Having fun when drinking
April 15, 2019

Holding your alcohol

In moderation, drinking alcohol can be a sociable and fun activity. Drinking up to two beers or two glasses of wine per day poses little risk to your health. Once you drink more than this, alcohol starts affecting your health. And the more you drink, the worse the effect. In this article, we’re going to cover the ABCs of moderate drinking and take a closer look at how it’s perceived in different countries around the world.

What is moderate drinking?

Although the benefits and risks associated with moderate drinking have gained increasing attention in recent years from both researchers and the general public, no universal definition of moderate drinking exists.

Some view moderate drinking as one that has zero negative effects on both the drinkers themselves and people around them. Others argue that moderate drinking is such drinking which stresses all known positive effects of alcohol without bringing about the negative ones.

The bottom line is that every individual first needs to become familiar with different views on moderate drinking and the potential risks and benefits associated with it, then assess their own situation and finally make their own educated decision.

The thing is that everyone responds to alcohol differently. Moreover, defining a “drink” is also difficult because alcoholic beverages can vary widely in their alcohol content, even within the same beverage category (e.g., beer, wine, or distilled spirits). Because international differences in drink definitions also exist, comparing studies from different countries is difficult. In other words, what may seem perfectly within limits in one country may be considered excessive drinking elsewhere in the world.


Definitions of moderate drinking

Government agencies worldwide publish official guidelines on moderate drinking, which, however, vary widely by country. To get a general idea of how different governments view moderate drinking, see the list below.

  • USA: If alcohol is consumed, it should be in moderation—up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men—and only by adults of legal drinking age. If alcohol is consumed, the calories from alcohol should be accounted for so that the limits on calories for other uses and total calories are not exceeded.
  • UK: To keep health risks from alcohol to a low level it is safest not to drink more than 14 units a week on a regular basis. One unit equals to 250ml of a standard 4% beer or 76ml of a standard 13% wine.
  • Australia: No more than 2 standard drinks on any day reduces the lifetime risk of harm; no more than 4 standard drinks on a single occasion reduces the risk of alcohol-related injury arising from that occasion.

How to assess yourself

Since there is a rule to every exception, what you’ve read above is general advice and nothing carved in stone. To make a correct assessment of yourself, you have to take many factors into consideration, including your weight, age, sex, and overall health. The safest way to determine what’s best for you in terms of moderate drinking, get proper advice at drinkaware.co.uk


Click below to read learn about hangover avoidance strategies.

A Great Night and an Even Better Morning: Hangover Avoidance Strategies

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