Cheers to finding balance with alcohol


The sun has finally returned, the beaches have opened and rosé-drinking season is about to begin (if it hasn’t already done so for you!).

There’s something appealing about being able to sit in the Mediterranean sun sipping a drink leisurely but there’s also something unappealing about feeling like a train wreck the next day.

So how can we limit the damage that is sometimes induced by excessive drinking while still enjoying the things we love the most, like a good verre de rosé on the beach?

Unsurprisingly, alcohol is a subject that frequently pops up in my work as it’s an area where my clients struggle to find balance. For a lot of people, one drink leads to ten and along with it comes the hangover, the guilt and the determination to “never drink again”.

But that’s not exactly what most of us want, is it? Most of us would like to enjoy a drink or two on a sunny Sunday afternoon at Mala, Anjuna, La Note Bleue or the Beach Club without feeling like you’ve been hit by a truck the day after. Right?

Balance is a very relative term. For some people it might mean only drinking on weekends or on special occasions, while for others, it’s drinking a glass a day with dinner.


It also depends on your mood and what stage of life you’re in. I’ve gone through phases where I didn’t drink any alcohol for a month, which felt great. But I’ve also done GP weekends where I’ve drank champagne for breakfast, lunch and dinner for four days straight and equally, that felt pretty good at the time.

But, I must confess, I have a few tricks that help me stay somewhat in control along the way and that have proven to be quite successful with the clients I’m coaching, too. I don’t always abide by all of them but here they are …

Make your first drink a water. It feels empowering and it may encourage you to make your second drink a water also. And if this isn’t the case, you’ve at least gotten yourself a little hydrated and experienced what it’s like to be sober in the company you’ve chosen.

Spoiler alert: A few of my clients have had to reassess the people they socialise with as a result of this. Finding people to have fun with when alcohol is involved is easy. Finding those whose company you enjoy even when you’re sober can be a little more tricky at times.

Alternate every alcoholic beverage with a glass of water. This requires some discipline to start but if you can make a habit of this “style” of drinking, you’re saving yourself a lot of headaches … literally. Alcohol-induced headaches are partly the result of dehydration, even though you’re drinking plenty of fluids, you need water.

Eat healthy. I can hear you moaning but drinking alcohol is not an excuse for eating unhealthy food. I know it’s often what people crave but eating a meal that contains a maximum of colourful vegetables will be more helpful to your liver in its attempt to detoxify the booze than shoving down on a pizza or pasta.

If you’re in Sass, go for one of the salads or the salmon entrées as a starter and their delicious salt-crusted seabass with a side of vegetables as a main. You’re likely to find something similar on a beach menu, too!

By the way, eating healthy goes for the day after, too. Speaking of the day after, want to know the best way to recover from a hangover?

Tune in next week for that post. For now, start this rosé season by being more mindful of your liver and your health!

Maddy is the Founder of Nutrition For Naughty People, aimed at helping individuals find a better balance between the things that keep them healthy and the things that make them happy! Any questions? Article first published April 8, 2018.


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