Alcohol – How much are you drinking?

Most of us like a drink and at Dr we don’t want try to tell people what they should and shouldn’t do. We’re all grown-ups so we simply try to give people the relevant information to enable them to make their own choices.

What is alcohol? 

Alcohol or ethanol is a chemical produced by the natural fermentation of sugars; in its pure form it is classed as a hazardous flammable liquid. Alcohol also belongs to a class of drugs known as ‘depressants’ which means too much of it can cause a slowdown of physical and mental functions, and like any drug it is addictive.

Alcohol is a toxin which means drinking too much in one go can cause acute poisoning; a hangover is your bodies way of letting you know it’s been poisoned because alcohol has been consumed much quicker than the liver can get rid of it. In extreme circumstances this can lead to brain damage and even death. Less extreme but long term alcohol consumption may lead to heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, and even cancer.

It’s not surprising; as an example, if a person drinks two medium glasses of 12% wine each night, within eight months their bodies will have consumed a bucketful of pure alcohol, that can’t be good!

What is too much? 

Different people have different tolerances to alcohol, and men tend to have a higher tolerance than women but as a rule of thumb one glass of wine, or one pint of beer would be considered a safe amount. If you’re drinking more than that it may be a good time to think about some lifestyle changes.