In most countries, alcohol consumption is accepted. Most people that drink do so moderately and within the guidelines set by the Government. However, many people regularly drink more than the recommended daily amount and suffer as a result. For some, moderate drinking can develop into problem drinking, which in turn can lead to alcoholism.
A problem drinker is one who experiences difficulty in their life because of the amount of alcohol he or she consumes. Some individuals cannot function each day without alcohol, but because of the stigma associated with excessive drinking and alcoholism, they will hide their problems from others until it is evident that a serious problem exists.
Binge drinking can also be a problem, with many young people drinking large quantities of alcohol over a short space of time. This can lead to health problems and, for some, can develop into problem drinking.
Moderate drinkers will typically stick to the official guidelines, which recommend that women should consume no more than twenty-one units of alcohol per week while men should not drink more than twenty-eight.
Should Guidelines Be Changed?
The current official drinking guidelines in the UK have been in place since 1995, but it has been revealed that the Chief Medical Officer is to review these guidelines. The Department of Health is expected to publish new guidelines later in the year, with many expecting the recommended limits to be reduced.
Numerous health experts and charities are concerned about the growing evidence suggesting links between health problems and even moderate drinking. The director of the Institute of Alcohol Studies, Katherine Brown, said that the UK is likely to cut the limit and follow the lead of countries such as Australia and Canada. She even hinted that the Government may recommend that people stop drinking altogether and said, “The World Health Organisation advises there is no safe level of drinking for cancer prevention, so we would expect our guidelines to include this information so that consumers are able to make informed decisions about their drinking.”
Consultant gastroenterologist Dr Kieran Moriarty, from the British Society for Gastroenterology, said recent findings from a study involving a drinking experiment with twins were significant. The study showed one twin drinking the recommended weekly limit spread out for each day of the week while the other twin drank the full limit in one day of the week.
The study showed that both men suffered signs of organ inflammation and ill health and not just the twin who was binge drinking, as was expected. Dr Moriarty said, “One unit a day or less than one unit a day is associated with an increased risk, and the cancer that is seen as the most sensitive is breast cancer.”
He also said that there was a link between alcohol consumption and other cancers and that there is no safe level of alcohol. He believes that the recommended limits will be reduced.
As the studies show, alcohol can cause internal problems no matter how much is consumed. Nevertheless, those who drink excessive amounts of alcohol are likely to suffer a number of health conditions including high blood pressure, stroke, pancreatitis, liver disease, cancer, depression, paranoia, and dementia.
Help for Alcohol Addiction
Alcohol addiction affects many people in the UK, but help is available. There are numerous treatment providers all over the country, and Addiction Helper can help you to access a suitable one based on your needs and circumstances. Contact us today for information and advice on the treatments available, and how to access these.
Participate in addiction discussion events to show your support or position.
Source: The Drinks Business