Cutting Alcohol in the New Year Can Lead to Better Sleep and Weight Loss

With the new year right in front of us, it’s time to think about what resolutions you could make to improve your life.  Sleeping better is, of course, one of our favorites.  But, that’s rather broad because there are a lot of different reasons why you might not be sleeping the proper amount (seven to eight hours per night).  One resolution we suggest that could lead to a big change in your life is to cut back the amount of alcohol you drink.

Alcohol is a depressant, and can actually help you fall asleep faster.  However, the sleep you’re getting is not very good.  According to the National Sleep Foundation, drinking causes the following problems with your slumber:

  • It can interrupt your circadian rhythms because it leads to wakefulness in the middle of the night
  • It blocks REM sleep, leading to less productive sleep
  • It can aggravate breathing problems
  • It can lead to extra bathroom trips during the night, interrupting sleep patterns

Other than helping you sleep better, cutting back on alcohol can lead to a wide variety of side benefits.  One extremely popular resolution for many people every year is to lose weight.  Cutting back on alcohol can take care of that for you.  Not only are you avoiding the empty calories from alcoholic drinks, poor sleep can lead to cravings for junk food.  If you’re sleeping better as a result of less alcohol, you may eliminate some of those cravings, and thus lose weight.