Do Supplements Lessen Alcohol Cravings?

Do Supplements Lessen Alcohol Cravings?

Alcohol cravings can be overwhelming! Many people have struggled with these frustrating feelings when tryingto reduce or stop their alcohol intake, and some have found success by supplementing specific nutrients into their diets. the goal for taking these vitamins, minerals, etc. is that they will reduce cravings so they can continue a path of sobriety. But does it work?

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the role of nutritional deficiencies caused by alcohol, the potential benefits of specific supplements for alcohol cravings, and the importance of discussing their use with a healthcare professional.

Nutritional Deficiencies Caused by Alcohol

Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to various nutritional deficiencies due to poor dietary intake, interference with nutrient absorption, and indirect complications. Individuals who rely heavily on alcohol for their caloric intake often have limited nutrient consumption and may choose unhealthy foods.

Alcohol also interferes with the absorption of essential nutrients, such as vitamins and minerals, leading to further deficiencies. Some of the most common nutrient deficiencies observed in individuals with alcohol addiction can be addressed with the use of supplements, for alcohol cravings.

Addressing these nutrient deficiencies is crucial for overall health and wellbeing during alcohol addiction recovery.

Supplements for Alcohol Cravings

Vitamin B

Vitamin B deficiencies, particularly thiamine (vitamin B1), are common among individuals with alcohol addiction. Thiamine deficiency can lead to a life-threatening condition called Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome. While there is limited data on the direct benefit of vitamin B1 in reducing alcohol cravings, supplementing with vitamin B1 is important to prevent complications from alcohol use and is a supplement for alcohol cravings.


D-phenylalanine is a supplement for alcohol cravings and an amino acid found in various foods, including meats, tofu, fish, beans, and nuts. Some studies suggest that d-phenylalanine may improve alcohol withdrawal symptoms, although the exact mechanism is still unclear.


L-glutamine is a natural chemical produced by the body and is also available as a nutritional supplement. It can be found in foods like wheat, barley, corn, peanuts, soybeans, eggs, and milk. L-glutamine may help alleviate symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea that occur during alcohol withdrawal. It is believed to protect the gut by preventing deterioration of gut permeability.

Kudzu Extract

Kudzu is a plant commonly used in traditional medicine to treat conditions like alcoholism. Its isoflavonoid compounds, such as phytoestrogen, may be responsible for its effects. Some studies suggest that kudzu extract can help reduce alcohol intake, even in individuals who consume alcohol heavily. However, further research is needed to fully understand its effectiveness.

Milk Thistle

Milk thistle is an herb that is sometimes used to treat liver damage, including alcoholic liver disease. It is believed to protect the liver and reduce the production of collagen, a protein associated with liver damage. However, there is limited information available on its use specifically during alcohol withdrawal.


Ashwagandha is a supplement for alcohol cravings and traditional herb used in Ayurvedic Indian medicine. It is known for its potential to reduce fatigue, stress, and anxiety, which are common symptoms during alcohol withdrawal. Ashwagandha is believed to work by acting on gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors in the brain, slowing down the central nervous system. While animal studies have shown promising results, more research is needed to determine its effectiveness in humans.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is an antioxidant that plays a crucial role in protecting cells from damage caused by free radicals. While alcohol is known to suppress the immune system, and some people take vitamin C to combat the health risks associated with alcohol use, there is limited clinical evidence supporting its use specifically for reducing alcohol cravings.


Magnesium is a mineral involved in various processes in the body, including DNA formation and blood pressure regulation. Magnesium deficiency is common among individuals with alcohol addiction and may contribute to symptoms such as depression, fatigue, and gastrointestinal issues. Supplementing with magnesium may help alleviate these symptoms and reset the overactive glutamate-based brain pathways associated with alcohol withdrawal symptoms.


Zinc is a mineral essential for many bodily functions, including immune system support. Zinc deficiency is possible in individuals with alcohol addiction, and supplementation may be beneficial. Like magnesium, zinc may also help reset the overly active glutamate brain pathways associated with alcohol withdrawal symptoms.


Selenium is a mineral that supports immune function in the body. Individuals with alcohol addiction, especially those with liver disease, may have selenium deficiency. While limited information is available on the use of selenium specifically for alcohol withdrawal, it is known to support the immune system, which can be suppressed by alcohol consumption.

It's important to note that before starting any new supplement, it is crucial to consult with a healthcare professional. Some supplements for alcohol cravings may require close monitoring, and others may have potential interactions with existing medications or worsen certain medical conditions. A healthcare professional can provide personalized guidance and ensure the safe and effective use of supplements for alcohol cravings and journey to sobriety.

Holistic Approaches Along with Supplements for Alcohol Cravings

In addition to considering supplementation, adopting holistic lifestyle changes is paramount in alcohol addiction recovery. Incorporating regular exercise, mindfulness practices such as meditation or yoga, and seeking support through therapy or support groups can significantly aid in maintaining sobriety.

These holistic approaches address not only the physical aspects of addiction but also the mental and emotional components. Engaging in meaningful activities, fostering healthy relationships, and finding purpose beyond alcohol consumption are crucial steps in building a fulfilling life free from addiction. Embracing a holistic approach fosters overall well-being and resilience, empowering individuals to navigate challenges and sustain their recovery journey effectively.{{CTA}}


Supplements have been explored as potential aids in reducing alcohol cravings and supporting individuals on their journey to recovery from alcohol addiction. While some studies suggest that certain supplements, such as vitamin B, L-glutamine, kudzu extract, or milk thistle, further research is needed to fully understand their effectiveness and optimal usage.

It is crucial to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement to ensure safety and compatibility with individual needs and medical conditions. By addressing nutritional deficiencies and taking a comprehensive approach to recovery, individuals can improve their overall health and well-being during the process of alcohol addiction rehabilitation.


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