Alcohol Awareness

Employees told to slash their drinking in huge shake-up of alcohol guidelines

Happy New Year to all of you and at HP Towers, we’d like to wish all of our clients and readers a healthy and prosperous 2016!

Our first news story of 2016 relates to alcohol awareness for employees as many of us return to work following a period of over-indulgence.  On New Year’s Day, the UK’s Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies reported new advice on how much people in the UK should limit their drinking.

Updated guidelines on drinking in pregnancy and for young people were published in 2007 and 2009 respectively, but the last review of alcohol advice as a whole was done way back in 1995. Currently, women are advised to drink no more than 2-3 units a day and men no more than 3-4.

Recent newspaper reports suggest that the review will stress there is no “safe” alcohol intake and even drinking small amounts could cause diseases such as cancer.  The reports also suggest that Dame Sally Davies will recommend abstaining from alcohol for at least two days a week.

Liver disease deaths have risen fourfold in Britain since the 1970’s to 16,000 a year. Many victims would not have been classed as alcoholics but drank little and often for decades.

What are the current guidelines?

One unit amounts to roughly:

  • Half a 175ml glass of wine
  • Half a pint of beer
  • One measure of spirits

How much should your employees drink:

  • Men should not exceed 3 to 4 units per day or, 21 units a week
  • Women should have no more than 2 to 3 units a day, or 14 units a week

Did you know?

  • Half a bottle of wine contains 5 units; that is nearly double the daily limit for women
  • A strong pint of ale contains more than 3 units, while a strong pint of cider contains 5 units
  • One cocktail on its own can contain as much as 5 units
  • Alcopops generally contain 1.5 units
  • Pregnant women are advised to avoid alcohol if they can but, if they must drink not to have more than 2 units, twice a week

Finally, the workplace can be an important and effective place to address alcoholism and other drug issues by establishing or promoting programs focused on improving health.  For more details on how Healthy Performance can assist your organisation with alcohol awareness for employees please call one of the team on 01295 230120.