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Date: 12 June 2021

Time: 12:54

Alcohol

There is evidence that a small amount of alcohol is beneficial for your health, and it can be enjoyed as part of a healthy, balanced diet as long as there are no issues with alcohol dependence. 

Drinking more than the recommended amount of alcohol regularly can be detrimental to health. You can be more at risk of developing high blood pressure, liver problems, fertility problems, heart disease and various cancers, particularly throat cancer and stomach cancer. Alcohol is high in calories and contains no vitamins or minerals. Cutting back on alcoholic drinks is a good way of cutting down on the calories, particularly if you would like to lose weight.

The Government has made recommendations on the amount of alcohol that can be safely consumed:

Men 3 – 4 units per day
Women 2 – 3 units per day

You should also try to aim for at least two alcohol-free days per week. The following table is a guide to what equates to one unit of alcohol and the amount of calories contained in alcoholic drinks.

DrinkUnitsCaloriesFood equivalent
175ml glass of wine 2 126 One crumpet
Pint of beer (5% ABV) 3 170 One packet of crisps
Standard bottle of “alcopop” 1.5 237 One small (45g) bar of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk chocolate
Single (25 ml) vodka and one 330ml can of cola 1 194 One glazed ring doughnut
440ml Can of lager (4.5% ABV) 2 247 One Snickers bar

For more information on alcoholic drinks, the amount of units they contain and the dangers of excessive drinking, please see the NHS Choices website.

Support is available for people who habitually drink to excess. Alcoholics Anonymous and Aquarius are two well know and successful support groups that can provide people with support, advice and reassurance. Aquarius has various bases around the West Midlands.

Alcoholics Anonymous: 0845 769 7555 or 0121 212 0111
Aquarius: 0121 685 6340 or 0121 414 0888

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