With the holidays kicked into high gear, there is usually a lot more drinking going on, which can be tiring come the end of December. So, what’s this trend you keep seeing all over social media? What is Dry January?
Never fear; we’ve done some digging to ease your post-holiday haze. We’re figuring out a way that you can keep up with your New Year’s resolutions this first month of the year.
First, What Is Dry January?
Dry January, otherwise understood as a month-long break from alcohol, is fast approaching. This trend is often spurred on by many reasons, including:
- Potential weight loss by reducing the liquid calories you consume
- Working towards sobriety in the long-term
- The desire to avoid a hangover (hey, we’ve all been there)
Health benefits like potentially clearer skin, a possible decrease in high blood pressure, and a potential boost to your immune system
- Potentially improved cholesterol
- A decreased risk of heart disease and liver problems
If you choose to participate in Dry January, the following options are great alternatives to their boozy brothers and just as fun. Taking a month off from cocktails and other alcoholic beverages is an excellent opportunity to try new tastes. Plus, there are more fun options for non-alcoholic drinks on the market than ever before.
Your palate will not suffer while abstaining from cocktails, even if you’re used to having a glass of wine or a beer when you walk in the door. These non-alcoholic beverages pack a punch. They will give your tastebuds the jolt of new year energy you need when you quit cold turkey.
After all of the hectic holiday havoc, sitting back with some refreshing tepache or cold iced tea is just what we all need. Dry off for an alcohol-free month and then dive back in again, renewed.
You may even find a beverage that joins your drink staples this year or becomes a regular ritual. These drinks are fun and delicious—and you don’t need an ID to purchase them!
The first drink on our non-alcoholic docket is tepache. Tepache is a traditional Mexican beverage with a lot to offer Dry January participants.
Firstly, what exactly is tepache? Tepache is an authentic fermented beverage that originates in Pre-Columbian Mexico. Its history is as rich as its flavors.
The drink was usually sold by Mexican street vendors. Whether you were a traveler just passing through or a local looking for a respite from the summer heat, tepache was (and is) a go-to drink.
Tepache is made from fermented pineapple peels, piloncillo sugar, water, and a mixture of different spices. The drink is fermented for about one day and then enjoyed chilled with ice. The flavors are naturally sweet and allow for a plethora of different combinations.
Tepache takes the flavors of Mexico and infuses them into the drink for endless combinations that will have you excited to try out another one. De La Calle offers flavors like Ginger Manzana, Picante Mango Chile, and Tamarind Citrus.
That is just the beginning. You can also make your own tepache. This allows you to fine-tune the flavors to your exact liking.
Plus, brewing a batch of tepache is a fun and relaxing way to spend time after a busy holiday season. Test out a few flavors and choose which one to call your go-to tepache—you’re sure to change your drinking habits forever after you sample this one.
Another beverage to enjoy sans booze is the botanical-infused beverage. But what is a botanical?
A botanical is anything having to do with botany or plants. But the meaning of botanical in the sense of botanical-infused drinks carries a slightly different connotation.
These botanical beverages are gaining popularity as a botanical can be understood as plant-derived products with certain healing properties present. The increasing popularity of botanical drinks on shelves is thanks to the recent upsurge in interest in wellness and alternative medicine.
Many plants have benefits for the body when ingested. They can help with issues like indigestion or stress.
Botanical drinks are a fantastic option for this dry challenge if you’re looking to reduce your alcohol consumption. We could all use a little extra healing after the holidays. You might even like it so much that you continue through the rest of the year.
Botanicals also come in a variety of different flavors. Commonly enjoyed flavors you’ll find in botanicals are; hibiscus, elderflower, chrysanthemum, dandelion, and chamomile.
That is just the beginning. There is a vast array of different botanical beverages with notes and flavors that tickle the taste buds.
A botanical drink can transport you from a cold winter commute to a countryside picnic in spring.
Some of our favorite botanical options include:
- Amass Non-Alcoholic Spirits
- Ghia Non-Alcoholic Aperitifs
- Seedlip Non-Alcoholic Aperitifs
- Proteau Zero-Proof Botanical Drinks
CBD Infused Drinks
If you need a little extra help relaxing, look no further than CBD-infused drinks. These non-alcoholic spirits can help with stress and uplift your mood on cold winter days.
CBD is a nonintoxicating cannabinoid extract from the hemp flower. For this reason, studies have shown CBD can ease muscle tension, body pain, anxiety, and depression.
There are a variety of CBD-infused variations, from seltzers to non-alcoholic spirits. There are options in a variety of flavors, just like the tepache and botanical options.
Hemp-infused non-alcoholic spirits are formulated with taste in mind. They vary from the popular bold citrus flavors aforementioned to sweet peach, tangy pomegranate, or a chill blueberry chai.
Some options to sample include:
- Vybes CBD Tea
- Sweet Reason CBD-infused drinks
- Cann Social Tonics
Now, this option may seem a bit obvious, but we promise it’s not bland. Seltzers are fizzy fun for everyone.
One of the benefits of seltzer is the carbonation. If you are looking for a fizzy fix but don't want to get it from a cocktail or a sugary soda, seltzer is the way to go.
There are more flavors and variations of seltzer to try out than we can list, so the chances of finding a flavor that suits your unique tastes are high.
Plus, you can even get the best of both worlds with a sparkling CBD seltzer. You can chill out even if your cup is fizzed up.
Sparkling seltzers can come in subtle or bold flavors. This allows you to experiment with your own flavor enhancements.
Plus, if you crave that bite from an alcoholic beverage, you can supplement it with the zing that comes from a sparkling seltzer. It’ll satisfy your cravings in a social situation so that you can stick with moderation.
Whether it is plain seltzer water with a dash of lime or perhaps a bold blackberry and agave concoction, you are sure to find a delicious option. Mix, match, combine and enjoy.
If you’re looking for interesting flavor combinations, check out these brands:
- Spindrift Sparkling Water
- Bubly Sparkling Water
- La Croix Sparkling Water
- Sanzo Flavored Sparkling Water
Hopefully, one of these non-alcoholic drinks will strike your fancy. Perhaps all of them will!
Regardless of whether or not you are celebrating Dry January, Dry Today, or Dry Forever, these beverages will remind you that you are not missing out on anything. No matter what you sip on this winter, make it exciting. Whether you track your progress in a journal or you use other resources, you really can make progress, whether you’re looking to lose weight, support your mental health, or just lose that icky feeling you get after a night of drinking.
There are so many different options for non-alcoholic drinks. Many of them contain flavors that have a hard time shining through in cocktails.
Non-alcoholic drinks allow all of a beverage’s flavors to dance together without competing with the intensity of alcohol’s presence. They are a fantastic way to experiment with new brands or flavor combinations.
The beauty of non-alcoholic drinks is that you can indulge in them as much as you’d like and won’t wake up with a headache the next morning. They are a fantastic way to experiment in mixology that everyone can enjoy.
Dry January does not mean boring January. It means that we all have an excuse to play with different flavor combinations, cooking up exciting combinations in the kitchen.
So, grab a can of tepache, an herbal infusion, or maybe a seltzer or two. Enjoy the beverage and the peace and quiet this Dry January, and look forward to continuing the habit (or not) come February.
Botanical Definition & Meaning | Merriam Webster
Cannabidiol (CBD)-what we know and what we don't | Harvard Health
CBD Definition & Meaning | Merriam Webster
Voluntary temporary abstinence from alcohol during “Dry January” and subsequent alcohol use. Health Psychology
How 'Dry January' is the secret to better sleep, saving money and losing weight : Broadcast: News items | University of Sussex
Dry January | Alcohol Change UK
The Ultimate Guide to Dry January Survival | The Manual
Dry January: Is It Actually Good for You? | Houston Methodist On Health
Director's Blog: Taking a Break from Alcohol Can be Good for Your Health | National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)