Get the Measure
It might be raining but (honestly!) the BBQ season is on the horizon and with lots of people planning their summer holidays, North Lincolnshire residents are being encouraged to get the measure of their drinking habits
Drinking more than your recommended daily limit can have disastrous effects on your health and family life and health professionals aim to call time on excessive boozing by making people aware of just how much they drink.
Nowadays alcohol features prominently in just about every celebration and ritual you can think of here in the UK. Bottles are cracked open at weddings and birthdays, Bank Holidays and barbecues. Drinks are poured to celebrate a new job, passing an exam or just enjoying a night out with the girls or boys. Many people regularly open a bottle for a quiet drink with their other half or enjoy a swift one after work. With so much booze flowing, how do know whether you are risking your health by having an extra glass?
Maria Callaghan, a Health Improvement Specialist with NHS North Lincolnshire, stresses how important it is to always be aware how many units of alcohol you are drinking.
“Most of us drink sensibly and suffer little effects,” Maria explains. “But if someone is starting to drink above the recommended rate they may find their energy levels begin to suffer and they risk problems like memory loss, depression, insomnia, impotence as well as putting themself in danger of injury. As alcohol intake increases further so does the risk of relationship problems, alcohol dependence, high blood pressure, liver disease and even cancer!”
To avoid damaging their health, women should not drink in excess of 2 to 3 and men 3 to 4 units of alcohol daily. However, bear in mind that a pint of premium beer is likely to contain 3 units and a 250ml glass of wine 2 units then this allowance isn’t as generous as you might think as you reach into the fridge for a top-up.
Another sobering thought is that each single unit of alcohol takes one full hour to be processed by the body. This means that an average bottle of wine will take 9 or 10 hours to be processed by the liver and exit the body.
There are lots of tools available to help you keep an eye on the units you’re drinking. For example, visit http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/alcohol/Pages/Alcoholtracker.aspx for a useful unit calculator and lots of tips how to reduce the amount of alcohol you drink. There is even an App you can download for your iPhone to help you keep track of your drinks on a night out.
- News Added: 04 May 2012