Perhaps the most difficult thing when dealing with alcohol addiction is trying to control the cravings.
Luckily, there’s a solution to help you fight those cravings and stay on track on your path to recovery.
The solution is none other than lithium.
Here’s how lithium eases alcohol cravings
What makes lithium an important mineral in the treatment of alcoholism is that it reduces brain cell death.
According to Dr Jonathan Wright of Nutrition & Healing , in one study, mice were assigned to groups being administered one of four protocols: Some mice were injected with saline, some with lithium, some with alcohol (ethanol) and some with both alcohol and lithium. The mice were then studied for the effects on the brain.
What researchers found was groundbreaking!
“Lithium showed a significant protective effect on the mice in the alcohol plus lithium group,” says Dr Wright. Other studies have been able to demonstrate similar results showing that lithium protects brain cells from dying due to alcohol.
According to Dr Wright, in another study, researchers studied the effects of lithium given at the same time as alcohol in mice. They found that lithium reduced the damage to an area of the brain called the hippocampus and also protected the spatial recognition abilities of the mice as adults,” explains Dr Wright.
In humans, “protection of spatial recognition” refers to being less drunk. As a result, researchers concluded that lithium is able to reduce both the short-term and long-term neurotoxic effects of alcohol on the brain.
What’s the dosage for treating alcohol cravings with lithium?
If you drink heavily, Dr Wright recommends a low dose of 10mg of lithium orotate three times a day. “The net result of taking low dose lithium is often reduction in the desire for alcohol, improvement in mood and other positive benefits,” explains Dr Wright. In addition, you must also take niacin, glutamine and other supplements to help reduce your drinking.
If you’re in recovery from alcoholism, 20mg of lithium orotate, three times a day is usually sufficient.
But what if you’re a “social drinker”?
Well, a low dose lithium supplementation can help you too! The good news is, taking 20mg of lithium daily will help you tolerate the occasional hangover and it’ll also make it shorter.
While lithium helps reduce alcohol cravings and can improve your mood, Dr Wright advises you consult your doctor before taking it.