Millions of people all over the planet are getting ready to give up giving up alcohol for the next month as part of Wet February.
‘After absolutely caning tee-totalism for the last month I really feel ready for some time off,’ said influencer @Lifestylegirl.
‘It’s about listening to your body.
‘And mine is telling me to get on one like Boris Yeltsin in a vodka factory.’
Fake Booze ran into John Public in the car park of its local Pricefixer Supermarket, where he was loading six bottles of budget gin into his car.
‘Giving up alcohol for January has really allowed me to reassess my relationship with alcohol,’ he said.
‘Specifically, it’s proved that I absolutely can’t live without it.
‘And now I can now go back to pickling my liver with a clear conscience knowing that it’s the right thing to do.’
Dips O’Maniac of the pressure group Just Drink It OK? said the group had seen record numbers of people signing up to Wet February this year.
‘It’s definitely a growing trend,’ she told Fake Booze. ‘There used to be a bit of a stigma around drinking alcohol. People felt embarrassed to be the only one with a gin and tonic when everyone else in the room was drinking kombucha.
‘But as a people we’ve become a lot more tolerant of things that are expensive and bad for us.
‘Whether that’s alcohol, our elected representatives or the American police force.’
Just Drink It OK? says that its long-term aim is to encourage a culture of ‘mindlessness’ that helps people to drink on a more regular basis.
‘A lot of people think they could never drink alcohol every day,’ said Ms O’Maniac. ‘But we say – why not give it a go and see how you get on? If it’s not for you, then fine. But there’s no harm in trying.
‘I mean, what’s the worst that can happen? Apart from liver cirrhosis.’
However, medical advisers have cautioned that sudden changes in behaviour could be dangerous.
‘Wet February is highly effective at raising awareness of the joys of intemperate alcohol consumption,’ said Dr Pan Creatitis of the World Health Organisation. ‘But if your body has been used to not drinking, then suddenly committing to insobriety for an entire month is a huge step.’
Instead, the WHO recommends starting small – maybe drinking once or twice a week – and building up gradually – an approach which it says is far more sustainable.
‘That way,’ says Dr Creatitis, ‘by the summer you should be able to drink seven days a week every week without any problem at all.
‘Just like the entire drinks industry.’
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