For most of us, alcohol consumption is an integral part of our social life. But from what quantity can we speak of excess? It can be difficult to assess whether your individual consumption has become unhealthy – and risks damaging your long-term physical and mental health if it has. To help you determine if changes are needed, this article explains the different benchmarks you can use to track and assess your drinking habits. We’ll look at what this means from a physical, psychological and more general perspective, and give you advice on what action to take if it becomes necessary. Let’s start by exploring what constitutes “low-risk” or “reasonable” drinking…

Reasonable consumption Vs risky consumption: We explain to you.

A reasonable amount of alcohol for general health and safety is generally no more than two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women. This recommendation comes from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), which state that this level of alcohol consumption has been associated with a lower risk of health problems such as liver disease, certain cancers and cardiovascular disease. It is important to note, however, that these recommendations are strictly intended to be an upper limit – if you consume less than the recommended amounts, the health benefits will be even greater.

The CDC defines binge drinking as more than four drinks a day or more than 14 drinks a week for men and more than three drinks a day or more than seven drinks a week for women. The effects of excessive alcohol consumption can include:

  • Liver damage.
  • Cognitive disorders.
  • Accidental injuries.
  • An increased risk of certain types of cancer.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Heart failure.
  • Stroke
  • Of depression.
  • Of anxiety.
  • Memory loss or problems related to dementia.

For people under the age of 21 or pregnant women, the consumption of alcohol in any quantity is not recommended due to the potential risks associated with their current physical condition and developing body. Also, if you plan to drive after consuming alcohol, it is important to remember that it is a ticket if your blood alcohol level is between 0.2 g/l and 0.8 g/l.

What are the benchmarks that determine your own consumption?

  1. The number of days you do not drink.

One of the most effective benchmarks for tracking and evaluating your drinking habits is the number of days you abstain from alcohol each week. You can do this by setting a goal of not consuming alcoholic beverages more than two or three days a week, and then making sure that that goal is met regularly.

  1. The total consumption limit.

Another benchmark is to limit the amount of alcohol consumed at one time, as well as the total amount consumed during a given period. By counting how many drinks you have each time and how often you have them, you can get an idea of ​​how much alcohol you drink on a regular basis.

  1. If you are drunk at least once every 15 days.

Also, monitoring your intoxication levels is another important way to track your drinking habits. If you are extremely drunk more than once or twice a month, it is likely that you are drinking too much alcohol and you should consider reducing your intake accordingly. Likewise, if you feel sick or unwell after drinking even moderate amounts, it could indicate a drinking problem.

  1. The type of alcoholic drink defines your consumption.

Another useful benchmark is to take note of the type of drinks you consume. By paying attention to whether drinks contain high levels of sugar or other potentially harmful ingredients, you can determine if it is safe to drink them. In addition, the amount spent on alcohol, whether buying individual drinks from bars or buying bulk alcohol from stores, will also give an indication of the money actually invested in your habit on a weekly or monthly basis.

  1. What does alcohol mean to you?

Finally, it is important to assess the role that alcohol plays in different aspects of your life and determine if it has become too extreme or too frequent to be considered healthy. Take into account situations such as attending social events where only alcohol will be available, isolating yourself from other people who abstain from drinking, spending all your free time looking for s inebriating and neglecting commitments such as family time for evenings with friends are all ways in which excessive alcohol consumption can have a negative impact on a person’s life and on their relationships with those around them. If one (or more) of these behaviors becomes more common, it may mean that you need to change your drinking habits.

How can you limit (or even eliminate) your alcohol consumption?

Limiting alcohol consumption can be a difficult but rewarding undertaking. There are many strategies to reduce or eliminate alcohol consumption.

Step 1: Set goals.

Above all, it is important to set realistic goals and give yourself time to adapt to any changes. If you’re considering cutting back on your alcohol intake, start by setting small goals, such as drinking no more than one alcoholic drink a day for the first week. Then gradually increase until you reach your goal. It can also be beneficial to have an accountability partner, someone you can confide in and check on your progress with regularly.

Step 2: Designate the triggers.

It’s also important to identify triggers for drinking, such as stress, boredom or loneliness. Knowing what drives you to drink can help you plan activities that will help you avoid these circumstances or replace alcohol consumption with healthier habits.

Activities such as going for walks, hobbies like reading or painting, or talking with friends or family members can be effective alternatives to drinking alcohol in some situations. Additionally, replacing sugary drinks with healthier options like water, tea, and natural juices can also help limit alcohol intake while providing refreshment and satisfaction.

Step 3: Make room for healthy eating.

It can help to stock the fridge with healthy foods that make it easier to resist unhealthy cravings like crisps and snacks that can tempt you to drink alcoholic beverages. Ultimately, making healthier food choices will improve overall well-being and reduce the urge to engage in unhealthy habits like binge drinking.

Step 4: Do not hesitate to ask for help.

Finally, one thing not to neglect is to seek professional help if necessary. A mental health specialist can provide advice on how best to manage underlying issues that may be contributing to excessive alcohol use and provide coping tools so that anyone struggling with addiction-related issues to alcohol use can find other means of support during the recovery process.

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the opinion of a health professional.