By Peter A. Heslin on
Every year most of us make New Year’s resolutions. Eat healthier. Exercise regularly. Invest more in valued relationships. Learn a language. And so on. Often they are the same resolutions as last year.
Why do our resolutions often so swiftly wither away?
A prime culprit in this annual rollercoaster of optimism and disappointment is overconfidence in the power of our intentions.
The excitement of a new year (and perhaps the fruit of celebrating a little too hard) cloud remembering a hard fact of life: good intentions readily evaporate without a trace in the face of everyday experiences such as exhaustion, temptation and long-standing habits.
Fortunately, academic research on goal-setting can help. Studies over several decades have...
By Dallas Arrowsmith on
I challenged myself recently to take up the good cause of Dry July - a fundraising campaign to trade in your social drinking habits for a month, and to make some healthy lifestyle changes.
First and foremost, Dry July is a great cause. This program gave me the opportunity to support a community that needs it, and the funds go directly to benefit the lives of people affected by cancer. Cancer affects all people in some way at some point in our lives – face it, we all know someone who has been affected.
Secondly, there are personal benefits. Where do I begin - the feeling, the money, and the habit?
Let me start with the feeling, I feel great! I sleep better, I am finding it easier to wake each morning and weekends feel longer. The money...
By ABC Life / By Flip Prior on
On the first day of my abstinent year — having quaffed cheap prosecco while partying until midnight in a kind of panic — I woke up with a nasty hangover.
It was the anxiety-inducing kind necessitating a dark room, cold shower, swim at the beach and hot salty chips to restore any semblance of humanity.
A month into my year without alcohol, I feel worlds away from that wretched creature who woke up to 2019 cracking open one bloodshot, puffy eye and cursing her appalling life choices.
The things I love about being booze free include, better sleep, feeling calmer and dropping 4 kilograms without trying too hard.
But as I celebrate this first significant milestone, I won't sugar-coat it and pretend it's been a complete walk in the park.
By ABC Life on
Most Australian adults will have at least an occasional drink and about half of us are regular drinkers.
But it's easy to underestimate the health impacts, and experts believe there is too much risky drinking.
What is alcohol?
The alcohol in drinks is called ethanol (also known as ethyl alcohol). It is made from sugars in grains, fruits and vegetables.
It can be produced in various strengths:
- 5 per cent (full-strength beer and cider)
- 12-14 per cent (wine)
- 18 per cent (fortified wines like port or sherry)
- 37-40 per cent (spirits like vodka, whisky and gin)
In recent years, the strength of both white and red wines has increased.
What is a standard drink?
A standard drink is one that contains 10 grams of alcohol.
The size will vary,...
By Alana Wulff on
There’s nothing quite like going out with your mates for a big night or two (or three), but there’s also nothing as satisfying as realising you’ve managed to sidestep another time-wasting, hangry hangover.
Making the decision to hit the reset button and take a break from booze isn’t just liberating, it’s a sure-fire way to save your cash and get your mental and physical health back on track. So, with Dry July just around the corner, here are just some of the best reasons to contemplate hitting snooze on the booze.
Your Sleep Improves
Is there anything more annoying than waking up at 3am because those delicious yet devious wines and beers have messed with your sleep patterns? Drinking, especially if you’re indulging on a regular basis, can...
By Paula Goodyear on
Signing up for Dry July - or just need more dry days in your drinking week? Either way, neuropsychologist Dr Nicola Gates can help. A researcher with the University of NSW and author of A Brain for Life, Gates also has a track record of helping people manage their alcohol use - including workers in industries like aviation that demand strict sobriety during working hours.
But whether the goal is an alcohol free month or the two alcohol free days each week recommended in Australia's alcohol consumption guidelines she suggests first getting a handle on how much you really drink.
"It's something most of us underestimate," says Gates, recalling the time she asked a group of people in one of her mindful drinking seminars to pour what they...
By Dry July Foundation on
Carry on your good work from July through to August and beyond. Here are some practical tips if you want to try to cut down on the amount of alcohol you’re drinking:
- Before you start drinking, quench your thirst with a non-alcoholic drink
- Drink slowly – have a drink of water with your alcoholic drink
- Make every second drink non-alcoholic – this will help space out your drinks.
- Eat food when you’re drinking, but avoid salty foods – these make you thirstier.
- Try to dilute your alcoholic drinks – for example, a shandy (beer with lemonade) or a wine spritzer (wine with mineral water).
- Designate at least two alcohol-free days a week
- Know your standard drinks – buy an alcohol measure for at home
- One standard drink equals:
- 285 ml of...
By The Mindful Mocktail on
This combination of strawberry and basil refreshing and healthy, plus it tastes great.
3 strawberries, chopped
4-6 basil leaves (depending on your taste preference)
Juice of half a lime
1 tsp sweetener of choice
Sparkling water or kombucha
- Add strawberries, basil, lime and sweetener (if using) to a glass.
- Muddle together for about 1 minute. If you don’t have a muddler, use a wooden spoon or similar - anything that will ‘smoosh’ all the ingredients together!
- Top with sparkling water or kombucha and stir.
- Add ice and garnish and Enjoy!
For more recipes like this, follow @themindfulmocktail on Instagram
By The Mindful Mocktail on
This pretty, refreshing drink is perfect for one or a crowd. It looks so pretty served in a jug for guests, just increase the quantities.
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup sweetener of your choice
1/3 cup rose dried rose petals (found in health food shops)
- Add water and sweetener to a small saucepan and dissolve over medium-high heat. Don’t let it boil - you don’t want to water to evaporate!
- Turn heat to low, add rose petals and stir.
- Leave on low until the colour fades from the petals. It will only take a few minutes. You can remove from the heat and leave it longer to seep if you want a deeper flavour/colour.
- Strain and leave to cool.
- Place 2 TBS rose syrup into each glass.
- Add 3 TBS...