Your weekly drinking results

A few changes could make a difference to you

A few changes could make a difference to you

86%

You drink MORE than 86% of 16-24 year olds

This week you've drank the equivalent of 6 doughnuts (not counting any other snacks or mixers!)
16
To burn off the calories that you've drank this week, you'd need to walk for 16 miles
How drinking less could benefit you

Drinking less gives you more energy.

Drinking too much can make you feel tired, sluggish and generally a bit under the weather. Drink less and it shouldn't take too long before you notice that you have more energy.

Drinking less can help you sleep.

Regular drinking can affect the quality of your sleep, making you feel tired and sluggish. When you drink alcohol before bed you may fall into a deep sleep quicker, but as the night goes on you spend more time in the less restful Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage of sleep. This can leave you feeling tired the next day, not matter how long you stay in bed. To help you sleep better, stop drinking earlier before bedtime. This will give your body time to process the alcohol you've drunk. On average it takes two hours to process a glass of wine or pint of beer. For more advice to help you sleep visit www.nhs.uk/livewell/sleep/pages/sleep-home.aspx

Drinking less can lift your mood.

Some people drink when they're feeling down, but this usually only makes them feel worse. Initially alcohol may make you feel more energetic or cheerful, but then - because alcohol is a depressant - you could end up feeling worse. For other ways to lift your mood visit www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/

Click here to see more benefits of drinking less
Your top tips

Now we know more about how you drink, we'd like to suggest some simple tips that you could try using to drink less. You don't need to do them all. Pick what works best for you and your life.

Red wine does more harm than good.

Although media stories that red wine is good for you are very popular, the catchy headlines can be misleading. Many of the studies quoted in these stories have limitations or flaws that cast doubt on their findings. Alcohol should not be promoted as a way to improve health. There is no safe drinking level, and regularly drinking too much increases your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, liver disease and some cancers. The way to enjoy a longer healthier life is to drink less alcohol, eat a healthier diet, exercise more, and quit smoking.

Dilute your drinks.

A popular way to drink less is to have a wine spritzer using soda water or a shandy instead of a pint (a shandy is beer or lager diluted with lemonade, make sure to ask for low-sugar lemonade). This will not only help you cut back on how much you are drinking, but your calories too! If you aren't keen on diluting your drink then try to reduce the number of drinks you are having on each occasion instead.

Drinking to boost your confidence can backfire.

Alcohol suppresses the parts of the brain which control inhibition, so a drink or two may make you feel more socially confident when out socialising. But these pleasant effects wear off fast and as you drink more, more parts of the brain are affected. Alcohol may also make you angry or aggressive or can make you feel more anxious or down. You may do or say things that you wouldn't when you're sober, and which you regret the next day.

If you would like information about how to build your confidence and help you relax in social situations, without the need to drink, there is a wide range of useful resources on NHS Choices. See: http://www.nhs.uk/livewell/mentalhealth/Pages/Mentalhealthhome.aspx

Drop a drink size.

A really easy trick to drink a little less without feeling like you are missing out is to go for smaller sizes. Try bottled beer instead of pints, or a small glass of wine instead of a large one.

Keep wine for longer.

Why not save some wine until tomorrow? Most wine keeps for a couple of days if you use a bottle stop.

Steer clear of rounds.

Think of a good reason for avoiding rounds, and let your friends know before you start drinking. For example - you're losing weight, you're saving up, or you have something important to do in the morning. Another popular idea is only taking a limited amount of money (and no bank cards) out with you. If you don't want to drink at all, you could offer to be the designated driver. This will help you stay in control of how much you're drinking.

Fact or fiction

Is red wine really healthy?
Are beer and wine safer to drink than spirits?

Find out the truth here
Health effects
of alcohol

Alcohol can affect your physical and mental health

Find out more here
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