What Is Alcoholism?
The term “alcoholism” refers to a disease known as alcohol dependence syndrome. Alcoholism is drinking alcoholic beverages at a level that interferes with physical health, mental health, and social, family, or job responsibilities. It is a type of drug addiction where, there is both physical and mental dependence on alcohol. Alcoholism begins with binge drinking, turns into alcohol abuse and finally takes the form of dependence. It is advisable to recognize signs of abuse and start with home remedies for alcoholism to control the situation.
Binge drinking is having at least five drinks in one session for men and four for women. It involves drinking to get drunk. It is the most common among young people, under age 21. Alcohol abuse refers to a situation where someone continues to drink in spite of continued social, interpersonal or legal difficulties. Alcohol abuse can result in missing time at school or work, neglecting child or household responsibilities or trouble with the law.
Drinkers become alcohol dependent when they begin to experience craving for alcohol, loss of control of their drinking, withdrawal symptoms when they are not drinking and increased tolerance to alcohol. Dependence may lead to alcohol related illnesses and blackouts after drinking episodes. Long-term use of alcohol decreases life expectancy and produces nervous, digestive, cardiovascular, musculoskeletal, and endocrine system disorders.
Causes Of Alcoholism
There is no specific cause for alcoholism. A number of factors may influence its development. Some such factors are:
• Social and cultural factors
Media glorifies alcohol
• Psychological factors
Low self esteem
Problem in relationships
Emotional pain or instability
Need to relieve anxiety
Inadequate coping mechanisms
• Genetic factors
Alcoholism tends to run in families and research indicates that genetics play a role in developing alcohol problems and that certain genes may increase the risk of alcoholism
Symptoms Of Alcoholism
• Craving alcohol
• Drinking in isolation
• Not being able to control the amount they drink
• Gulping the first few drinks
• Hiding alcohol in unusual places
• Sudden interest in or preoccupation with drinking
• Memory lapses or black outs
• Increased tolerance to the effects of alcohol
• Getting withdrawal signs like a sudden shake, anxiety, sweating, getting chills, or having nausea, if they don’t drink.
• Liver diseases
• Denying that there is excessive dependence on alcohol.
Natural home remedies of Alcoholism
Some of the effective home remedies for alcoholism are:
• Apples, bananas, grapes, dates, lemons, orange juice, celery juice, carrot juice, bitter gourd leaves extract help flush out toxins from the body and reduce the urge to consume alcohol.
• Consuming buttermilk on an empty stomach is quite useful in treating alcoholism.
• Sugar candies or other tasty food items also suppress the temptation to consume alcohol.
• Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) is often used to treat minor liver problems which may develop due to alcoholism.
• Kudzu (Pueraria lobata) which is used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat alcohol abuse, might help reduce cravings.
• Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) is used traditionally for liver-related problems, although there is evidence that it helps alcohol withdrawal symptoms. It is often combined with milk thistle.
These home remedies for alcoholism should be used in conjunction with counseling and peer groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous, for maximum effect.
Diet For Alcoholism
Chronic use of alcohol decreases one’s appetite and keeps the body from absorbing vital nutrients. This may result in mineral and vitamin deficiencies. Therefore consumption of a nutritious diet as well as supplements such as vitamin B complex, vitamin C, thiamine, selenium, magnesium, and zinc may be on order. Moreover a combination of amino acids; carnitine, glutamine, and glutathione, may help reduce cravings, blood sugar fluctuations, and stress related to alcohol use. To lower craving for alcohol and to detoxify the system, a person may live on only fruit juice for 10-12 days, later whole grains, cereals, green vegetables and fruits should be added. Heavy, fatty and oily foods should be avoided.
Home remedies for alcoholism and the recommended diet should be used under the care of a qualified doctor. If the patient has other medical complications, then the remedies and the diet should be checked to ensure that they don’t work against the ongoing medication.