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Primal cure for alcohol addiction

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  • #16
    I think nutritional support (ie, paleo) can be an important part of recovery from alcoholism, even if it's not a cure.

    In the boreal First Nations communities that I work with, there's a lot of interest in traditional foods and the links between carbohydrate and alcohol metabolism. There's not much firm research yet, but plenty of folks suspect that tendencies toward alcoholism are linked with issues with carbohydrate metabolism, so a return to traditional foods can help in both prevention and recovery. Good luck!

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    • #17
      I don't know if this will make sense. I gave up smoking and drinking nightly, by going to a health retreat. That's where a naturopath pointed out I don't eat meals, I eat sandwiches. So when I came back, I sustained the abstinence from alcohol and smoking (knowing drinking would make me lose my resolve re smoking) and I started primal. It was the combination of the "cleaness" that forced me to keep going, whereas for the previous years I would be hardpressed to think of 3 days in a year I didnt go to bed drunk.

      When I fell off the drinking, I fell off primal. For a good year. Now, as I struggle to adhere to primal again, I know alcohol is part of that - I cannot deal with hangovers and maintain the primal food. So a good part for me is that primal means alcohol free, it is clean and knowing I need to stick to primal helps me just dismiss the urge to drink. Bad part is - I fall off (usually stress leads to self sabotage) and I eat crap. So they are associated for me. I think the willpower to eat clean, the clear head, the energy, being less anxious, having more stable moods when primal, maybe even lack of carb cravings, makes it easier to refrain from drinking. My primal periods are the only periods I don't drink.

      Sorry if this doesnt make sense. I wish you luck with the struggle and glad to swap tips anytime.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Knifegill View Post
        No, I quit long before fixing my eating. I drank to die. Drank until I blacked out every night, woke up, begged for enough money to do it again, and woke up disappointed I was still alive the next day. Black velvet, vodka, infinite beer at parties, Steel Reserve 411, Old English, etc. Walking around town half naked at 2:00 AM, cops always hauling me in. Got arrested enough times, they finally offered me rehab. Lived there a month, let them reprogram my brain, and have lived well since. Sober 8 years. One relapse, but I had the tools to realize what went wrong and it hasn't happened since. I never knew all those things I never knew until I was forced to learn them. Did you know some people actually make plans and set goals for their lives instead of just being alive? It's really weird.
        Knifegill: Your situation/story is humbling and very inspirational. You must be a very strong person to have confronted these challenges. It takes courage and action to make changes and many people never succeed. Thank you for sharing this with us. We never quite know the shoes that someone else has walked in. Best/Lu
        ----------------------------------------
        F, 48, 5'10"
        Start Date: 25-06-12 @ 161lbs
        Goal Reached: 30-09-12 @ 143lb. Now bouncing between 145lb - 149lb. I'd like less bounce and more consistency :-)

        Started Cross Fit 20.12.12 ---- Can't wait to submit my success story on the 1st anniversary of starting primal.

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        • #19
          Yes, I have. Went through over 1 GAL of liquor a week even while on Primal (no weight loss, duh! Wonder why? HA!)

          I stumbled onto Allen Carr's book Easyway to stop drinking and quit after finishing the book (the second time). NO cravings whatsoever and I have NO IDEA what to do with all my spare time and energy.

          No, I am in no way associated with the author or book and actually found the suggestion here on MDA somewhere, but it has saved my life.

          I wish you all the luck in the world with this!

          If I can find the post again, I'll come back and link it.

          EDITED TO ADD LINK: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum...tml#post741632

          I need to send Jo a PM and thank her! Thanks for reminding me!
          Last edited by Navajo; 03-26-2013, 03:48 AM.

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          • #20
            I'm also a heavy social drinker -- 3 nights a week at the bar getting drunk. It was the desire to keep Primal that prompted me to quit drinking in January (not forever, just January). I've done sober months before but this time was a lot easier. Some of it was probably diet but a big part of it was that I my life was a little more food-centric -- shop for food, prepared food, eat food, wash dishes. But that's the point of being an animal, isn't it?

            Anothing thing: I don't accept the AA model. If it works for you, fine. But I have some problems. First, as adults we learn to accept that not everything's black and white. But in AA, a middle-aged woman who needs her evening glass of wine is an "alcoholic" the same as dude who blacks out nightly.

            And the word "alcoholic" is abused as well. It's a clinical word that means literally addicted to alcohol, i.e. you go through DT's if you stop drinking. There are a ton of people who have drinking dependencies who aren't "alcoholics", it's time to stop the labelling.

            In a book on Rational Recovery, I took a test that had me at "low-level dependency". Fair enough. "Low level" sounds good (and right) but I'm not totally off the hook because of that "dependency" part. But imagine -- levels of dependency. Under the AA-model, I wasn't allowed that. It's all or nothing. Admit to "alcoholism", submit to a "higher power", change your life completely around or.....live in "denial".

            Anyhow February's here and I'm looking at sprinking back in some social drinking and I'm proceeding with caution. Although I really enjoyed my time away from alcohol, after three weeks I was getting a little bored (I'm single and all my friends drink). So here I go. But at least I know that I can be content without out and I don't have to worry about being a big, bad "alcoholic".

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Rojo View Post
              I'm also a heavy social drinker -- 3 nights a week at the bar getting drunk. It was the desire to keep Primal that prompted me to quit drinking in January (not forever, just January). I've done sober months before but this time was a lot easier. Some of it was probably diet but a big part of it was that I my life was a little more food-centric -- shop for food, prepared food, eat food, wash dishes. But that's the point of being an animal, isn't it?

              Anothing thing: I don't accept the AA model. If it works for you, fine. But I have some problems. First, as adults we learn to accept that not everything's black and white. But in AA, a middle-aged woman who needs her evening glass of wine is an "alcoholic" the same as dude who blacks out nightly.

              And the word "alcoholic" is abused as well. It's a clinical word that means literally addicted to alcohol, i.e. you go through DT's if you stop drinking. There are a ton of people who have drinking dependencies who aren't "alcoholics", it's time to stop the labelling.

              In a book on Rational Recovery, I took a test that had me at "low-level dependency". Fair enough. "Low level" sounds good (and right) but I'm not totally off the hook because of that "dependency" part. But imagine -- levels of dependency. Under the AA-model, I wasn't allowed that. It's all or nothing. Admit to "alcoholism", submit to a "higher power", change your life completely around or.....live in "denial".

              Anyhow February's here and I'm looking at sprinking back in some social drinking and I'm proceeding with caution. Although I really enjoyed my time away from alcohol, after three weeks I was getting a little bored (I'm single and all my friends drink). So here I go. But at least I know that I can be content without out and I don't have to worry about being a big, bad "alcoholic".
              Most folks who come into AA do not accept the AA model for various and sundry reasons which explains why the AA success rate is in the single digits. I do have a different view regarding AA's definition of an alcoholic. The 1st essay talks about the difference between a "mere habit" and "the beginning of a fatal progression". Problem drinkers fall into the first category and alcoholics fit into the second. You are the only person who can make that determination for yourself. If you are not sure, the 1st essay suggests trying controlled drinking which is what you have decided to do. This may work great for you if you are not an alcoholic. However, you may find that once you start drinking, you can not stop or you are very unhappy if you do. You may not want to drink first thing in the morning, but your first thought is about drinking. You may get drunk at the most inappropriate times and make very poor decisions, especially when it comes to driving while intoxicated. If you have these problems, you may come to the conclusion that you have crossed the line from mere habit to the beginning of a fatal progression. As the 1st essay says, you may be just "slightly more than a potential alcoholic". If this is the case, you have to admit it to yourself and not drink, period.

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              • #22
                I am an alcoholic and have hbp. When I drink, even a little it lowers my bp by a significant amount(like 20-30). Works better than meds. What do I do?

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                • #23
                  I am 10 years clean and sober, through AA. I was a raging drunk and was dying very quickly from progressive alcoholism. I drank ethanol, it was the strongest and the most efficient at wiping me out. I haven't had a drink since my first AA meeting. AA isn't for everyone, but it has certainly worked for me.

                  Diet, primal or otherwise, is never going to cure and the massive illness that is true alcoholism. However, a sound primal diet and treatment for any other underlying depression is helpful. I have taken both orthadox medication and naturopathic treatments to help keep me stable in recovery. I have also been in therapy for 10 solid years and have done this alongside a 12 step programme.

                  I haven't had cravings for alcohol for years and years and don't even think about drinking, but the underlying thoughts that had me gripped by the booze come and go. I need to treat these, and do so my continuing to work my programme and my trying to look after my mind and body the best way I can.

                  I do remember when I was detoxing the overwhelming sugar cravings as I was trying to replace the sugar from alcohol with packets and packets of chocolate biscuits. I also smoked like a train for the first 7 months of sobriety and then managed to give this up too.

                  Good luck, there is a way out, I hope you can find what works for you.

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Artbuc View Post
                    Most folks who come into AA do not accept the AA model for various and sundry reasons which explains why the AA success rate is in the single digits.
                    I'm leary of this. The system didn't fail you, you failed the system. If the numbers are that low, then maybe it's not so great. Sure there are people who've used it to great effect. Cheers to them.

                    I do have a different view regarding AA's definition of an alcoholic. The 1st essay talks about the difference between a "mere habit" and "the beginning of a fatal progression". Problem drinkers fall into the first category and alcoholics fit into the second. You are the only person who can make that determination for yourself. If you are not sure, the 1st essay suggests trying controlled drinking which is what you have decided to do. This may work great for you if you are not an alcoholic. However, you may find that once you start drinking, you can not stop or you are very unhappy if you do. You may not want to drink first thing in the morning, but your first thought is about drinking. You may get drunk at the most inappropriate times and make very poor decisions, especially when it comes to driving while intoxicated. If you have these problems, you may come to the conclusion that you have crossed the line from mere habit to the beginning of a fatal progression. As the 1st essay says, you may be just "slightly more than a potential alcoholic". If this is the case, you have to admit it to yourself and not drink, period.
                    That all sounds right. I don't drink every day, nor in the morning. I live in San Francisco and never drive. I rarely drink alone -- I'm a bar guy.

                    However, I moved from twice a week to three times to four times a week. For one thing, it was draining my bank account. Second, I could manage my life -- but only just. I went to work, paid my bills, etc... but there wasn't much energy left to move ahead. Third, I'm a depressive and alcohol doesn't help that.

                    In the last few years, I turned forty, my last single drinking buddy moved away, my job got awful and I was going out just wanting it to be over. I couldn't get drunk fast enough. I didn't want to "party" I just wanted to be unconsious. That's how when I knew it was time to re-appraise.

                    As I mentioned, I'm proceeding with caution, trying to grab the booze tiger by the tail.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by Rojo View Post
                      However, I moved from twice a week to three times to four times a week. For one thing, it was draining my bank account. Second, I could manage my life -- but only just. I went to work, paid my bills, etc... but there wasn't much energy left to move ahead. Third, I'm a depressive and alcohol doesn't help that.
                      I will tell you what you already know. Having a few drinks and having fun with your friends is great. Drinking to self-medicate for depression and drinking for the sole purpose of escape to black-out land is highly self-destructive. Good-luck. I think you will need it.

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                      • #26
                        It's the end of the work day, and I'm tired and fuzzy brained, but I wanted to respond to this now before I forget. I can supply more information later when I'm more lucid and functional if there's interest.

                        In a word - baclofen (Baclofen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). Dr. Olivier Ameisen cured himself of alcoholism by using baclofen and wrote a book about it:
                        Amazon.com: Heal Thyself: A Doctor at the Peak of His Medical Career, Destroyed by Alcohol--and the Personal Miracle That Brought Him Back (9780374532208): Olivier Ameisen: Books

                        There is a whole forum dedicated to people using baclofen to get control over their drinking:
                        Topamax, Campral, Naltrexone, Baclofen, other meds - My Way Out Forums

                        2 1/2 years ago I went to my general practitioner armed with documentation and got myself a prescription for baclofen. It took awhile to titrate up, but after a few months I was disgusted by the thought of alcohol (after having been a nightly drinker for years). I didn't want to be completely abstinent, and I dropped down to a maintenance dose, which allows drinking to be a choice, which it didn't feel like it was before.
                        That's the super short version. It changed my life for the better in a lot of ways.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Artbuc View Post
                          If you knew even the slightest bit about alcoholism you would realize how stupid and unanswerable your last question is.
                          Stop being narrow-minded and genuinely think about the question. Anything you do is capable of having addictive properties in a distressed state. I could go become addicted to kicking rocks if I did it every time I felt distressed. If one builds an addiction to alcohol in a distressed state, as they often do, it makes that a crutch you cling to. The same can be said of eating disorders. I actually find this interesting and relevant to the topic: Akrasia, or Why You Act Against Your Own Better Judgment | Mark's Daily Apple

                          "The fact that a taste of chocolate can provoke a wild lust for more chocolate, or that once cigarette renews the addiction, does not mean that the presence of chocolate or nicotine in the blood creates a craving. Rather, it is that an organism in an unstable state perceives the availability of something which promises to partially restore the desired stability."
                          Make America Great Again

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Rasputina
                            Derpamix, have you ever had an alcohol problem? If not, then you can't understand. It's actually not like smoking.
                            I actually have reached out to alcohol several times in a distressed state, so I know the need it feeds and the addiction it can cause. However, it was just that, something I went to, without even thinking, because it promised to restore stability when I needed it most.

                            Do you know of any happy alcoholics? Patterns start to form, but there is always an underlining issue that can be resolved.
                            Make America Great Again

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                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Derpamix View Post
                              I actually have reached out to alcohol several times in a distressed state, so I know the need it feeds and the addiction it can cause. However, it was just that, something I went to, without even thinking, because it promised to restore stability when I needed it most.

                              Do you know of any happy alcoholics? Patterns start to form, but there is always an underlining issue that can be resolved.
                              Sorry, but you do not have a clue. Reaching out to alcohol several times does not give you even the slightest glimpse into the world of an alcoholic.

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                              • #30
                                Did you even read this? Akrasia, or Why You Act Against Your Own Better Judgment | Mark's Daily Apple

                                I don't believe I know everything, but your irrational emotionally driven responses, while blaming everything on a substance, seemingly giving no blame on yourself, while failing to clarify anything gives some credibility to Zach's original post.

                                No one forces you to drink, it's something you only fight with yourself about.
                                Make America Great Again

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