Ric Flair opens up about alcohol abuse: ‘I’ll never drink again’
Ric Flair has confirmed that years of alcohol abuse led to his recent health complications, and the WWE legend swears he will never drink again.
Flair was rushed to the hospital on Aug. 11 with severe stomach pains. Doctors discovered that the 68-year-old was in the early stages of kidney failure and on the verge of congestive heart failure, and Flair says the issues with his organs were the direct result of drinking alcohol.
“It scared the s— out of me,” Flair told PEOPLE magazine. “I didn’t think I was an alcoholic, but obviously I was. … I’ll never drink again. I never want to go through this again.”
Flair said he was on life support for 10 days. Doctors placed him in a medically-induced coma and conducted surgery to remove part of his bowels. The Nature Boy also had a pacemaker inserted. He said he is recovering but “not out of the woods yet.”
In an interview with “The Dan Le Batard Show” on Thursday, Flair shared more details about his drinking habit.
“I just drank too much,” he said. “The problem is when I started in the business in 1972, we drove 3,000 miles a week and drank beer, threw the cans out the window and all that stuff — no cops, it was just a way of life. Pretty soon it was drinking the beer and then getting in a hotel and drinking the liquor. It just became a way of life. I never drank while I was working.
“It’d be like putting between 3,700 and 4,000 calories worth of booze, soda, a splash of cranberry in my body every day, like 20 drinks a day.”
Consuming so many beverages laced with sugar, calories and alcohol nearly cost him his life, Flair says. Flair said he turned to alcohol as a way to cope with pain from injuries and the grind of life in pro wrestling, noting that he never took a pain pill.
We have all grown to love the Nature Boy because of his quirky antics and awesome persona. He could have kept his health issues close to the vest, but it’s commendable that he is using them to serve as a warning for others.