The S-Life Guide to Alternative Alcohol
Picture this: you’re suddenly not so keen on having a night of hard drinking, or drinking whatsoever. You’ve decided that tomorrow morning, you want to wake up feeling fresh, glowy and oh so alive, ready to take on the day and turn those thoughts into real life things (without the mental fog of one too many the night before). Not so much feeling this way today? You very well may one day, and we’re here to guide you.
We aren’t ever known to shy away from a celebratory glass or two (or four), but there most definitely are whole weeks when we consciously decide to give our bodies a break and opt for a quench with more medicinal qualities.
That’s not to say that red wine from frequent time to frequent time isn’t medicinal — it most certainly is (antioxidants, fermentation, and polyphenols, anybody?). But when it comes to mixing a glass of red or white or pink with harder stuff, our liver kind of freaks out.
But, what really happens to the body when too much alcohol is consumed? For starters, your hard-working liver can’t filter through that which isn’t needed (aka, proper detox takes a halt). Breaking down alcohol is only one of 500 of the liver’s multitude of functions, and excessive drinking quickly destroys your hard-working liver enzymes, resulting in chronic inflammation (showing up as puffiness, aches and pains, and skin breakouts). Alcohol also acts as a depressant to your central nervous system, meaning your brain cells begin to communicate at a slower rate than normal (lingering into the next day). Your precious brain’s neurons then can’t optimally control heart rate and breathing, causing fluctuating body temperature and heart palpitations (oxygen is a good thing!).
So, when the time and day comes for you to choose to have a more balanced weekend, here are our all-time favorite sub-ins for the hard stuff (all totally liver-loving and glow-promoting)...
Originating in the far east around 2,000 years ago, the Chinese have been dubbing kombucha as the "Immortal Health Elixir" ever since — we can attest to that! Kombucha just makes you feel so...alive! And bubbly inside, in all the right ways that a liquor simply can't. And truth be told, booch does give you a bit of a buzz! Consume a medicinal glass on a nearly empty stomach, and you'll be feeling clean and clear and (sorry, have to go there...) under control. Disclaimer: if you plan to be drinking booch at night, be sure you're opting for a glass free of black or green teas. Many today are made with a base of caffeine, so unless you plan to be up all night, sip wisely.
Kombucha w/ Spagyrics ~
Same same as the above, only this time, sprinkle in a few drops of alchemy! We began doing this months ago, and you guys...it is such magic. Spagyrics are herbal medicine tinctures produced by alchemical procedures involving fermentation, distillation and the extraction of mineral components from the ash of the plant. We love Organic Unity— particularly their Tulsi Holy Basil in a GTs Multi-Green. Mmmmm superpowers.
Though kava is essentially an herbal tea, it is also incredibly powerful and highly sedative if taken in too large of a quantity. Although, the taste is pretty particular — almost muddy, and produces a bit of a numbing effect on the tongue, just for a few seconds after consumption — so I'm assuming you won't want to be guzzling it up by the gallon. Kava is a Polynesian shrub of the pepper family, and when ground and churned into a tea, it promotes a delicious calming effect, much like red wine but without the sugar hangover. Although, there is such a thing as a "kava hangover" so take it easy! Kava is intended to be consumed ceremonially, and if you hit up a local kava bar in say, Fiji or on the Big Island of Hawaii, you'll be expected to honor the plant, the Earth from which it came, and the feeling in which it's about to provoke inside you. This is powerful stuff. We love Kavasutra in NYC to get our fix.
Sparkling Beauty Water ~
When we want to get our Beauty Water Cocktail on without the alcoholic element, we shake this Beauty up the same exact way, only with Beauty Water Cocktail mix, sparkling water, and a little bit of lime juice. Poured over ice or blended into a slushie, this drink never fails to bring our sexy back.
Non-alcoholic Beer ~
Are you a beer person? Non-alcoholic beer or cider is always a great option if you're craving to get that bubbly, yeasty fix. Just be sure that you're sipping on something pure — none of that added high fructose corn syrup, preservatives or GMOS, please.