History of National Sober Day
Alcohol is not only difficult to quit but one of the most widely abused substances in the world with many deaths attributed to it every year. Alcohol has a long history in our society and has been a part of human culture for years. In the past, it was mainly made by fermenting grains, fruit juice, and honey. Evidence of fermented beverages can be found in ancient Chinese, Egyptian, and Indian histories.
In these early societies, the beverage was consumed for a variety of reasons — for its nutritional value, as a pain reliever, and as part of religious ceremonies. During the 16th century alcohol, specifically ‘spirits,’ were considered medicinal.
In the 18th century, Britain passed a law encouraging the use of grain for distilling spirits. The law led to the rise in the availability of cheap spirits. It spiked gin consumption which reached 18 million gallons, and alcoholism became widespread.
In the 19th century, there was a change of mindset and the temperance of the time pushed the idea of moderation in alcohol consumption — which ultimately became a push for total prohibition. The U.S. passed a law prohibiting the manufacture, sale, import, and export of intoxicating liquors. It resulted in a boom of illegal alcohol trading forcing the cancellation of the prohibition of alcohol.
Today alcohol has little to no nutritional value. Medically alcohol is only used as a solvent for water-insoluble compounds. In most religious ceremonies alcohol is merely symbolic. More than 17 million American adults are suffering from alcohol use disorder. Alcohol causes approximately 88,000 deaths a year, and 40% of all car accident deaths in the U.S. involve alcohol. This National Sober Day, let us all join hands to: “Celebrate sober life and bring awareness to addiction.”