November 29, 2022 4 min read
It’s the most wonderful time of the year, but not if Jack (Daniels) is nipping at your nose. In fact, for those hearing the jingle of addictive cravings, the holidays can be the most difficult time of the year.
If you are newly sober or are just trying to avoid alcohol and/or recreational drugs for any number of good reasons, the temptations presented by the endless holiday parties and family get-togethers may not be so merry and bright.
If the enticement of partaking is even more worrisome than getting cornered under the mistletoe, or if you are newly sober and understand the risks of spirit-filed holiday parties, you may want to opt for the discretion of an elf on a shelf rather than the joviality of Kris Kringle.
If you’d like the season’s festivities to be filled with less risk and more joy and peace, here are a few suggestions…
§ Avoid the riskiest parties where you’ll feel pressure to imbibe, self-imposed or otherwise
§ Keep your hands busy – drink something fun, festive, and non-alcoholic
§ Recognize the temptations and be prepared to step away if necessary
§ Bring a sober buddy to the merrymaking who knows your concerns
§ Stay busy, have fun and a plan – be aware and prepare for people, places, and things
§ And if you slip, forgive yourself, then get back to your plan
We want to suggest something that you may not have considered but may prove to be the difference between you being naughty or nice as you face these trials: CBD.
CBD can help stabilize important bodily functions from mood to sleep to addictive cravings. Here’s some background on CBD you might find useful.
How CBD Works: A Primer
Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of 113 identified cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, along with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). CBD accounts for as much as 40 percent of the plant's extract. The CBD used in herbal supplements is derived from the hemp strain of cannabis, not the marijuana strain.
Hemp and marijuana are “cousins,” if you will, with marijuana having a high concentration of THC and a low concentration of CBD. Conversely, hemp is very low in THC and high in CBD, which is what is desired by providers of CBD products.
CBD has a very positive safety profile—it’s not addictive, you can’t overdose from it, and the risk of CBD of interacting adversely with prescription medications and other natural supplements is minimal.
CBD binds to and balances a system of neurotransmitters throughout the body called the endocannabinoid system (ECS). A balanced ECS helps return your body to equilibrium which can help level your mood, help you sleep better, and, importantly, reduce those addictive cravings that can portend calamity.
Our bodies naturally produce endocannabinoids, but like with any nutrient, they can become depleted over time and require renewal. Taking supplemental CBD replenishes this depleted ECS and offers a helpful response to life’s (physical, mental, environmental) changes and stressors.
The ECS (Endocannabinoid System)
Our endocannabinoid systems stay as busy as a Macy’s gift-wrapping department on Christmas eve. The ECS is ubiquitous throughout the body; it affects our physiology and can help us ward off myriad diseases and harmful conditions.
Endocannabinoids are signaling molecules which bind with receptors on our cells’ surface which can help bring homeostasis, or equilibrium, to our body. Researchers believe they can help reduce pain, lower inflammation, and help us with mood and focus, including help curb the cravings of people with addictions. Endocannabinoids are circulated throughout our body by our ECS and once their work is done, enzymes expel them from our body.
CBD and Addiction
As alcoholics and addicts our brain circuitry is unlike that of non-addicts, prone to fixating on substances that affect our reward center. This faulty circuitry can be seen from our brain scans.
While the research is still young and is ongoing, researchers believe that CBD can help get our brain’s motherboard back in alignment. This helps break the psychological bridge and, in the process, minimize the drug and alcohol cues that often jump start our addictive behavior. Cravings are often triggered after exposure to these substance-specific visual cues. By minimizing the cues you can help reduce drug-seeking behaviors and reduce relapses as well.
With this, CBD can be an important part of a broad approach to quitting an unhealthy and addictive habit, be it nicotine, alcohol, or illicit drugs.
It can be wonderful to celebrate the spirit of the season without the spirits (i.e., liquor) of the season, making spirits bright, not intoxicating.
Exact Nature Can Help Your Holidays Be Bright
Addiction is a dreadful, life-threatening affliction. Addicts have a crushing attraction to substances that, ultimately, promise only to make matters worse. Borne out of this struggle, Exact Nature Botanicals LLC is run by recovering alcoholic Thomas White and his son Daniel, also in recovery.
Exact Nature is an e-commerce company with a singular mission to provide safe, healthy, natural, CBD-based products to help recovering addicts and alcoholics face the addictive cravings and changes in mood and sleep patterns that can come in sobriety.
While there are thousands of CBD products on the market, Exact Nature is the only one that formulates its products for the specific needs of recovering addicts. Exact Nature is providing a “grand opposition” to alcoholism and addiction.
May your holiday be filled with peace and love as well as hot cocoa, warm cookies and lots of laughter, something that comes easily in sobriety, and filled with joy. Being sober will allow you to fill your holidays with joyful noise, not the cacophony that comes with the pull of addictive substances.
The best and most beautiful things in the world often cannot be seen or touched. They must be felt with the heart. Wishing you happiness and sobriety and all the wonderfulness that goes with it.
Warmest wishes from Exact Nature during this Holiday Season.