In this article, I’m going to discuss the best alcohol detox supplements. We will review a number of highly effective supplements for alcoholics that include many basic vitamins and go well beyond them.
Years ago, I had alcohol cravings that were so bad that I wondered if they would be a permanent part of my life. I began to research the subject of natural alcohol detox.
I discovered that quality supplements can significantly alleviate alcohol withdrawal.
I read every book that I could find on the subject of alcohol withdrawal supplements. I experimented with dozens of supplements for alcohol withdrawal, most of them ordered from reputable companies through Amazon.com. I did all of this while training clients in the gym who were unaware of this real passion, but who often benefited from my newfound expertise in nutrition and mental health.
Acute alcohol withdrawal occurs when alcoholics stop drinking. Symptoms can include:
- Intense anxiety (for me, a sense of impending doom)
- Intense insomnia
- Crippling depression
- Seizures (in extreme cases)
While acute alcohol withdrawal typically ends within a week, post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS) can last for up to a year. Symptoms are typically less extreme variations of acute withdrawal symptoms:
- General anxiety and depression
- Lack of motivation (or a sense of blah!)
- Mood swings
- Inability to focus
These symptoms often lead alcoholics right back to the bottle. Through independent research, I have identified a number of supplements for alcohol detox and withdrawal that actually work to relieve these symptoms.
Whether you’ve just quit drinking or you’re struggling with symptoms of PAWS, this list of supplements and vitamins for alcohol withdrawal can seriously change your life for the better.
- Why Do We Need Supplements For Alcohol Detox?
- Top 20 Supplements for Natural Alcohol Detox
- Scientific Research
- Benzodiazepines For Alcohol Withdrawal
- What vitamins do you need when you quit drinking?
- What can help me stop drinking?
- Can I stop drinking by myself?
- What are the first signs of liver damage from alcohol?
- What supplements are good for recovering alcoholics?
- Is there a supplement to stop drinking?
- What is the best multivitamin for alcoholics?
- Does alcohol deplete vitamins and minerals?
Why Do We Need Supplements For Alcohol Detox?
Because alcohol depletes so many important nutrients from the body, the root causes of alcohol withdrawal symptoms are often nutrient deficiencies that have built up over time.
Many people suffer needlessly and even relapse because they do not know about the benefits of even the most rudimentary vitamins for alcohol withdrawal. No amount of positive thinking, group therapy, or spiritual guidance can help when the cause of your problem is physiological.
Unfortunately, the average multivitamin is not enough to put an end to alcohol withdrawals. I found relief over time, gradually, and I tried many supplements that did not work. The process was worthwhile because every now and then, I would discover a miracle supplement that would catapult my sense of well-being to new heights.
Supplements for alcohol detox and recovery fall into six categories:
- Anti-anxiety agents
- EFAs (essential fatty acids)
- Amino Acids
Rest assured that there are compounds from each of these categories that work incredibly well for alleviating alcohol withdrawals and restoring healthy body chemistry.
These supplements do not need to be taken indefinitely.
In my experience, my nutritional deficiencies were resolved after one to three months of supplementation.
Whether you’ve suffered from alcohol withdrawals or you’re trying to help someone else, you’ll want to become familiar with the alcohol withdrawal vitamins and supplements listed below.
For a basic understanding of how nutrient repair for alcohol addiction works, check out my in-depth video below and be sure to read the rest of this article!
Top 20 Supplements for Natural Alcohol Detox
Review the following types of alcohol detox supplementation. We’ll dive into each type in related articles to help you determine whether or not you think these alcohol detox supplements are right for you.
Vitamins and Minerals
Regularly consuming alcohol impairs your body’s ability to properly absorb vitamins thereby inducing a variety of substance abuse symptoms such as bone loss, dehydration and more.
This lack of vitamins and minerals can make alcohol recovery more difficult with worsened withdrawal symptoms.
To make alcohol withdrawal and detox easier, we recommend taking:
Why do I recommend these? In a related article, I share why these are the best vitamins and minerals for alcohol detox as well as some signs of deficiency.
Fatty Acids and Amino Acids
The neurotransmitters in your brain produce dopamine to help you “feel good”, however alcohol consumption interrupts these neurotransmitters. Unfortunately, regular consumption means addicts require drinking in order to feel good, although the feeling isn’t sustainable.
The good news is that, over time, you can repair your liver, regulate amino acids and retrain your brain to produce dopamine.
There are certain fatty and amino acids that I found useful in my alcohol recovery:
- Omega-3 Oil
- DL-Phenylalanine (DLPA)
- N-acetyl Cysteine (NAC)
I discuss the benefits of these 7 fatty acids and amino acids for alcohol detox in much more detail in a related article.
Alcohol abuse is a direct abuse of your liver and is the leading cause of liver disease in the U.S. But there’s hope, even after years of abuse because your liver has the fascinating ability to regenerate itself over time.
In addition to drinking lots of water and healthy eating, there are natural compounds that assist with alcohol detox including:
- Hemp-Derived CBD
Learn more about why and how to use these natural compounds for alcohol detox.
Although herbal alcohol detox isn’t a new concept, it hasn’t been widely accepted in the West as many experts and medical professionals turned to the use of pharmaceuticals for alcohol withdrawal.
Fortunately, there are studies being conducted and Ayurvedic professionals recommend the use of herbal remedies for alcohol detox. The following herbs have been recommended:
- DHM (dihydromyricetin)
- Milk Thistle
- Mucuna Pruriens
- Passion Flower
Here’s everything you need to know about using herbal supplements for alcohol withdrawal.
Research has shown that there are major benefits to using alcohol withdrawal vitamins and other supplements:
There are few studies on the results of using herbs for alcohol withdrawals and recovery. I can vouch for their efficacy, as can many other people. More research is clearly needed!
2021 Update: The past few years have brought the research I called for years ago, with studies now vindicating CBD, DHM, and milk thistle.
Benzodiazepines For Alcohol Withdrawal
Benzodiazepines are anti-anxiety and anticonvulsant drugs that must be prescribed by doctors. They are often a necessary part of detox for people who have been drinking very heavily for months or years.
Benzodiazepines activate a neurotransmitter called GABA (gamma amino butyric acid), preventing seizures that can arise as fatal complications of alcohol withdrawals.
Although I’m a strong supporter of using supplementation for natural alcohol detox, I mention benzodiazepines here for three reasons:
- Ativan saved me from potentially life-threatening withdrawals
- I easily tapered off of Ativan under a doctor’s supervision
- You may be able to obtain a prescription to detox without expensive treatment
Learn more about the role of benzodiazepines for alcohol withdrawal.
I hope that this article helps you find relief from your detox symptoms much faster than I did. There are some other effective natural alcohol detox supplements that I don’t have room to include here, so please subscribe and stay tuned for future articles.
As you can see, I have personally researched and taken everything on this list. Alcohol addiction is not an emotional problem; it is a biochemical disorder that can be addressed and resolved.
People often ask me if I still take all of the supplements I’ve written about. The answer is that I only take supplements as needed. I have a medicine cabinet filled with the aforementioned supplements, and it feels good to know that I have them just in case I need them.
Sometimes, I’ll take passion flower or L-theanine to help me get to sleep. Other times, I’ll take ashwagandha or rhodiola rosea to help balance my system during a stressful day. I’ve found that if I need an extra mental boost to stay up and finish some work, mucuna pruriens does the trick.
Everyone’s biochemistry is different. I know which supplements work for me as tools, buffers, or lines of defense against stress, insomnia, and poor health. Figuring out which ones worked best for me was an empowering process of self-discovery, and the same will be true for you.
I often take DLPA before busy mornings – it is probably my favorite supplement on this list. One of my coaching clients recently told me that this amino acid worked instantly for him, staving off a panic attack at work. (He’s been conquering post-acute withdrawal for four months now and I couldn’t be more proud of him.)
If you have any questions about alcohol withdrawal vitamins or supplements, please post them in the comment box below.
What vitamins do you need when you quit drinking?
There are at least 15-20 nutrients that have been clinically shown to help people quit drinking and repair their bodies. Which ones are most beneficial for you will depend on your biochemistry. Often there is a process of trial and error to determine the best possible supplement regimens, but luckily there are effective programs that can help.
What can help me stop drinking?
Quitting drinking is best done with support, along with a solid recovery plan. Take into account your unique situation and try to determine the factors that contributed to your drinking problem. Address these issues while being sure to repair your body from alcohol’s damage.
Can I stop drinking by myself?
The majority of people who try to quit drinking by themselves will fall back into old habits. There are many resources that offer help, and it’s crucial to find one that suits your needs. If your goal is to begin an empowering, holistic adventure to start living your best life beyond alcohol, check out Total Alcohol Recovery 2.0.
What are the first signs of liver damage from alcohol?
Signs of liver damage from alcohol include fatigue, swelling or pain in the upper right abdomen, nausea or vomiting, loss of appetite, and yellowing of the eyes and fingernails. Supplements like milk thistle have been shown to protect the liver from alcohol damage. The only way to protect the liver long-term is to eliminate or drastically reduce alcohol consumption.
What supplements are good for recovering alcoholics?
B-vitamins are a good place to start for recovering alcoholics, who may have deficiencies in these cofactors needed to produce neurotransmitters and feel-good hormones. These are just the tip of the iceberg, however, and people who embark on a program of nutrient repair often use amino acid therapy, multi-nutrient blends, and herbs backed by science for supporting the brain-body system.
Is there a supplement to stop drinking?
Most people use a combination of supplements to help stabilize the brain and body while quitting drinking. While there is no single compound that is as effective as multi-nutrient blends, a good place to start is BR Restore, which covers many bases of nutrient repair.
What is the best multivitamin for alcoholics?
Alcoholics who begin a program of nutrient repair often incorporate a multivitamin, among other supplements, to help cover a wide range of nutritional bases. A potent multivitamin like Legion Triumph is often a good idea, and results are generally even better when combined with amino acids found in supplements like BR Restore.
Does alcohol deplete vitamins and minerals?
Alcohol has been shown to cause deficiencies in essential nutrients, including vitamins and minerals that are needed to support detoxification and other biochemical processes. If you have been drinking alcohol to excess, be sure to educate yourself about how exactly alcohol causes nutrient deficiencies.
More Alcohol Detox FAQs can be found here.
Good morning! I have been listening to your podcasts every day for about a month now and love love them. Although I haven’t quite drinking alcohol completely I have cut back for sure and incorporated some supplements that you and Matt talk about. That being said, the Vitamin B makes me all amped up! I have high energy naturally, especially in the morning. How important is this supplement to changing the biochemicals in my brain? Memory loss is probably the biggest symptom I have dealt with since I started drinking 4 to 5 to times a week after work. Should… Read more »
I followed yoface her ur suggestions on some of the supplements. I was already on a pretty intense regimen to begin with. Took three times but now I am alcohol free for 26 weeks 3 days, AND I have alcohol in the house. Trying to help my DIL face her demons.
How much dlpa should I take per day to help with serious withdrawl ?
Hi Sean, please see a doctor for assistance with severe withdrawal. If that’s not an option, tapering down on alcohol over a period of days is safer than quitting cold turkey. DLPA and other natural compounds can make it easier to cut down on alcohol, but I myself went the medical route for acute detox (3-7 days) and began my Nutrient Repair regimen after that, to prevent subsequent cravings and post-acute withdrawal (PAWS) symptoms from derailing my progress. We cover these topics in-depth in my online course, Total Alcohol Recovery 2.0. Hope this helps buddy!
Hey can we take all these vitamins together in one go every morning? Thank you
Hi Zos, it’s not uncommon for people to take a lot of supplements at once! Trial and error can be useful in early recovery to determine what works best for you. For further info on how to create your optimal custom blueprint for recovery, including supplement regimens, check out Total Alcohol Recovery 2.0!
Niacin Vitamin B3 warning – taking this OFTEN causes a skin reaction that is quite uncomfortable. I just experienced it and freaked out but now am reading it is normal albeit not pleasant. Bottle warns: This product may cause a temporary flush, itching, or tingling red rash on the skin particularly if taken on an empty stomach. This reaction is normal. Discontinue use and consult healthcare professional if you experience unwanted side effects or prolonged discomfort. I confirmed this on my web searches as well. Should subside in an hour, crossing my red fingers.
Try the “Slow Niacin”… It cuts down on the flushing. It happened to me the first time I used the regular niacin at work and my ears turned bright red and I freaked out. Quite embarrassing too 😆