There is a wide variation in people’s approach to drinking alcohol, and it’s worth considering which category will describe you:
-Drinking alcohol with safe limits
-Harmful binge drinking (episodic drinking, but above recommended limits)
-Harmful ‘chronic’ alcohol use (regularly drinking above recommended limits)
It is a good idea to actively plan a safe approach to alcohol, which means you can enjoy your social life without risking the adverse effects. Here at Brownlow Health we often see people suffering from the consequences of the latter two categories, including A+E attendances, liver damage, gastritis, mental health issues, sexual vulnerability, weight gain, addiction, and adversely affecting their degree prospects. These issues can be avoided by making yourself aware of safe limits, and planning in advance to keep within these limits.
What are the recommended safe limits?
The current UK guidelines advise limiting alcohol intake to 14 units a week for women and men. This is equivalent to drinking no more than 6 pints of average-strength beer (4% ABV) or 7 medium-sized glasses of wine (175ml, 12% ABV) a week.
Remember, these are maximum recommended limits, not targets!
In general, the more you drink above the safe limits, the more harmful to your health alcohol is likely to be. And remember, binge drinking can be harmful even though the weekly total may not seem too high. Binge drinking is generally defined as consuming eight or more units in a single session for men and six or more for women.
The DrinkAware website have developed a useful unit and calorie calculator– why not try it for yourself?
You can find some useful tips on cutting down your alcohol intake here on the change4life website.
If you think you need further help with cutting own alcohol you can:
-Make a GP or nurse appointment
-Book to see our health trainer
-Contact the Liverpool Community Alcohol Service.
Addaction, a UK based drug and alcohol treatment charity. Useful online information, and details of local services.
Sanctuary– Support for substance misusers, their families and their carers.
Strange Molecules – the essential facts on ‘legal highs’, plus help and advice
Talk to Frank. Friendly, confidential drugs advice.