Cold Turkey: How to Use the Useful Phrase “Cold Turkey” Correctly?

The phrase cold turkey might be often heard during an English conversation, but what is the meaning of this phrase? In this article, we are going to take a look at not only the meaning but also where the term finds its origins. We are also going to see some examples of the phrase being used in a conversation in order to allow us to further understand how it works.

Cold Turkey

Cold Turkey Meaning

The common idiomatic phrase cold turkey means to quit doing something, such as a bad habit, completely and without any assistance.

Cold Turkey Origin

There are many theories as to the origin of the phrase cold turkey, However, one of them comes from the similarities between a dead turkey and a recovering drug addict, in that both are cold, moist and have goosebumps.

“Cold Turkey” Examples

Examples in Statements

Let’s now take a look at some examples of the phrase cold turkey in a sentence.

The first sentence is one being said by someone quitting smoking.

  • I have decided I am not going to smoke anymore, I am going to quit cold turkey.

The next statement is one being made by a friend to another friend who is staying off alcohol.

  • You are doing really well not drinking, I can’t believe you did it cold turkey.

More useful examples:

  • I quit cold turkey some 25 years ago, but the specialists simply shrug off this kind of information.
  • I stopped smoking cold turkey and had to be hospitalized.
  • G.M. has stated it will go cold turkey on incentives, and it has.
  • Mary is a cold turkey. She looks down upon all her classmates.
  • The quickest way to get her off the drug was to let her go cold turkey.

Conversation Examples

The idiom cold turkey might be heard in a variety of situations. Let’s take a look at some examples of conversations in order to show what you might hear.

The first conversation is taking place between two friends in a bar.

  • Person 1: “I’ll have a beer, what will you have?”
  • Person 2: “Just a lemonade please.”
  • Person 1: “Are you not drinking anymore?”
  • Person 2: “No, it makes me feel bad so I’m going cold turkey.”

The second conversation is one taking place between a doctor and his patient.

  • Person 1: “It has been years that you have been using cannabis, I think it’s time you quit.”
  • Person 2: “It will be hard.”
  • Person 1: “Yes, it will and I’m not suggesting you go cold turkey, do it gradually.”

Other Ways to Say the Idiom

You might like to use other words and phrases to refer to the meaning of the term cold turkey.

Here are some alternative things you could say.

  • Abstaining
  • Giving up totally
  • Stop
  • Quit

Cold Turkey Meaning | Image

Cold Turkey