My podcast guest this week is Lindsey Beveridge whom I met 7 years ago at a “how to quit drinking” workshop in London!
We were both hungover and grumpy so we didn’t even connect on that day – so it’s been amazing to meet her again here in Soberland. Shout out to Club Soda who ran that workshop as we are both 7 years sober now! Not only are we sober, but so too do we both help other people to quit drinking and then go on and thrive in their sobriety.
Lindsey qualified as a nutritionist in 2019 and helps people to implement changes to their diet and lifestyle to feel better. She uses a functional medicine approach to enable her clients to change their patterns of behaviour.
In this Episode
- Lindsey was a teenage drinker and enjoyed the confidence it gave her.
- Like many of us, her drinking got heavier as she matured – until she became dependent.
- At the age of 47, she was taking “Are You an Alcoholic?” quizzes and ticking all the boxes.
- Her excessive drinking began to frighten her and as a single parent, she feared that her young daughter might find her dead one day.
- Lindsey realised that she should go for a medically-assisted detox but she was afraid to do this in case her daughter was taken away from her.
- She tapered off her drinking to avoid the worst of the withdrawal symptoms but she would not recommend tapering to anyone.
- We discussed how difficult tapering is and how similar it is to the moderation battle.
- In retrospect, she realises she should have gone to rehab for a detox.
- We agreed that for anyone with a serious drinking problem, Rehab for a week and then connecting with a community to keep them on track was the best strategy.
- I always say to people that for the first few months they need to make their sobriety a priority and “throw the book at it” and Lindsey certainly did that!
- As you heard, she listened to podcasts, read books, did yoga, ate well, and spent quality time with her daughter.
- Lindsey agreed that we need projects to keep the dopamine triggered in early sobriety – for Lindsey it was exercise, learning new things, and voluntary work that kept her happy.
- She used this time to explore lots of different things and during that exploration, she found some things that she absolutely loved.
- Early sobriety is indeed a journey of self-discovery and here at Tribe Sober, we’ve set up a 7-step journey for our members. They can try out things like coaching, yoga, hypnotherapy, meditation, and art therapy – either for free or at significantly discounted rates. Just CLICK HERE and check out what we can offer you.
- Year 1 was tough for Lindsey – she was tired all the time, lacking in nutrition with gut issues – so she had to build herself up again.
- Year 2 was about dealing with the underlying trauma that she’d been drinking away for years – she went through a lot of intense therapy but…
- By Year 3 it was done a dusted and she felt great!
- This is so important to hear for those people who have been sober for a while but don’t really feel they are thriving or enjoying life more – the message here is to be patient.
- Remember how long you’ve been drinking and remember the guideline we learned from Dr Dawn (podcast number 61 – Sept 2021). From her extensive experience as a rehab doctor, Dawn has observed that it takes a month of recovery for every year that we drank for all of the benefits to manifest.
- As you do the maths and come up with 40 months (as in my case), don’t be discouraged as you will start to feel better almost immediately and of course, for those people who are already a couple of years sober, this is great news as it means that the benefits will just keep coming!
- Lyndsey is a qualified and experienced nutritionist so she gave us some really useful advice about Menopause. Drinking during menopause will disrupt our endocrine system and make us more estrogen-dominant which can lead to breast cancer – that’s a fact that I wish I’d learned before I got my breast cancer!
- In fact, alcohol disrupts all our hormones, it throws out our thyroid, affects our insulin levels, and also prevents us from absorbing vital nutrients from our food.
- The resulting nutritional deficiency affects our DNA replication and repair which of course has implications for cancer.
- As Lyndsey explained taking a handful of supplements will do nothing if we are drinking – the alcohol will simply cancel out any benefits – a bit like taking meds and drinking.
- Of course, we talked about gut health – the fact that alcohol affects not only our gut lining but also the microbiome which in turn affects many other parts of our body.
- Another interesting fact that I learned from Lyndsey was the fact that some of us have naturally low levels of dopamine, so we turn to alcohol to make us feel good.
- Other people (including Lyndsey) have low levels of Gaba (the calming neurotransmitter) so will use alcohol to calm themselves down.
- So in early sobriety, we need to build up those neurotransmitters – if we tend to be dopamine deficient we can do more exercise to raise it and if we used alcohol to calm ourselves we need to find calming activities – like yoga, meditation, or having or even having a hot bath.
- We talked about the effect alcohol has on cognitive function – of course, we all know that alcohol kills brain cells and the scary fact is that just as women’s drinking has increased significantly over the last 40 years, so has the number of dementia cases in the female population.
- When I asked Lyndsey to list her benefits of sobriety she quite simply said, “It changed everything.” She loves her work as a nutritionist, she loves her yoga, and she got married and has better relationships.
- Lyndsey has the most amazing Instagram feed which is packed with information that will help you in that first year of recovery – her Instagram is called recoverynutrition and her website is called www.recovery-nutrition.co.uk/
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