At the start of any new year, many of us make commitments to ourselves for healthier, happier living. Some of those commitments stick and some of them fade away. One such commitment that has gained traction and attention is “Dry January”, where people pledge to eliminate the consumption of alcohol from their daily lives for the entire month of January.
Dry January has become a great way to kick-start new year’s resolutions, detox from the holiday season, and participate in a new health challenge with friends. Many people also see additional health benefits after completing Dry January.
Specifically, in 2020, for a wide variety of reasons, hepatology physicians saw an up-tick in alcohol dependency, misuse, and alcohol-related emergencies, and liver disease. These alarming new trends can have serious impacts on the health and wellbeing of many.
“As a liver disease physician, I encourage all my patients to examine their relationship with alcohol and its impact on their lives.” MNGI Digestive Health physician, Dr. Kevin Rank explains, “There are several personal benefits to this including better sleep, weight loss, and increased energy, with some data even suggesting it may result in an improvement in liver inflammation. This aside, I think the most appealing and meaningful impact of undergoing "dry January" is to re-evaluate how you approach and use alcohol.”
The American Liver Foundation also encourages people to participate in Dry January as a way to positively impact health and take better care of a person’s liver.
This lifestyle change does not just need to take place at the beginning of a new year. Any time is a good time to consider taking a day, a week, a month, or even a year off from alcohol – your liver and body will thank you for it!
Learn more about MNGI’s liver disease specialty care.
Learn more about MNGI provider, Dr. Kevin Rank.