The research was conducted mainly in veterans, who have a 10% higher chance of smoking than non-military US civilians, and found that when cigarettes and alcohol are combined, have an increased negative effect on cognitive functions. This may seem obvious to some, we know that cigarettes are bad for you, and we know that alcohol is bad for you, but the extent to which one dependency influenced the other, and the combined effect on our brains was not exactly known. In 2007, more than  375,000 patients of Veterans Affairs reported suffering from some kind of substance dependency, and over 500,000 were addicted to nicotine.
Dr Durazzo explains that the research shows that comprehensive treatment for quitting smoking should be offered to all subjects, but especially those who are undergoing treatment for alcohol and other substance addictions. Cognitive function was one of the main measures used, and they found that the longer the period of smoking, the more cognitive damage could be observed.
While it is clear that everyone should aim to have the best cognitive functions possible, in recovering addicts it is even more important, as having complete cognitive functions will allow them to fully absorb and integrate their treatment. If you are undergoing treatment for alcohol or other substance abuse, quitting smoking is essential. If you had met me before I stopped drinking, you would not have listened to a word I had to say. Abraham Maslow was an American psychologist who is known for creating what is known as Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. In short, a self-actualized person has realistic perceptions about themselves, others, and the wider world.
Blurred vision, loss of balance or co-ordination, difficulty understanding what someone is saying to you, having trouble with speaking, confusion, dizziness, or loss of consciousness are all common signs that a person is very drunk. That really tells you something about what’s going on in your brain to get you to the feeling of being ‘wasted’. On a previous video, we’ve learned that alcohol is one of the few substances that can pass straight through the Blood Brain Barrier (BBB). Alcohol is used as a very efficient cleaner, as a solvent, and as a motor and rocket fuel, among other things. So the next time you take a drink of alcohol, imagine what the effect is on the delicate electrochemical signalling that is responsible for processing and transmitting every thought you have. When we’re under the influence of a heavy drug like alcohol, we’re often not even aware what choice has been made, never mind the processes or the thoughts that preceded making that choice.
Once you make the choice not to drink alcohol again, your decisions and choices will become much cleaner. When you stop drinking, your choices and decisions will improve because you have better control over your thought processes. I'm Kevin O'Hara and I'm looking forward to helping you with your journey to alcohol freedom and mastery.
I’m asking for some insight because I know early in your journey you moved from the UK and changed your entire locale.
If you see alcohol as a problem then of course you should give it up – no one should live with problems. You are right of course, more people do die from heart disease and obesity than from alcohol consumption. Obesity and heart disease are two other causes of early death which are directly attributable to treating our bodies like rubbish bins, putting entertaining our taste buds over taking care of our health.
Three and a half million people die every year from this drug and yet we are still the biggest pushers for our own children, leading them down the same ignorant paths we have been taken.
Even though I spent over thirty years drinkig alcohol, I don’t need this or any other drug in my life. For a married man with kids, I think rock bottom for him would be if he lost his job, lost his family, lost his house, his kids wouldn’t talk to him anymore. There’s plenty of signposts along the way that say you’ve got a problem, you need to address this, you need to get your head sorted out and wake up and smell the roses. Once you start to see those signs, it’s a question of mind over matter, it’s a question of getting your head sorted out enough so you can deal with this thing.


The problem is, with a lot of people, the really bad alcoholics, is they keep digging and digging and digging. In answer to the question “Do you have to reach rock bottom before you quit drinking?”, absolutely not.
I drink once a week and really like getting drunk for one night only,normally a Friday if possible, I drink around 18 cans of beer and I hold down a fill time job I have 2 kids and work some weekends, do you think I am in trouble of being an alcoholic? The only people who are in trouble with alcohol are the ones who feel they’re in trouble. Timothy Durazzo to confirm that smoking while trying to quit drinking leads to memory, learning and other brain function difficulties, and thus damages a quitter’s ability to successfully stay sober. The logic being, so many of these veterans smoke, that the numbers clearly show the connection. It may seem too much to cope with at once, but the efforts will be easier, not harder, if they are done with better functioning brains. It wasn’t that I didn’t have anything to say, I’m half-Irish, I always have something to say.
This theory goes something along the lines of: your mental health is based around fulfilling a series of deep-seated needs, all culminating at the peak of self-actualization.
This need we may call self-actualization…It refers to the desire for self-fulfilment, namely, to the tendency for him to become actualized in what he is potentially. From getting behind the wheel of my car while drunk to standing on the outside railing of a ferry crossing the Irish sea, drunk as hell, with only fresh air between me and the cold sea fifty feet below. When you don’t drink alcohol, the only chemicals that are in your brain are the ones that are supposed to be there.
I wanted to know how you dealt with changing your environment which seems to be a big thing for me. But obesity and heart disease have many causes, death from alcohol has just the one – alcohol.
I relax much, much better than I ever did while I was poisoning my body with alcohol in the name of fun. Years ago I heard Elton John say the if he opened a bottle of wine with the intention to have only one glass he knew unlike his friends the whole bottle would go.
I continuously feel my determination flounder though I know beyond any doubt that this needs to be done. In a drinking culture, taking into account most of the western world, alcohol drinkers love being tipsy, drunk, pissed, or out of our heads. It can prevent most foreign substances, your own hormones and neurotransmitters that don’t belong in your cranium, and it maintains the constant environment that your brain requires.
The normal process when you make a mistake is to think about it, to try and isolate the reason it didn’t work out, and to change the choice or some part of the choice the next time round.
You can’t go back over the thought process to see where you went wrong because it has generally been permanently wiped out of your memory. Beating yourself up has probably driven you to use alcohol on more than one occasion, which only leads to more negativity and more of the same beating yourself up. Your brain will be in that constant pure environment that it needs for clear, crisp thoughts to happen. You are more likely to get more of your choices wrong when you are not in complete control of your brain, when you’re locked out of your head.
Because you’re not wasting your time drinking and recovering, you’ll have more time to think things through, leading to better choices, which will in turn lead to better choices. I find when I get some significant sobriety time under my belt I sabotage myself with old environments, places and people and hence I pick up again and have binge episodes which usually occur socially, I don’t drink alone.
It mainly has to do with your videos and the way you simplify the process of being able to enjoy life and facing your daily life without getting drunk. I get so much more out of my days, and nights, whereas before I copped on my holidays just became a blur.


Half my life was the working man who had to provide for his family, someone who did want to get ahead, and a person who genuinely enjoyed living.
They view the world with appreciation, if not awe, focusing on what can be instead of what cannot be. But we never really stop to think about what is happening to us biologically so that our bodies and minds can arrive at that feeling.
Do you really want something that is used as an industrial cleaner to be washing around inside the control centre of your entire life? The choices that matter are the ones you can alter, and the only ones you can alter are the ones you make from now on. You are more likely to make more bad decisions when your brain is bathed in something which is also used as a toxic solvent.
Unfortunately, some of the results of those choices are still present in my life but im looking forward to better days! I picked up lifting weights again, started loosing weight and my self-confidence has gone up. I have felt as thoughI I was living with a demon on my back and the downward mental spiral of guilt was affecting my confidence and pervading every area of my life. You cannot be the best person you can be if a part of you craves this daily instant gratification. For me, one of the best characteristics of Maslow’s self-actualized person is a person who is self-determining. Being an alcohol user has definitely infected many important choices that I have made which have ultimately affected my whole life.
So please, give it a rest – if you give up alcohol because you have a problem with alcohol you still have the problem.
This is why we can’t drink pure alcohol, why most people vomit when they first drink it, and why three and a half million people die every year from drinking the stuff. I do fine being out and about in social situations with my non-pickled brain thank you very much.
Listening to your podcasts reassures me that I CAN do this (many failures, AA months, etc). You don’t need anyone else to tell you how to live your life, what to be happy about, or conforming to other people’s ideas of contentment. The reason it doesn’t stop alcohol is because the blood brain barrier is not used to the levels of alcohol that are flung at it from alcoholic drinking. I can actually enjoy my kids and be present in their life not jus physically but also mentally. It will hold you back from all the rewarding possibilities that waiting, working, and patience will eventually bring.
It just seems a bit ironic that you make a comment on a post about the benefits of quitting drinking. AA helped me for a few months quite a few years ago, but as I am an atheist, the higher power part never sat right with me. Why are you looking for information about quitting drinking if you aren’t already questioning alcohol in your own life.
The best part is that I stopped feeling sorry about myself and realized that life is too good to be blacked out.
If you need help, Barbara, you’ll find plenty of people here who have taken a new journey and have opened their eyes to the propaganda and lies that our alcoholic society would have them believe.
Like many here, I feel I am at a crossroads to professional ruin, deteriorating physical and mental health, and damaged relationships.



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