Rise in women swapping food for booze

Leading researchers have warned that increasing numbers of women are cutting back on food to drink wine – a problem that has been termed ‘drinkorexia’.

Labels that detail the calories in bottles of alcoholic drinks are encouraging people with eating disorders to swap food for drink, psychologists say.

People who are obsessed with ‘calorie counting’ will often choose not to eat in order to drink alcohol, effectively ‘swapping’ their food calories for drink.  The disorder means that more people are drinking on an empty stomach, maximising the effects of the alcohol.

Generally, there is a misconception that by reducing the number of food calories during the day, weight gain will balance out when a person binge drinks later. Also, those who wish to become intoxicated quickly avoid food in order to allow for more rapid absorption of alcohol from the digestive system.

Finally, individuals think that alcohol will provide them with calories to replace the ones they avoided earlier in the day. However, alcohol has no nutritional value, and the individuals are consuming what are considered ’empty calories.’