Cold Turkey

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1) Immediate, complete withdrawal from something on which one has become dependent, as with an addictive drug.
2) blunt / plain language; getting down to business (American)


This refers to an addict’s skin reaction to heroin withdrawal. As an addict stops using the drug, blood is drawn toward the internal organs, thereby leaving the skin to resemble a cold, plucked turkey.

The origin dates back to 1910 and originally meant “without preparation,” referring to the ease of making a dish of cold turkey. In 1922, the expression acquired its darker connotation related to drug withdrawal.



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