Can I Drink Non-Alcoholic Beer in Recovery?

The non-alcoholic beer market is exploding. “Near beer” beverage sales are anticipated to be worth $23.27 billion by 2025, and their popularity is increasing. This leads us to the question, is drinking non-alcoholic drinks in recovery a good or bad idea? 

The main difference between alcoholic and non-alcoholic beer is the alcohol content. Alcoholic beer contains between 0.5% and 7% alcohol by volume, while non-alcoholic beer have less than 0.5% alcohol by volume. This may not seem like a big difference, but it can actually be quite significant for people in recovery from alcoholism. At the very least, non-alcoholic beer can be deceiving. Alcoholics in recovery may feel that it’s okay to drink non-alcoholic beer since there’s no alcohol present in it, but this isn’t always the case. 

Most of the time, non-alcoholic beer has some level of alcohol present, which can end up doing more harm than good for those who are getting treatment from North Jersey Rehabs and trying to stay sober and avoid alcohol altogether. 

1-Unhealthy Ingredients

Most non-alcoholic beers are loaded with unhealthy ingredients like preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial flavors and colors. These ingredients can actually trigger cravings and make it harder to stay sober. Studies show that people who drink low-calorie beer have a greater risk of developing an addiction than those who abstain from alcohol altogether. Non-alcoholic beers are also known to have excess amounts of sugar. 

The health risks associated with sugar include obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and many other conditions. Drinking too much sugar leads to these health problems and could lead someone back down the path of addiction as well.

2-Smell and Taste Can Trigger Relapse

One of the most difficult things about recovering from alcoholism is learning to live without alcohol. This means giving up not only hard liquor, but also beer, wine, and anything else that contains alcohol. Some people in recovery drink non-alcoholic beer as a way to still enjoy the taste and smell of beer without risking relapse. However, drinking non-alcoholic drinks in recovery can actually be a trigger for relapse. The smell and taste of beer can trigger cravings and cause some people to start drinking again. It’s best to avoid anything with alcohol even if it doesn’t contain any actual alcohol. One reason why non-alcoholic beer is bad for alcoholics in recovery is because they may be relying on something other than addiction therapy or another form of treatment to help them stay sober. 

3-Not Beneficial in Recovery

When trying to recover from alcoholism, it is important to abstain from all forms of alcohol. This includes non-alcoholic beer. While non-alcoholic beer may seem like a harmless alternative, it can actually be detrimental to your recovery. 

Here is why: 

  • It can trigger cravings for alcohol. 
  • It can lead to a false sense of security that drinking is safe. 
  • It can interfere with medications used to treat alcoholism. 
  • It can cause problems in social situations where alcohol is present. 
  • It can be a slippery slope back into full-blown alcoholism.

4-Encourages Old Habits

For those in recovery, part of the reason they don’t drink alcohol is that they’re trying to avoid old habits. But non-alcoholic beer can easily encourage old habits. 

The taste, smell, and feeling of holding a cold beer can all trigger memories of drinking. And before you know it, you’re off to the races again. And when we go back to that memory, sometimes it leads right back to another drink. Even if you don’t have an alcoholic relapse, you might end up getting drunk or tipsy on one glass of ‘non-alcohol’ beer – which is not what anyone wants from a recovery process!

5-Opportunity Cost

The most obvious reason why non-alcoholic beer is bad for alcoholics in recovery is the opportunity cost. When you’re trying to stay sober, every time you drink non-alcoholic beer you’re missing out on the opportunity to do something else that could help your recovery. Maybe you could be going to a meeting, working out, or spending time with sober friends. Whatever it is, there are always better things you could be doing than drinking non-alcoholic beer. If you have to choose between not drinking at all and drinking non-alcoholic beer, then choosing not to drink is still the best option. 

6-Better Alternatives 

There are many better alternatives to non-alcoholic beer during recovery from alcoholism. These include water, sparkling water, seltzer, tea, coffee, and juices. Each of these options will help keep you hydrated without the risk of relapse. They also provide vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are essential for your health as well as decreasing your cravings for alcohol.

Don’t Drink Non-alcoholic Beer 

Non-alcoholic beer is not a good choice for alcoholics in recovery for several reasons. It can trigger cravings, lead to relapse, and disrupt sobriety. Additionally, it can be difficult to know how much alcohol any non-alcoholic beer has, and it’s possible to develop an intolerance to the alcohol in non-alcoholic beer over time. 

If you’re an alcoholic in recovery, it’s best to avoid non-alcoholic beer altogether. North Jersey Rehabs specializes in the treatment of alcohol addiction. Contact us today to find out how we can help you beat addiction. 

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