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Kava as an Alcohol Substitute: Please post your experiences.

ShannyinSobriety

Kava Enthusiast
Kava replaced my alcohol intake- if I have a craving, I have a shell- it is gone. Its given me 2 yrs of freedom from alcoholism. Kava does not give me a hangover, or cause me to have a lapse in judgment - I can share it with friends and family, my husband and I both enjoy partaking in the root, I can take it with me to gatherings, it makes a great conversation piece and I don't care that everyone else is drinking alcohol. I LOVE KAVA.
 

Steve Mariotti

Kavapithecus Krunkarensis
Review Maestro
I wanna post this on this thread, because it seemed appropriate.

I want to relate my evening. A fantastic evening seeing some bands alone (can't recruit a death metal crowd on a relatively short notice around here. Regardless, a fantastic night of really enjoying some music. And I found a way to integrate kava into it perfectly.

So here's the story. I'll warn all of you that this is going to be probably egregiously long because I just got home from the city and the drive's given me a lot to think about.

TL;DR:

Here's the tl;dr for the people who don't want to or have the time to read some dude's screed online: kava has a role in a nice night out on the town. I believe it has a place. An unrecognized place. A valuable place.

Longer Version:

If you're reading this far: *serious look with hand on shoulder* you've passed the test.

It was easy to stop, I honestly didn't want to drink more than 4-6oz every 45 minutes. Basically a fat shell between bands in my car (quart jar again: handy). With a 3 hour lead time, I stopped before the last band and I was perfectly capable of piloting my automobile through the streets of SF. I knew where I was, I knew where I was going, I changed lanes as necessary I felt aware of my surroundings and while driving: focused. This is fascinating to me. I DID notice a certain fluidity to my driving that's not normally there when I navigate traffic. I'm more abrupt. I at no time felt unsafe (I would have stopped for a coffee somewhere and waited an hour just relaxing in a coffee shop. No sweat there. I ALSO noticed that I was driving well, alert, obeying the speed limit, and anticipating other drivers. I could manage to drink from a cup of water (which I drank all night, and it was great) and play with the radio, but multi-tasking seemed to be affected by the kava. Whenever I dug for something in my pockets, I found I lost awareness at one edge of alertness. Like I'd be driving slow than I'd meant to and need to speed up. Futzing with a cell phone would be a bad choice. Unless at a light to check messages or something. That's interesting about multi-tasking. I wonder what part of the brain that is, and what of the kavalactones might affect that. Anyways!

There's more!

I made a quart of traditional prep. A little less than a liter (or litre if you're outside US borders or living here) that was traditionally prepared from a mix of 2:2:1 with the cultivars being KavaBoy, Nambawan and Hanakapi'ai. I know Nambawan isn't technically a cultivar, but more of a blend but I digress.

Pacing of Shells

With my grog jar in hand, I bid adieu to my better half and drove in to the city. I parked in a lot, drank about 6-8oz of my grog. I get pretty consistent results when I brew it, and I know how much is just right. Got set up with water at the club hit the bathrooms. The water kept flowing. Hydration is important, as kava is diuretic. For me kind of like coffee is, without the stinky pee. You WANT to drink water with kava. You're thirsty, and it tastes good. And it's freakin' good for you. I watched the opening band and checked out the merch tables.

After the band, I went to the merch tables and bought t-shirts, especially for up and coming bands because I know they're hand to mouth and merch cash on hand is really valued when these smaller bands are on tour. I bought (too much) stuff, but I always do. It's a weird sort of philanthropy that's been my habit.

Anyways, sorry for the digressions. Fuck. Feel so self-indulgent here. Gong me if I'm go on too long. Just don't make me have to look at Chuch Barris' tan.

Then another large shell (4-6oz) in the car that wasn't too far, Back for the second band, drinking water primarily, but had a red bull for the, you know, wings and all. After second band, same deal. Another shell-and-a-half.

Stopped at that point, loved the last band. Really felt loose and comfortable and really, as they say, "rocked out." Screaming for the band, air guitar. This was the main segment of the evening, the headlining band. I was prepared with kava for their set. I averaged less than a shell every 30 minutes. I just drank water the whole time.

I felt relaxed and really just enjoyed the music.

I was chatty and talked to some people leaving the club for a bit. Great experience.

It Really Doesn't Take Much

All in all, I drank less than a quart, there's still some in the jar in the fridge. Maybe another 4oz or so. So not a whole lot. I didn't need or want to drink more.

At the end of the night when the house lights came up, it was back to the bathroom. I'm sure everyone's really loving the bathroom updates here. I mention it only because I'm comparing to the routine when drinking beer is pretty similar. With the added benefit that I'm drinking lots of water.

Then I drove home and started writing this up about the experience.
 
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ShannyinSobriety

Kava Enthusiast
It has been my experience that Kava is like the angelic twin to Alcohol, a substance that brought me to my knees and the edge of mortality more times than I could count. I remember when I knew I had to quit, it wasn't when I quit but I knew it was time. I had been on a bender for about 3 days, $5 vodka- well about $15 worth of $5 Vodka. The 2nd day was no fun, it had sealed the deal and had me on my knees so to speak. At 3am I woke up with violent tremors and found my stashed bottle in the bathroom, I looked at that damn thing and said to it- yesterday you were my friend, kind of like a lover, but today you are my master, and you are going to kill me and it is nothing to you to do this. I was able to pour out the remaining alcohol the next day and go through a dangerous comedown mostly unscathed. When I woke up I read in the news that Amy Whinehouse had died from alcohol poisoning, and that it was a paltry 5th that had finished her. I realized that I drank 3Xs that amount on the daily and that I was nothing compared to a rock star, who has doctors and money and what ever she needed - it was going to kill me. I did AA for a few years, and then I had an episode, and then...I began to research and found Kava. I've never felt a craving I can't turn away these past 2 years, Kava is amazing, it is a plant healer, helper, spirit...what ever you call it, it is right with the healing addict. I am so happy that your experiences with this root are amazing, in comparison alcohol (once my best friend) now seems so dark and two faced to me now, I have walked away more times than I can count, and it wasn't a hard choice when I did it. I get that same rush of feelings when it comes to Kava, I love to listen to my hippie music, and I just picked up Trans National on vinyl- which I am going to burn a hole in seriously because when I drink Waka, I'm just easygoing and happy, happy, happy listening to music. Your experience is extraordinary! Kava is an ally and I love that about it.
 

Faffocles

Kava Curious
Checking in. Funny thing, the stuff we admit to on Le Internet. I was a full-blown alcoholic from 2003-2013. I was hungover for a decade, with small sessions of sobriety for a couple weeks here and there. I made it through university and tech school, worked three jobs at one point, and had mastered the art of enduring. I quit almost by accident. Perhaps it was providence. I just decided one day that I never wanted to be hung over again. I knew the rebound anxiety would be rough, and in retrospect I wish I'd been better versed in kava drinking as all I used were copious amounts of capsule extracts, but they were VERY necessary, and worked well for their purpose. Combine that with a lot of EVE Online, and I managed to endure the long withdrawal.

Flash forward to now. I discovered drinking kava the traditional way sometime last year around September, and it has changed my world. I will never go back to booze unless we enter WWIII or something similar. Asteroid maybe. Ten years of empty bottles and dehydrated, bloodshot sickness. I still get cravings from time to time, and I came to realize that a large part of my drinking was due to anxiety. Well, kava obliterates anxiety, for me, and so it was instrumental in helping me to overcome getting sloshed regularly. I could go on for pages about how kava is essential to my well-being. It's magical stuff, man. I can't believe the 'people' running AUS right now. I just can't. It's villany. I hope it turns around.
 

Crunked

Proselytizer
I can't believe the 'people' running AUS right now. I just can't. It's villany. I hope it turns around.
At the moment I would put the chances of kava being completely banned in Australia only marginally higher than Texas seceding from the union. Only one minister is pushing it and even he has backtracked. And even if it was made illegal, well there are lots of things that are illegal, 'weed' being one, yet it is freely available.
 

ShannyinSobriety

Kava Enthusiast
I admit my condition readily and openly to anyone that wants to know- In real life as well as here in virtual real life lol. "Experience strength and hope" - that is the one thing I took with me from the 12 steps, you never know who else is in the grips of alcoholism but still romancing the bottle or just sure that they are experiencing something totally unique to the human race and therefor afraid to admit it. Its a funny progression, I used to be embarrassed to talk about it, to admit that I did not mix well with alcohol, but I realized our obsession with booze is closely tied to cultural values. I am not exactly tied to any one set of cultural values any longer and have let the obsession go- I would rather consume a root, which grew from the ground to reach the sun, than the juice left over from fermenting(rotting) fruits, plants and sugars. It seems obvious which would have the positive spirit to it. Now I am no longer embarrassed, and I will share with any one. I have a white tattoo on my wrist that says " I Am the Hero of this Story" with my sobriety date in green cuneiform. (History dork) the other wrist says "To Serve and Glorify" take that in many forms- whether it be God, Humanity, the goodness /life energy in all things. I did this because these were the hands I reached out for alcohol with, now I have that reminder when I reach out for something that will harm me. Heroes don't have to be long suffering, they must look for ways to successfully navigating their battles. I am glad that we are here and have a community to share our victories with! I wish more alcoholics and addicts knew about this root- people need hope.
 
D

Deleted User01

Yikes! If I saw that group in my head lights then I'd be chugging whiskey before I stopped to greet them. "Howdy Madames, is this your day off from the house of pain." :D One of those may even be a dude wearing one of Harpos hats but maybe they were progressive back in those days. :LOL:
 

Kapmcrunk

The Kaptain (40g)
KavaForums Founder
Lips That Touch Liquor

by George W. Young

You are coming to woo me, but not as of yore,
When I hastened to welcome your ring at the door;
For I trusted that he who stood waiting me then,
Was the brightest, the truest, the noblest of men,
Your lips, on my own, when they printed "Farewell,"
Had never been soiled by the "beverage of hell;"
But they come to me now with the bacchanal sign,
And the lips that touch liquor must never touch mine."
 

love2driveinct

Kava Enthusiast
I’m a new member and this was the thread that brought me here. Trying to cut back on alcohol consumption and looking for safe alternatives. Your stories are so inspiring, I was almost in tears reading them. My hope that I can have the life I dream of has been strengthened! Looking forward to trying my first cup of kava.
 

Krunkie McKrunkface

Kava Connoisseur
I’m a new member and this was the thread that brought me here. Trying to cut back on alcohol consumption and looking for safe alternatives. Your stories are so inspiring, I was almost in tears reading them. My hope that I can have the life I dream of has been strengthened! Looking forward to trying my first cup of kava.
Bula!

My wife and I drank alcoholic beverages for 40 years and since we started drinking kava we both stopped completely. Without even trying. Many people have.
 

love2driveinct

Kava Enthusiast
Bula!

My wife and I drank alcoholic beverages for 40 years and since we started drinking kava we both stopped completely. Without even trying. Many people have.
Another wonderful story. I am trying not to get my hopes up in case kava and I can’t be friends, but this is so great to hear!

I don’t have a serious problem with alcohol — liver is fine, I don’t say or do anything I shouldn’t, no binge drinking or hangovers, etc. But my usage (and tolerance) has crept up quite a bit the last couple of years, way beyond what is recommended for a healthy female. I’m sure it’s not a coincidence that we have three teenagers, lol. I want to restore my health to what I hope is an optimal state, and I want to set a better example for my kids. It’s bad enough they are growing up in a culture soaked with alcohol, I don’t need to reinforce the idea that it is necessary at home, too.
 

kastom_lif

Kava Lover
I had a rough day. Dog attacked my rooster and nearly killed him. I killed the dog, with the rooster still in her mouth. I ended some poor doggo, the very day after the freakin' Florida school shooting. I did a thing that I super do not enjoy, with a scary black rifle which the media is currently in an uproar about.

Was very tempted to break 11 months of no booze. Kava is keeping me sane and helping me process everything in a healthier way.

So, yay kava. Sorry dog. Your owners should have at least put a tag on your collar so I knew where the heck you came from. I love dogs.

Alright. Time for another shell and put Amanda Palmer and The Smiths on shuffle. :(
 

muddywaters

Kava Enthusiast
I used to drink quite a bit years ago and still remember what it was like getting drunk and drinking weekly. The closest thing with kava I ever felt was on Loa when it really hit me and felt to my body and mind in how the sedation hit just like alcohol. But otherwise it wasn't nothing like it besides music sounding about the same as it did on alcohol for a while. My senses actually got sharper and more colorful minus what the sedation does to mellow your vision a bit (which having been a stimulant user and having the body hardwired for it unfortunately now is a very foreign, strange thing to try to get over, you're perception isn't used to that. It's hard to describe cause nothing is less detailed or colorful just softer). With alcohol I feel more floaty for a while before feeling like a zombie. With kava I felt like I was a vibrating rock, no desire to move but I could if I needed or wanted to and do something despite being ridiculously uncomfortable and buzz killing to do so. Another major difference is that kava makes the cold to my body far more irritating and alcohol just numbs my sense of it heavily enough to take it easier. But kava still doesn't allow enough body stress for it to hurt me as much. And I forgot one major difference between the 2, aggression. Alcohol I can't rest on, I get to any and every emotional extreme very quickly. It's the most immature substance on earth. With kava I can't even be bothered to fight if my worst enemy just walked in the room and tried to start something. I'm just too peaceful to do so and any worth I see in major conflict is gone. I retain my willpower though to resist what I don't need though but it's different, I'm more constructive about it and less explosive.
 
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HeadHodge

Kneads Kava
I had a rough day. Dog attacked my rooster and nearly killed him. I killed the dog, with the rooster still in her mouth. I ended some poor doggo, the very day after the freakin' Florida school shooting. I did a thing that I super do not enjoy, with a scary black rifle which the media is currently in an uproar about.

Was very tempted to break 11 months of no booze. Kava is keeping me sane and helping me process everything in a healthier way.

So, yay kava. Sorry dog. Your owners should have at least put a tag on your collar so I knew where the heck you came from. I love dogs.

Alright. Time for another shell and put Amanda Palmer and The Smiths on shuffle. :(
I know some big time farmers in Oregon. They dont necessarilly hate dogs but arent reluctant to take care of issues that dogs can cause. So dont feel alone....
 
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