In this episode of the Elevation Recovery Podcast, Chris Scott interviews Katie Lain, founder of Embody Daily and outreach specialist for Ria Health, on how she stopped drinking and recovered from alcoholism by using The Sinclair Method (TSM) after she watched Claudia Christian’s TEDx Talk on it (despite it seeming “too good to be true”).
Katie shares what her alcohol addiction was like, why it got so bad, the physical cravings for alcohol… the unhealthy living… and how TSM saved her by shutting down her desire for consuming alcohol.
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Katie Lain: I was the type of person where if you asked me why I drank, I'd be like, "Because I enjoy it." There's no real reason. There's no issues. As I started to get more sober and become less numb, all these emotions started to surface that I didn't realize I was using alcohol to suppress. And I was crying a lot. Every single day I was crying for a while and doing a lot of emotional feelings, seeing a therapist, overcoming stuff that, again, I didn't know I was using alcohol to numb out. Really taking much better care of my body. When we're drinking like that, we're just destroying our body and disrespecting our body and our mind and our heart and our spirit. And as I look back, alcohol really robbed me of my joy and my connection with God or higher power.
Katie Lain: It was just this shield that kept me in this trap, in this box. And so reconnecting to life, going in nature, appreciating the smell of flowers, taking better care of my body, eating things that are better for my health and wellbeing, which it's a lot easier to eat clean when you're not hung over. Because when I was hungover, it was so easy to eat junk food and do all of that stuff.
Announcer: Thanks for tuning into the Elevation Recovery Podcast, your Hub for addiction, recovery strategies hosted by Chris Scott and Matt Finch.
Chris Scott: Welcome everyone to the Elevation Recovery Podcast. My name's Chris Scott. And today we have a really cool guest. I was on her podcast and YouTube channel. This will also be on YouTube for those of you just listening. The other day, I'm not sure when it's going out, but anyway, we have Katie Lain from Ria Health. She is the director of community engagement and we had a really good talk the other day. So I'm excited to have a good talk today. Thanks for joining us, Katie.
Katie Lain: Yeah. So happy to be here. I feel like we could have talked for hours the other day, so I'm really happy we have another chance to connect again.
Chris Scott: Absolutely. Well, I'm sure we'll have a good talk and we'll probably have good future talks as well, but I did most of the talking last time and so you know all about my story and I don't know that much about yours, so I can already tell based on what we talked about the other day, that you have some really interesting insights to share, but let's start at the beginning. So what was your relationship like with alcohol? How did you recognize that you had a problem?
Katie Lain: Yeah, so I was someone who was maybe, I was not really interested in alcohol in my early twenties. I remember my 21st birthday people were trying to get me to take shots, which is the rite of passage, especially in the U.S. where that's the drinking age. And I was passing the shots on and sipping a beer. I wasn't really into drinking, but things quickly changed. I got into a relationship with a guy who was a heavy partier, heavy drinker, and that was we had in common. If joined him in his drinking behaviors and habits, it was a way for us to bond and in some way, so I jumped right in. I was like, "Yeah, sure. This is fun. Let's have cocktails every day and beers."
Katie Lain: And, honestly at first it was fun and I figured I'm in my earliest twenties, this is what someone my age is supposed to do. It's just a phase. I'll stop when I get older. I'll rein it back in as I get older, but I was really surprised when maybe I was in my mid twenties and I was sitting there having a cocktail during the day, which was a common thing for me back then. And I couldn't remember the last day that I hadn't had a drink of alcohol. I'd been drinking every single day for I don't even know how long and drinking a lot to black out often, day drinking whenever I could, just drinking a lot. And so I was like, "Okay, maybe I should take a break." And again, not really understanding how strong the addiction was, I figured a week off would be no big deal, but it was so hard. And I remember just craving alcohol.
Katie Lain: I would take NyQuil and sleeping pills just to go to bed as early as I could so I didn't have to have those triggers and thoughts of alcohol. And by the time the week was up, I made it. An alcohol free week, but I was just dying for a drink. And so I went right back to it and binged again and went on that long pattern of heavy drinking. And it was a cycle of this back and forth for many years, as I was trying to reign in the alcohol addiction and I couldn't. And I tried so many times like you to get sober. I'd be like, "Okay, this is the time. I'm going to do it this time." After a really bad hangover or doing something really stupid and I could make it a week or a couple of weeks. One time I made it six months but then I would always go back to it. I'd always justify it like so many people do and it just kept getting worse and worse over time.
Katie Lain: And eventually that's where I wound up finding the Sinclair Method back in 2017. And that was what really, I say it cured me of alcohol addiction. I know doctors and others don't like to use that term, but that's what it feels like.
Chris Scott: Well, that's amazing. So you have more than a few years now, since you found that method and I hear this all the time. I think literally this morning in my online course, someone had said that they were introduced to alcohol from a significant other, and it wasn't something that they typically had a relationship with at all before that. And that's a foreign experience for me, because for me, it was like the first time I drank in high school, I picked up a bottle of 99 Bananas of all things and finished it.
Katie Lain: Wow.
Chris Scott: And I was puking in my sleep and it was really bad.
Katie Lain: Wow.
Chris Scott: But that's not the case for everyone. I have to remember. And I'm just curious to know, do you know of any like family of alcohol addiction on your side? Were there any red flags that might've been there had you looked?
Katie Lain: Oh yeah, for sure. My dad got sober through AA. He's been sober over 30 years now. My mom quit drinking cold turkey, but had a problem for many years. And in my family on both sides, there's certainly alcohol addiction, but I was really naive. And, I want to warn young people out there too, because I'd never experienced addiction before. My mom smoked cigarettes and I never understood. I'm like, "Why don't you just quit?" I was like that typical person who has no idea what it's like to be addicted to something. And so going into drinking alcohol, first of all, not realizing how addictive it was because I'd been drinking since my teen years off and on partying, but never having any issues with it going long periods of time without it. And then, I was super naive to how addiction works and what it feels like.
Katie Lain: And when I talk with people, the family members of someone who's having a challenge with addiction when they just don't understand I was there as well, but it really can trap you. But yeah, there were red flags for sure, but I just figured it was something I would overcome and it wasn't going to impact me because I knew better, but I was very wrong about that.
Chris Scott: Right. Well, you think for me, the fact that I was A)Adopted and didn't know anything about my family history, but usually things aren't going great somewhere when you're adopted, somewhere along the line. And then B)The fact that I could drink a whole bottle of liquor the first time I picked it up, I should have known that there were red flags, but it's just not really talked about in our society. So, you say you found the Sinclair Method and how did you find that and what was your experience like learning to use it?
Katie Lain: Yeah. Like many people who use the method, they stumble on it. Unfortunately it's not something that's super well-known in the mainstream. If you go to your doctor, I would say most doctors don't have any idea about it. And so I stumbled on Claudia Christian's TEDx talk titled How I Overcame Alcoholism. And, I'm sure you as well, I would constantly look for answers online to this problem because I knew there had to be a solution and I just hadn't figured it out yet. So in one of my hangover days, doing a deep dive into YouTube content, I found this video and she basically summarized her experience in 15 minutes with the method and everything she said resonated so much with me, just her going back again and again to alcohol, trying to quit, not being able to, the addiction getting worse. And a part of me because she's an actress, I was like, this is too good to be true. She's just someone pushing a prescription pill.
Katie Lain: And even though I was deep in alcohol use disorder, I was also very health conscious. I hated to take pharmaceuticals. I tried to eat super clean, but the alcohol was just this thorn in my side, so to speak. So I was hesitant try it. Because I was like, I don't want to just take a pill and who knows if this even works, but really being out of options, I felt like I wanted to give it a try. So I got a prescription and that was again, back in 2017, it was harder to get a prescription then because there just weren't as many telemedicine doctors available to offer it. And now there are more, but it took me a little while to get a prescription.
Katie Lain: I finally got one and as I got started, not everyone responds right away to the method. And even in my case, it took me many, many months to see real success. But I noticed a difference almost immediately. Within the first few days of drinking on the medication, you take the medication one to two hours before your first drink. And it basically just reduces your urge to drink, it can help you drink less. It helps to quiet and eventually get rid of the cravings. But I noticed a difference right away where I couldn't finish a bottle of wine. That was my typical dose for a night, was a full bottle and I couldn't finish it. I just lost interest in it. I was able to have an alcohol free day that first week, which typically my alcohol free days would result from being super hung over and just too sick to even think about drinking.
Katie Lain: Or they would be white knuckled where I'm like, "Okay, I really need to not drink today." And so the first alcohol free day I had on TSM, I remember I went to the beach where I live and I was just like, "I don't want to drink. I don't even know what else to do." It's like six o'clock in the evening and I always drink. And I just remember feeling very awkward, but that was my first week of seeing the difference. And it was up and down for many months like it is for a lot of people where some weeks you may hardly drink at all and others, you drink a lot more, but over time the trend was just a downward trend. And after a year on the method, I quit drinking just because through the method, I genuinely lost interest in alcohol and had no desire for it. And really just created a life that I didn't need to use alcohol and didn't need to escape with alcohol anymore. So yeah.
Chris Scott: So did you find that, because I assume you were taking it in a targeted fashion. Was there any inclination to have an alcohol free day because you didn't want to take the medication or deal with any potential side effects or did you not have side effects? How did that work for you?
Katie Lain: Yeah, that's a really good question. So I was taking it in the targeted dose. So only with my alcohol consumption and the longer I was on the method, I would say that just the act of needing to take Naltrexone and wait an hour or more and drink, that felt like more effort than what it was worth. And everyone responds differently, I think most people don't really have side effects. Some people early on can feel nausea or tired or it can impact their sleep. I had mild stomach upset, but it went away within like a week of the medication. But the longer I was on it, at about eight months on The Sinclair Method, I drinking about once a month. And so I was only taking that pill once a month. And so I started to feel those side effects again. And so, yeah, just even the thought of taking the pill, maybe having those side effects and drinking, it was almost like a deterrent for me to drink.
Katie Lain: So yeah, I would say that definitely needing to take that pill, it can be disappointing because people still want to drink or they want to have that relationship with alcohol. And some people have no side effects. That was just my experience, but it was like a, "Awe man, alcohol's not what it was to me and now it's not as enjoyable." So it was this process of letting go of alcohol as I knew it, but it was so worth it. And it was so rewarding to just be able to be like, "Should I have a drink? Nah, it doesn't feel worth it. I'll go have an ice tea instead or something." Very empowering.
Chris Scott: Some people might be wondering about your compliance, did you find that it took discipline or willpower to take that pill and wait an hour because I'm sure there are people who are thinking, I wouldn't do it. I would just stop taking the pills so I could drink, but I'm sure my speculation not having done The Sinclair method, but knowing the statistics, which is that it works for 80% of people or somewhere around there. And is that most people do comply because they're noticing progress. Is that your experience?
Katie Lain: Yeah, it was. There were a couple times where I was tempted to not take it. If you're in a social setting and all of a sudden sudden someone's like, "Oh, here you want some wine?" And you can easily take it and not take the pill. But thankfully for whatever reason, I was disciplined enough to take it or just would choose not to drink if I hadn't taken it. For others, that can be a challenge for people, especially if they're not totally ready to change their relationship to alcohol, because drinking on the Naltrexone, it is a different experience.
Katie Lain: It can still be fun and enjoyable, but it's different and people feel it in different ways. But I do see people who get on the method, maybe they're just not totally ready yet. And they'll skip doses, which really is not conducive to success on the method. I coach people through The Sinclair Method as well and I see if someone's really struggling with success on the method, that's often the first question I ask is, how compliant are you? And because that can be just such a hindrance, it's almost like don't do the method if you're not willing to be fully compliant because it sets you back and it becomes very discouraging.
Chris Scott: Yeah, that makes sense. So I've been open about the fact that I was actually prescribed Naltrexone in order to "maintain abstinence" and there's no research showing that it helps to do that at all. And I think I had mentioned this the other day that I had begun to maybe pharmacologically extinguish my desire to work out because I was just taking the pill. And for some reason I was taking it in the morning and at night, which is kind of dumb. And most people watching this will understand that what Naltrexone does is it's an opioid antagonist. So it basically blocks the pleasure that you get from things which is really useful when it's done in a targeted fashion, not useful when it's done in a blanket fashion. So if there's anyone out there who has been prescribed in the way I have, I would recommend that they seek your counsel on this matter. I did an interview with Claudia Christian, which is a lot of fun, about two months ago. So was there anything else that played a big role for you in recovering from addiction, whether holistically or exercise, diet, or mindset stuff?
Katie Lain: So much more. I get comments sometimes on my YouTube channel, diehard AA, people who are like, "Oh, you can't just take a pill to fix your problem." Which I agree with, Naltrexone is just the first step. It gives you that space within to be able to do the other work. When I was trying to reduce my drinking before, I was obsessively thinking about alcohol. Even if I was a week, two weeks, a month sober, I was triggered constantly by people, places, smells, things, thoughts. I couldn't escape alcohol, even though I hadn't touched it. So with the Naltrexone, it quiets that and gets rid of that over time. So that, I remember within my first week, I was like, "I'm not thinking about alcohol." And it made me realize, I'm thinking about alcohol a lot more than I even recognized.
Katie Lain: But the Naltrexone was really just the first step. And I was the type of person where if you asked me why I drank, I'd be like, "Because I enjoy it." Like there's no real reason. There's no issues. In Claudia's Ted Talk, she talks about there was no trauma that was driving me to drink, but as I started to get more sober and become less numb, all these emotions started to surface that I didn't realize I was using alcohol to suppress. And I was crying a lot. Every single day I was crying for a while and doing a lot of emotional healing, seeing a therapist, overcoming stuff that, again, I didn't know I was using alcohol to numb out. And then with that as well, just really taking much better care of my body. When we're drinking like that, we're just destroying our body and disrespecting our body and our mind and our heart and our spirit.
Katie Lain: And I feel like as I look back, alcohol really robbed me of my joy and my connection with God or higher power. It was just this shield that kept me in this trap, in this box. And so reconnecting to life, going in nature, appreciating the smell of flowers, taking better care of my body, eating things that are better for my health and wellbeing, which it's a lot easier to eat clean when you're not hung over because when I was hung over, it was so easy to eat junk food and do all of that stuff. But I will say it was absolutely a healing process. And I know in our talk, you talked about how your program is covering all the bases of physical, mental, spiritual, psychological.
Katie Lain: Forgive me if I'm not saying it correctly, but it's everything. And Naltrexone was the key for me at least to get started so that I had that space to do all of the other work. I see people not do as well on the method if they're only relying on the medication and not changing their habits, not finding meaning in life.
Katie Lain: I read Viktor Frankl's Man's Search for Meaning and I leapt at that book. It was just so important to me to see that because I didn't have any meaning in my life before alcohol. And I remember saying hobbies, my hobby is drinking. I don't do anything else. Sure I'll work out, but it's just to make myself feel better for all the alcohol I was drinking. But lots of other things. And now, I'm almost three years sober and I'm learning now so much more about nutrition and supplements and learning a lot from your content and how important that is. And seeing people who are struggling on The Sinclair Method, add these healthy supplements or things to their diet and it's making a difference. So yeah, it's good to see that. And it's way more than just the pill, but that's the starting point.
Chris Scott: No, I think it can be a really important catalyst for a lot of people. And I've said that I would have used it if I had known about it. I was pissed off when I learned that I had been prescribed it incorrectly. And at that point, there was a thought flickered in my mind. I said, well, maybe I could try pharmacological extinction. I'd have to drink again and do The Sinclair Method But I thought, nope, I already quit. So I'm going to keep this up. Nutrient repair ultimately worked for me. I've been served alcohol accidentally. I had a horrible, stiff gin drink. There was supposed to be a mocktail several years ago. And I remember it seeping down into my system and I was like, "Oh, what do I do? Is this a relapse? Do I just go all out?" And I was like, "Nope."
Chris Scott: So I sat there with it and it didn't even feel good. So, something happens when your brain rewires, when your biochemistry chemistry re-balances. And it sounds like you've done a lot of things that have rewired your brain along with The Sinclair Method, which could be the most important early piece and really the catalyst to get you there. So that's really cool. And it sounds like you're continuing to optimize, we talked a little bit before this episode started about diet experiments and things like that. For me, optimization never ends. I say I'm recovered from addiction, but I'm still figuring out life. I've no idea what the best diet is for me. I'm trying things all the time, workout routines tweaking. But as long as my baseline is where it is at least compared to where it was during my drinking years, then I'm good.
Chris Scott: I can afford to slip a little bit. I can afford to go up for sure. But it's good to feel good and be able to play with things rather than be hanging on for dear life with a toxic substance.
Katie Lain: Yeah.
Chris Scott: So yeah.
Katie Lain: So true.
Chris Scott: I appreciate you talking with everyone about that. I know we have a lot people who take my course or have read the book or just perusing blog articles who are wondering about The Sinclair Method and I'm a big proponent of that and other medication assisted treatment, but that seems to be the winner in a lot of ways. So I'm curious, how did you find Ria Health?
Katie Lain: So they found me actually. Claudia's Ted Talk where she went out and told the world about her struggle with alcohol was really inspiring for me because I remember thinking when I watched it, if this really works for me, I can't keep it to myself. I've got to share it with the world essentially. And so after a month on the method and seeing major changes in myself, though I was still drinking quite a bit, like five days a week. I had seen some major changes. The cravings were going away. I was having alcohol free days. I was drinking less when I was drinking. I wasn't blacking out anymore. So after a month on the method, I started making a vlog about it. And I was just saying, "Hey, I'm a random person that this method has worked for."
Katie Lain: And just got so much outpouring, encouragement back that kept me going and logging my monthly experience and then having interviews with people and still create content on my YouTube today. But ultimately that's how Ria Health found me a few years ago. They saw my videos and just were like, "Hey, do you want to come work with us?" And I hadn't heard about the program, unfortunately, they were just starting out right when I was getting going on The Sinclair Method. So I didn't even know that they existed, but looking at Ria and what they offer, they offer The Sinclair Method as well as other medications or four or five other medications that are shown to be effective for alcohol use disorder, sometimes they're combined with Naltrexone and sometimes they're instead of Naltrexone, but their program, I think it's just a great option for people who want to go on The Sinclair Method because you get the medication treatment, you work with the physician, you have a coach.
Katie Lain: I know you're aware they have a breathalyzer. That's a little tiny breathalyzer and people use just to objectively measure how they're doing because with The Sinclair Method, the progress is often slow and steady. Again, some weeks it's up some weeks it's down. And so to have that data can be really helpful for people looking back. But a few years ago, they just found me with my videos and brought me onto their team, which I've been super grateful for because they're working to reach the whole U.S. with medication treatment and other evidence-based approaches for alcohol use disorder. And it's all through tele-health, which makes it so accessible. People join our program, they don't have to leave work or even tell anyone. A lot of people do it discreetly without telling anyone. And it's amazing that their friends will be like, "Oh, I noticed you're drinking less." And they're like, "Oh yeah."
Katie Lain: You can keep it to yourself or you can share it with the world like I have, but it gives people that option. It's not like you have to pick up your life and go away to rehab and be in detox and tell your work and family and all of that. It's a more discreet option, which for me comes with a lot less stigma and being a harm reduction approach, the thought of quitting alcohol and going abstinent was so hard for me to wrap my head around before The Sinclair Method and so harm reduction and just knowing, "Okay, I can still drink, but it's going to help me drink in levels that are not harmful." That was a very approachable way to start treating my alcohol addiction. And then with time, I just fell out of love with alcohol. I was like, "Okay, I'm going to quit now." It's really easy to quit because I just don't like it anymore.
Chris Scott: Do you remember when you got to that point? I'm just curious because I would imagine one of the benefits of The Sinclair Method is that it removes alcohol as the forbidden fruit. You can have it, you just have to take the pill and then you get the pharmacological extinction or you stop desiring it in the same way. It's a different experience. You unlearn that craving, but did you wake up one day and just think, "All right, I'm done."
Katie Lain: No, it took me about four months of sobriety before I was ready to put that stake in the ground. I had been thinking about it right around the year mark on The Sinclair Method. Because by that time I was drinking once a month and I remember my husband's from France, and so we were going to go over to France for a three week trip. And because I was drinking once a month and taking the Naltrexone once a month, I was starting to feel more hangovers from drinking. My body just wasn't used to having alcohol in my system anymore. So I was like, I'm not going to drink for three weeks on this trip just because I don't want to feel hungover or anything. And then that three weeks morphed into a month and then two months and three months.
Katie Lain: And I honestly just kept not drinking, but I remember specifically being like, "I'm not going to say I'm sober yet." I'm not ready. I might want to drink in the future because I didn't want to claim that and then want to drink and have that battle within myself. But after four months of no drinking after The Sinclair Method, so I was on the method for a year then I didn't drink for four months. And by that four month mark, I was like, "I think I'm claiming sobriety now." And I honestly have not looked back. I still have Naltrexone. I think it's probably expired by now, but part of me just doesn't want to throw it away. It's a safety net, but I've honestly had no craving, no desire to drink.
Katie Lain: The only times I've thought about drinking is when I go to Wine Country, I live near Sonoma. And those were always the times when I would wine taste and get really drunk. And I remember when you and I were talking, we were talking about wine tasting and instead of alcohol and wine, we were just picturing the valleys, which we were saying, "Oh yeah, that's a sign of recovery." Which I agree. But those are the only times when I'm back there, I'm thinking, "Oh, that glass of wine could be good." But it's more just like a bleeding thought as opposed to a craving that's bothering me and won't leave me alone.
Chris Scott: No, I had another flashback to when I in detox and there was some small group AA style meeting going on. It was actually more of a group therapy session. And there was a guy there who really didn't want to be there. I think his family had dragged him in and he was a doctor. And I remember him, I had forgotten this until now. This was about seven years ago. He said something like, "Well, if I go to France, I'm not going to not drink wine." I remember that stuck out for me for some reason. So it is possible to go to France and not drink wine and have a good time.
Katie Lain: Totally. And it made me realize how I just romanticized it so much. And I think that's hard to grasp when you're still craving it because the craving is so much stronger than our logic. But as I went there and I genuinely didn't really want to drink because of The Sinclair Method, it was really easy. And yeah, people made fun of me, but I drink espresso and other things, but I don't need the alcohol at all.
Chris Scott: And there's so many alcohol free options. I wish they'd been around in 2014. I think at the time, I don't even know if we had [inaudible 00:27:44]. Maybe that had just come out. I think that was kind of new. And then Bubly came out and then all these zero sugar Kombuchas. Yeah. And they'd also have hard versions of things that have come out since then. Whenever I look down the alcohol aisle, I'm like, "I didn't know this had alcohol in it." It's like alcoholic grape juice now. Why don't we just buy wine? What's going on over there? They've run out of things to market it since.
Katie Lain: I know.
Chris Scott: But yeah, there's so many things. And, at the end of the day for me, once I realized that all the feel-good chemicals I needed that alcohol was going to release for me, they're in my brain anyway. If I can find ways to release them, I can have a great time. And for me, if I go to a wedding, I think I have a wedding in Santa Barbara in fall. And the last time I had gone there, I went there and Santa Maria during my drinking years. And I just drank my way through that section of California. But now I'll be getting my workout in. I'll be getting an endorphin high, a nice little pump, I'll have mental clarity. I used to have to drink to get a certain level of mental clarity because I would have been hung over and unresponsive and not witty and sharp. So I would drink to get mental clarity. It's like everything was backwards or inverted.
Chris Scott: So, that was just a little aside there, but it sounds to me like you've basically transcended alcohol and it's really cool that you have the Naltrexone expired or not. I'm not sure I believe that medication actually expires. I feel like that's the drug company is wanting you to go re-up on it, but who knows, maybe. Don't take my advice, I'm not a doctor, but I think I actually probably have some expired Naltrexone from that experience because I had kept it once I learned about the proper use of Naltrexone, I figured, well, if I ever do slip, at least I have this.
Katie Lain: Yeah.
Chris Scott: It's a really good back step.
Katie Lain: It really is. And like you said, it makes alcohol, it's no longer that forbidden fruit. I remember trying get sober before and thinking about a life of sobriety and it was just so daunting and drinking is much better. It's so much more worth it to have these hangovers than think about a sober life forever, but that's because you're battling the cravings and things. But I like how you said that you're recovered, past tense because I know people sometimes whether they're 20 years sober or two years sober, they'll say, "Oh, I'm in recovery." And for me I felt recovered as well through The Sinclair Method. And the alcohol addiction was a thing of my past. And like you said, yeah, you're constantly refining and making yourself healthier and optimizing your life. But I feel recovered. I'm not taking it one day at a time.
Katie Lain: I'm not triggered by a bottle of wine sitting there. I'm totally indifferent to it. I've never smoked a cigarette, so I'm not worried that I'm going to go out and have a cigarette. Or if there's a pack of cigarettes, it doesn't bother me. I'm not a smoker. And so it's become the same thing with alcohol, thanks to The Sinclair Method and healing and life as well and on all other levels. But alcohol, it becomes your total crutch. Like you were saying, when you're going to the weddings and you need to drink to feel better. You are totally reliant on that substance. And when I ask people, who've reached extinction on The Sinclair Method, what's one word you would describe. And so often they say freedom and you don't know how free you can feel, how good you can feel once you're out of that trap of alcohol addiction. It's amazing.
Chris Scott: Yeah. I sometimes say I still have a drinking problem. I just don't drink alcohol anymore. I compulsively sip green tea and water and all sorts of other things. So there are certain habits that you can keep up as far as I have oral fixation. I think I'll always have that, that might've been part of who I've always been. I think in high school, I used to go to class with a gallon of water. People would make fun of me because I would just be drinking. I've always gone and pee all the time, too. I just figured out a small bladder, but as long as I'm not drinking alcohol, it's fine. And I could use all these other things. I probably have 65 different teas in my cabinet and learning about all the different teas and the benefits kept me... There was a good psychological distraction from alcohol when I was in that early recovery period where it seemed to consume my mind. [crosstalk 00:32:07] Sorry, go on.
Katie Lain: That's such a good point because that's the habitual piece. I talk to people who are on the method and they always have wine with dinner and they don't really want it, but they can't stop. So they put in a Kombucha or something else and it can make all the difference. So just that ritual of having something to drink can be such a powerful tool.
Chris Scott: Yeah, absolutely. So do you have any anecdotes or stories about people using the Ria system or who you've helped with The Sinclair Method that you think our listeners might benefit from hearing?
Katie Lain: Yeah. Sometimes people ask me whether or not medication treatment is for them. Is my drinking too bad for this method, because some people think once you've reached a certain point where you'll have withdrawals if you stop or you're drinking morning to night, they think that the method won't work for them. And I just have to say, I see it almost every day where people are drinking up to a half gallon bottle of vodka morning to night, can't go without it. One man in particular that comes to mind, that was where he started. He was a retired police officer. And within six months he was having a couple of beers a month with pizza or something. It was just amazing to see his transformation through The Sinclair Method.
Katie Lain: And the same thing, too. I've known women who just have a couple of glasses of wine every night, but that's problematic for them because they see it interfering with the way they take care of their kids or the way they're performing at work. Even though it's not a ton, it's really problematic for them and the method can help them to reduce as well. So, I think whether or not we have an alcohol problem, it's such a personal choice and we also have to be really ready to make that change. So whether you're drinking two glasses of wine a night or a bottle of wine at night, or more than that, it's really up to the person to decide what's problematic for them. And I've seen medication treatment work for the whole spectrum. If someone's concerned with withdrawal, I've seen people get on the medication and especially at Ria because they have clinicians that you work with that can help you through the process, but they'll get on Naltrexone and just slowly reduce their drinking over time so they can avoid or drastically minimize the effects of withdrawal.
Katie Lain: So yeah, it can work for all spectrums of alcohol use disorder. So just to put that out there and I've been an advocate for this method and working for Ria Health for about three years now. And so I see these stories every single day of people who tried rehab however many times, tried inpatient, outpatient, cold turkey, AA, and all these programs work for some people, but they don't work for everyone. And so I've seen people where they land at TSM as their last hope and it's the answer they were looking for. So it's really amazing that this method is out there.
Chris Scott: Yeah. I think trial and error is the name of the game with all these methods, with all these approaches. And then even within some of these methods. My motto in early recovery was to keep what I learned, good things from various things, including AA. Discard, what was not useful. And I did that with nutrient repair. There are supplements that some of my clients have loved that I can't stand. I just didn't respond well to them. But, we're all unique. We all need different things in the big picture and in the details as well. I did want to mention that I recognized Ria Health. I had gotten an email to appear on your YouTube channel. And I get a lot of emails, some of which it's best that I don't respond.
Chris Scott: It's hard to keep up sometimes, but I've recognized Ria Health because I had the app on my phone from some clients who had used Ria Health in the past. And I understood that there was a connection with The Sinclair Method and the breathalyzer system. I think it's really cool that you all over there are furthering this digital recovery revolution because a lot of people can't go to inpatient centers and even if they do, they end up going again and again and again, depending on the quality or the fit of that rehab center for them. And a lot of people are finding that they can use services like Ria Health and courses like mine or one-on-one tele counseling or coaching and so the internet is really a good thing for people who are trying to recover. And I think now is a great time to recover. A lot of people have had a really tough year and a half maybe close to two years at this point.
Katie Lain: Yeah.
Chris Scott: And so it's really good. I also think you have a really uplifting vibe and positive energy and it's really nice to talk to you. So can you tell us where we can find you and Ria Health online?
Katie Lain: Yeah. So Ria Health is just riahealth.com and Ria stands for Reduction In Alcohol. So it's R-I-A. And from there you can get all the information. They're currently offering the program in 22 states with the goal to be in all 50 states at the end of the year. And they're in network with a lot of major insurance providers. So, that's a great option it can make the program very affordable, sometimes free for people, which is awesome.
Katie Lain: And then I, myself, I have my own video vlog on YouTube Embody Daily, and it's embodydaily.com and I've just become a diehard advocate for The Sinclair Method and recovery. Like you were saying, there are so many resources out there, what you offer with nutrition and supplements. I'm finding that after coaching people through The Sinclair Method for a while, I'm finding that to be the missing key of like, "Okay, what are you eating? What are you putting in your body?" And it makes so much sense. Of course you need to be well to get well. So I think people, even if they do join Ria's program or do go on The Sinclair Method, if they're looking for other resources as well, because there's a lot of information out there to supplement their recovery and in whatever is needed for them.
Chris Scott: Okay. I couldn't agree more. So great to talk to. I'm sure we'll have many more awesome and productive chats. Thank you for being on the show.
Katie Lain: Absolutely. Thanks for having me.
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Great Podcast – Many people throughout the world are helped by both of you. Thanks for sharing your experience!
Thank you Dr. Umhau – right back at you, and here’s a link for anyone here wanting to listen to my recent podcast episode with you!