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Episode 58: Alcohol And Obesity


Alcohol And Obesity

In today’s society, alcohol is viewed as a symbol of celebration and fun. It is normal to expect alcohol at a party, an event, or even at the end of a long day at work. But so many people and their families are suffering because of alcohol, sometimes mentally, but oftentimes physically. This led me to think about how alcohol can play a role in someone’s life, particularly with obesity. Can alcohol consumption cause weight gain? That’s what we’re going to find out today.

In this episode, you will learn to see the real face of alcoholism, how it affects people’s lives, relationships, marriages, businesses, and especially your health. Not only that, but my guests also share what they did to overcome this addiction and some very helpful tips for those who may be struggling with a similar situation.


Dr. Stephan Neff is an anesthesiologist, author, and alcoholic in recovery. After studying medicine in Heidelberg, Germany, he traveled and worked in Europe and Australia before settling down with his family in New Zealand. He has been alcohol-free for the last 7 years. He shares his passions through his podcasts, YouTube channel, and other social media all titled A Different Life Story. In his book My Steps to Sobriety, he shares the lessons he has learned as a doctor and as a man.

Janet Gourand is a brit living in Capetown, South Africa. When she decided to quit alcohol, she could find very little support in South Africa. Janet eventually got sober by attending a workshop in London and connecting with others on the same path. As her journey continued, she decided to use her extensive experience and training to create her own workshop in order to support people who wish to quit drinking. She founded Tribe Sober 5 years ago and has created an international community that is supported by a membership program and regular Zoom workshops.



Key Takeaways:

Tune in to my conversation with Stephan and Janet and learn:

  • What caused alcohol as an issue for Stephan and Janet
  • How alcohol seems like a friend until it isn’t
  • How Janet dealt with alcohol and her cancer
  • How addiction to alcohol is somewhat similar to people’s addiction to food hyper-palatable food
  • How alcohol impacted Stephan’s weight 
  • What makes alcohol addictive and why some people are more prone to addiction than others
  • How they overcame their addiction to alcohol 
  • How Stephan learned to deal with the negative emotions while being treated for alcohol addiction
  • How alcoholism affected the relationships with their families
  • How Stephan tackled his sugar addiction and what he does now when he gets those cravings



Dr. Stephan Neff

“Alcohol is a solvent, it dissolves marriages, bank accounts, it dissolves everything.”

“The key thing is that you need to learn to love yourself, you need to learn to see the person that is deep inside, you need to be able to for a moment, to shine the spotlight in the nooks and crannies of your brain and trying to find that person and cultivate that person, and bring that person out with all the passion, with all the energy in your life that you don’t even know is there.”

“Go out there, find your tribe, find the people that can help you, create a team of people where you are the stupidest member of that team, have a life coach, performance coach, nutritionist, psychologist, deal with the shit in your life. Once you do that, suddenly the chocolate is no longer so important, suddenly the alcohol no longer plays a role.


Janet Gourand

“You can’t keep relying on willpower so that’s why I think changing your thinking about alcohol is the key to making a change.” 

“Find a community. When communities get together and they’ve all got the same issue it’s such a feeling of relief, because there’s so much shame around women drinking too much, so much shame about being overweight, you realize there’s nothing wrong with me I’ve just got into this fix, with alcoholics, with food obviously we’re not alone, other people will keep you on track. Work on your thinking, on your mindset about drinking. Be a rebel, don’t be a sheep.”




Thank you for listening to another episode of Decoding Obesity!


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