tell your Inner Child that Life Has Changed...but its a good thing too. (one of the few times *Change Is Good*!!) Suggestions might be one bottle for the weekend evening... or two bottles a month... or maybe even start with every third day. Surely you can wait two days, right?? With a busy Life we do what we can though. The great thing is, you get to decide...NOT your Inner Child! And you've already found time to think about changing things, so you are well on your way.
All the best,
patti

Patti
"The only thing we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us."
Gandalf: Lord of the Rings


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ZELDA13's Photo ZELDA13 SparkPoints: (82,104)
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6/1/17 11:51 P

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You may want to do your beverage without the wine. It may just prolong the craving for alcohol. Try it for 3 or 4 days to see how it works. Having that dependency can undermine reaching your goals. Life can be difficult and we may have many struggles, but it is better to face them without dependencies. They often tend to grow and can get out of hand. Better to stop now and avoid it getting out of control.
If that is still a struggle it may be time to get outside help. Talk to your doctor and consider AA. You are worth being the best person you can be. Without questions and without doubts. You deserve to be the best version of yourself.

Alice

"I have not been placed on this earth to fit your mold or conform to what makes you feel more comfortable with my existence." Michelle Steinke

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.


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PSHAN12 Posts: 1
5/24/17 10:55 P

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I find one glass of wine too difficult; better for me to have none. I am drinking lots of water and will allow some sweetened iced tea in the evening. Alcohol is loaded with sugar. I can control the amount of a sweetened drink far better than I can control how much alcohol I'll consume!

CELTICLASSINLA's Photo CELTICLASSINLA SparkPoints: (13,296)
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5/24/17 2:33 P

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Wow - you have your hands full. I have a good friend here who has autistic twins (now age 30 - and special ed today is a lot more than it was in "my" day.) and you have three.

I'm recovering from a recent brain surgery with a few complications - one of which now makes alcohol of any sort (beer, wine or hard liquor) out of the question due to meds that may be lifelong from here on.

Here are a few non-food, non-alcohol ways to unwind and still be available to unwind.

Aroma therapy - depending where you live you can do it with something natural. We are in So. CA and right now have amazing flowers. With flowers come flower arranging- just to have fun. It's something I enjoy now that I can pick them.

Reading light fiction with your favorite music playing. In case your kids interrupt, I can suggest poetry (even haiku) or short stories in lieu of a book - easier to put down and pick up when you need to do it.

PIck out some fun, kid-oriented recipes if the kids are young enough and then engage them. Make them the good for everyone sort of thing. Fresh fruit sorbets...smoothies; mini muffins or cupcakes that can be frozen in batches; get a girl scout (or boy scout) cook book and follow camping recipes. Lots of stuff to make in one pan. This also serves to make the kids more self sufficient.

When you do drink something non-alcoholic make it festive! I drink almost everything out crystal wine goblets (thank you Target).

Have some fun with this. Drop me a spark message for other ideas.



LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 27,037
5/24/17 10:29 A

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" I apologize for making sound like I am an alcoholic"
Well, in your original post, you did say..."I need to stop drinking every day desperately!"

And from your recent post, it also sounds like you are still drinking wine.
Can you at least limit yourself to the weekend?



"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."
~ Randy Pausch

"There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results."
~ Art Turock

"We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved, there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good."
~ 7 Years in T
PKSACTOR's Photo PKSACTOR Posts: 6
5/24/17 9:55 A

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YES!!! I totally agree. I apologize for making sound like I am an alcoholic. As you said, it's cooking dinner, watching tv while relaxing. I am a special education teacher and a mother of 3 children with Autism, and quite often relaxing with a glass of wine is quite enjoyable. :-)

I did last night make my own spritzer. Ice, 4 oz. wine, splash of sprite, some mandarin orange pieces, and I topped it off with La Croix sparkling orange water. TASTY and did the trick.

LE_SIGH's Photo LE_SIGH Posts: 758
5/24/17 7:51 A

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I am struggling with this too. I've gotten in the habit of having several glasses of wine a night, and I'm at the point where I really can't fit wine into my daily calorie budget without feeling hungry. I've also seen my fasting glucose levels rising over the last few years, and while it's still well within the range of normal, that has given me enough of a kick in the butt to reevaluate my habits.

And habits it is. I find that there are situational behaviors - standing in the kitchen cooking dinner, sitting on the couch after dinner - which give me a strong urge to have a glass (or two) of wine. I can't avoid cooking dinner, but I've taken to going to bed earlier or sitting elsewhere in the house so that the association post-meal is less prominent. I do sip on flavored seltzers and herbal tea, but the substitution is less satisfactory than simply avoiding the situation.

It's hard to tell from your original post whether your alcohol use is a chemical dependency or just a diet derailer. It's the latter here, so in the short-term I've made the choice to avoid wine altogether, as one glass often leads to two or three.

The other thing I've struggled with is the idea that special occasions = go ahead and have what you want (re: both food and drink). If I'm honest with myself there is some kind of special something every single month! Very easy to undo several weeks of work in a day with desserts and a couple of glasses of wine. In a different thread one poster said she reminds herself that the food will not be going away and she can choose to have it sometime in the future. I've been keeping that in mind as well - it's rare that someone is serving me a special wine or dessert I can't find anyplace else, so the answer will be no!

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5/23/17 12:10 P

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If it's truly just a habit thing, and you are feeling a sense of lack from missing out on a tasty beverage, then find another beverage you really enjoy. Experiment find a substitute or two.

It's kind of like when people go on extreme diets: eventually, the sense of lack propels them to binge. So perhaps you need to counter any sense of lack when it comes to drinking.

I've never been a big soda fan. But I do sometimes fancy a diet Dr. Pepper or diet root beer, etc. There are sooo many tasty things you can drink - the possibilities are endless. Davinci makes some wonderful sugar free syrups; you can add fruit, etc.

Sometimes I like those lime Perrier sparkling water drinks w/ a dash of sugar free coconut syrup in it. It feels festive and special and it's refreshing. Or I'll have a big glass of Trader Joe's vanilla almond milk and put some SF German Choc Cake syrup in it. Sounds gross but it's good! Lol.

You deserve to eat tasty food and drink tasty beverages. Just experiment and find something that works for YOU, is low cal and not alcohol. I promise, they're out there!
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JENSTRESS's Photo JENSTRESS Posts: 5,403
5/23/17 11:56 A

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Good luck! DO you have some "in person" friends or friends you can text for the support. Not remotely knocking SP, as I love my spark friends, but nothing has helped me more than my best friends being on this journey with me.

PKSACTOR's Photo PKSACTOR Posts: 6
5/23/17 11:49 A

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Thanks so much! That is what this is. A bad habit. I am seeing a counselor, but she has agreed that it is nothing to be hospitalized for. I just need the support of sticking to that 1 glass, or nothing. It tastes so good! LOL

SWEET-PEASMOM's Photo SWEET-PEASMOM Posts: 324
5/23/17 10:23 A

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I'm willing to swap SparkMail with you if you need someone to help hold you accountable. I've been on this journey myself fairly recently and know that it can be very difficult, even if it's not a *physical* addiction.

Please feel free to send me a message, but I agree with the others that AA is a good resource for you. You CAN do this, but not alone. Hang in there, here if you need to chat.

Edited by: SWEET-PEASMOM at: 5/23/2017 (12:29)
"Love chooses to believe the best about people. It gives them the benefit of the doubt. It refuses to fill in the unknowns with negative assumptions. And when our worst hopes are proven to be true, love makes every effort to deal with them and move forward. As much as possible, love focuses on the positive."

THE LOVE DARE


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SLIMMERKIWI's Photo SLIMMERKIWI SparkPoints: (260,200)
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5/22/17 9:18 P



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I would suggest that you discuss this with your Dr. Often people have alcohol dependency (assuming you are referring to alcohol) but don't realize there is a problem in that way. My late husband was an alcoholic, and needed help with it. In his case it was strongly related to OCD and a family history of abuse (not of him, but rather another family member.) These sorts of issues need to be dealt with to deal with the sequale (drinking), if there is anything at the back of it.

If there is a problem your Dr can refer you to a Therapist who deals with dependency issues. It would also be advisable for your Dr to run some tests to see if everything is o.k. medically.

If you can manage to reduce your drinking, that is great. One thing my late hubby's Therapist suggested was to drink another alternative. In his case it was to add some soda to his alcohol and gradually reduce the amount of his wine. (his alcoholism was that bad that a sudden stop was not advised.)

Good luck,
Kris

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I am not a Dr - please check with your qualified Health Professional for a diagnosis and treatment plan


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LOVEXAVIE SparkPoints: (42,884)
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5/22/17 8:50 P

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Dear PKSACTOR,

Drinking is such an individual thing. You need to determine if it's more a bad habit or a more serious problem to address.

Before I began in 2011, I was unhappy being overweight. I would routinely drink a glass or two of wine 5-7 nights a week. Honestly, in my case, I think it was just a bad habit.

After I had my ah-ha moment (horrible photo), I jumped on Spark, looked at how many calories I could have, and decided on the spot I'd rather eat my calories than drink them. I like food way more than alcohol. Plus, getting up earlier to exercise became easier, too.

It was never an issue after that. I occasionally drink now. Sometimes I'm driving home from work and think, "A glass of wine sounds good!" Then I get home, get busy and forget to drink it or a diet Dr. Pepper sounds better. Don't miss it at all.

Think of all the food you can eat if you get rid of those empty calories!!

If it's still an issue, time to consult your dr or AA.




Edited by: LOVEXAVIE at: 5/22/2017 (22:17)
MLAN613 Posts: 19,476
5/22/17 7:20 P

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Please, please, please seek out an AA group in your area. We on SP really cannot provide that type of support.

Meghan in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA


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-JAMES-'s Photo -JAMES- Posts: 11,492
5/22/17 6:38 P

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I'm willing to chat and bounce ideas.

James


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LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 27,037
5/22/17 5:25 P

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Yep!

AA meetings are the way to go... daily if necessary!

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."
~ Randy Pausch

"There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results."
~ Art Turock

"We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved, there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good."
~ 7 Years in T
CELTICLASSINLA's Photo CELTICLASSINLA SparkPoints: (13,296)
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5/22/17 5:03 P

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Assume you mean alcohol since you need "to stop" - if you can't stop on your own then join AA AND go to meetings. You may not think you drink much but if you drink every day and need support to stop it's the best way to focus on that one thing. Many people don't realize that they can be an alcoholic without ever being drunk.

Good luck.

PKSACTOR's Photo PKSACTOR Posts: 6
5/22/17 4:11 P

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Hello All,

I need to stop drinking every day desperately! I am in great need for some support. I am convinced this has led to issues with weight gain and high blood pressure. Anybody up for the task?

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