Many people crack open a beer or bottle of wine to calm down after a long day, but is this the best long-term solution for stress? If we consider the recent mom wine culture/trend, we can see the long-term effects of relying on alcohol to relax. While it might seem common to drink for relaxation, and you may not think you could ever be the person who becomes too dependent on alcohol, in reality, alcoholism or alcohol use disorder can happen to anyone. If you want to change up your nightly routine and find healthier ways to cope, we’re sharing some of the best alcohol alternatives to relax that can help.
How to Relax Without Alcohol: Alternatives to Consider
Although we all need ways to unwind after a long day, if you’ve found yourself reaching for the bottle as your source of comfort, then something needs to change. For many people, alcoholism began with relying on alcohol as a source of comfort or support, which not only contributed to an emotional dependence but eventually a physical one. Fortunately, there are plenty of alternatives to alcohol to relax that won’t pose long-term risks.
Magnesium is a mineral and nutrient that your body needs to regulate muscle and nerve function, blood sugar levels, and blood pressure, as well as to make protein, increase bone mineral density, and stabilize DNA. Magnesium can help maintain a healthy heart rhythm and is involved in the regulation of cholesterol production, as well. Most importantly, magnesium is a natural muscle relaxer that can help reduce aches, pains, and inflammation, as well as anxiety and stress. For these reasons, we encourage you to talk to your doctor about taking magnesium as a way to unwind without alcohol.
And, speaking of natural alcohol alternatives to relax, there are also plenty of teas to choose from that promote relaxation. They can even help with sleep, which is usually affected by stress and anxiety. Some popular teas that can take the edge off without alcohol include mint teas, chamomile teas, lavender teas, rose teas, and matcha.
Reminder: Always speak to your healthcare provider before incorporating any new supplements into your diet, especially if you have any underlying conditions, are taking any medication, or are pregnant.
Mindfulness meditation is a technique that involves paying attention to the present moment without expectations or judgment. This practice can help reduce stress and anxiety and promote relaxation while connecting you to the moment. You can meditate for as long as you want, making it a practice that could easily be incorporated into your daily routine.
Exercise is a well-known stress reducer because it boosts serotonin levels, releases endorphins (which are natural mood boosters), and offers people an outlet for stress and built-up tension. Some fun and simple forms of exercise you can take up to relax include yoga, jogging, swimming, or really any physical activity that you enjoy.
Spend Time With Loved Ones
Spending time with friends and family is one of the easiest and most effective ways to reduce stress and boost our mood. Especially if you’ve developed a habit of coming home and immediately needing to spend time away from people, it can help you to stop your drinking and instead find ways to relax with your loved ones. Not only can this prevent you from feeling the need to drink to calm down, but it can also contribute to your relationships with your spouse, children, parents, and others.
Spend Time Outdoors
One of the simplest and most common ways to relax without alcohol is to spend time outdoors. Spending time in nature can be a great way to reduce stress and improve mood. You can go for a walk, hike, or just sit outside and enjoy the view.
Consider Non-Alcoholic Alternatives
Additional alcohol alternatives to relax that you can try are non-alcoholic drinks, otherwise referred to as “mocktails.” Some examples include non-alcoholic beer, kombucha, malta, and alcohol-free spirits that you can create different recipes with, such as Seedlip, Lyre’s, or Ritual Zero. You’ll find a wide variety of winter and summer non-alcoholic drink recipes online that you can also try. While non-alcoholic alternatives aren’t helpful for everyone, they may be what you need to wean off of alcohol, and you can experience the same feelings as when you enjoy an alcoholic drink.
Have a Drinking Problem?
Unfortunately, many people never figure out how to unwind without alcohol and end up becoming dependent on the substance for their mental well-being. In the end, however, long-term alcohol abuse can quickly become an addiction, which can affect one’s health, finances, job, and relationships.
If you or someone you care about has developed an alcohol addiction, our Banyan Texas rehab is here to help. We offer alcohol detox and addiction treatment on a residential level of care to support clients with severe substance use disorders. Our services are led by the best and most qualified medical team of doctors, nurses, and therapists to ensure clients receive well-rounded support.