Tag Archives: alcohol

Detox From Alcohol And Other Drugs

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Alcohol is a socially accepted drug and has been for thousands of years. It is such an integral part of so many people's lives that we don't realise how big a presence it has.

 

When legislators make new policies and frame new initiatives against the increasing use of recreational drugs they disapprove of such as cannabis or so called Dance Drugs I imagine they then go to the bar and relax with an alcoholic drink afterwards – satisfied with their efforts to keep drugs off the streets.

 

The reason that this is odd is because Alcohol is more dangerous than almost any drug you could name.

Over-consumption of alcohol is one of the leading preventable causes of death worldwide.

Here is part of a table published in the Wiki showing Deaths In The US

deaths-in-the-US

When an expert and government advisor to the British government on the toxic effects of drugs stated plainly that alcohol was more dangerous than Cannabis this was deemed unacceptable to the British Government minister he reported to and for the cardinal sin of telling the truth he was sacked.

 

And I dare say the government Minister involved had a nice little drink afterwards.

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Alcohol is a natural substance and we have been equipped by evolution to detoxify it. It is a toxin that is produced when fruits and grains or other carbohydrates rot.

 

This may happen on a fruit tree or even in our intestines!

 

There are many types of alcohol found in nature and the one so used in alcoholic drinks is ethanol also called ethyl or grain alcohol.

 

One of the main effects of alcoholic drinks is that alcohol sedates the analytical part of the brain and it is this part of the brain that is on overdrive all day long producing high levels of anxiety and worry in most of us.

Turning to alcohol provides some relief from the ceaseless yammering of the "monkey mind" and allows some relaxation and de-stressing. It is easy to see how this can become a dependency and an addiction.

And that is when society steps in with official "Drying Out" programmes and clinics.

These are run by government and by private clinics where those dependent on alcohol can go on a short term "alcohol fast" and receive some level of support as they go through the withdrawal symptoms.

Some support may be targeted at the feelings and emotions experienced as the alcohol is eliminated from the body; some support may help the body deal with the damaging effect of alcohol on the liver, intestines and other organs.

Oddly, this kind of supervised withdrawal program is often referred to as an "Alcohol Detox". Real detox is different – let me explain.

Real Detox From Alcohol

Real detoxification is the step by step biochemical process that goes on in the cells of your body after drinking alcohol.

Alcohol truly is a poison and so the body has to work hard to render it harmless. To do this involves some chemical magic or alchemy, because a toxic substance has to be transformed into a safe substance.

This magic goes on in every cell of the body but is mainly focussed on the liver which has the unwelcome job.

An enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase starts the task and this turns alcohol into a substance called an aldehyde.

Odd really because aldehydes are dangerous and cause damage in the body. A well known aldehyde is formaldehyde –used to preserve specimens in laboratories and museums.

The aldehyde is then transformed into an acid.

That sounds even more dangerous but the body knows what it's doing and after this piece of alchemy the ex-alcohol molecule has been thoroughly disarmed and can be expelled from the body safely.

That is real detox – explained with the least gobbledegook I could manage.

All this magic comes at a price. The magician needs rabbits and top hats and other props and the liver needs vitamins such as vitamin C, B complex and bioflavonoids as well as minerals such as magnesium, zinc and copper and amino acids.

Without these essential props the liver cannot detox the toxins it grapples with and gets damaged in the process and delivers substances perhaps even more dangerous than the original toxin.

To sum this up – without a whole slew of  amino acids, vitamins and minerals the liver will be damaged in its work of detox.

Real detox is about nourishment– targeted nourishment for the liver and other organs that are doing the "heavy lifting".

Following a real detox programme takes several weeks as you go through a careful process of helping your body heal and repair. I've covered the whole process in my Detox book so I won't go over it again here.

What drives the taking of any drugs is a desire to feel better and the belief that the drugs will produce that better feeling. Anxiety can be tackled in many better ways and relaxation can be learned

When the compulsion to take the drug or alcohol is reduced and feelings of anxiety and tension handled in more creative ways a new dimension of freedom appears that is much more liberating than anaesthetising the most creative part of your brain and getting trapped in chemical dependency.

Detox from alcohol or any other drug is a special targetted process that takes several months to do safely and thoroughly. There are no quick fixes or overnight solutions, just the slow healing work of nature.

 

photo credits  wiki

 

Alcohol Detox and Addiction – Some Overlooked Factors

Are you getting  signals that you need to take a break from alcohol?

The signals don't arrive by SMS but in your feelings. So if you drink alcohol every day or are feeling run down, fatigued and having symptoms such as aching muscles or digestive problems then a detox hint can be decoded from the signals.

With daily use or occasional binging, harm is being done to the brain and to the liver, stomach and kidneys.

Like a boxer getting back into the ring every day, you might be denying that any harm is happening.

The boxer is taking the damage and getting, "punch drunk" while you may be denying the damage and getting "alcohol drunk".

Every part of the body is involved when alcohol is consumed simply because it gets into the blood stream and all of the the alcohol (or other drug) really ends up in the liver.

The Liver is the central organ for detox so it has to grab every molecule of alcohol it can and convert it to a less harmful molecule which is not going to cause any damage to the body.

Cycling each tiny amount of alcohol through a process of chemical transformation is complicated and we can do it but it comes at a cost.

For every molecule of alcohol to be detoxed and transformed nutrient molecules have to be used.

When you bake a cake you need flour and water and other ingredients and when you detox you need multiple vitamins especially B complex and minerals as well as protein for amino acids to help deal with the alcohol.

When "alcoholics" are taken to a facility "to detox" they are simply left to recover from the effects of drinking too much and not given any help to process the alcohol through their system. This is often wrongly called a detox or detoxification centre.

Really this is just a "drying out" or recovery centre. Then they'll start all over again.

Real detox is a careful step by step process where the nutrients the liver and the rest of the body, need are provided.

In addition when working with an addiction, emotional and spiritual support and counselling is required. Addiction is not just a habit or a fad, it is a sign that something deeper is missing from the person's life. If the addicted person – and I don't like the word, "patient", or "user",  is helped to gain insight and helped either with Cognitive Behaviour therapy or many other possible awareness therapies then they have a chance of putting the addiction behind them for good.

Addiction is a sign that something is missing and until that is addressed the addict is vulnerable to a downward slide to deeper levels of trouble and damage to their life.

Notional therapy is essential to work with the physical aspects of the problems but counselling and awareness is important to work with the non  physical part of addiction.

Have you put an addiction behind you? How did you do it?