AS we head into the party season, it’s likely many of us will be boozing a little bit more.
Whether it’s the work party or a glass of wine to wind down, there is always an excuse to have a drink.
A cheeky pint here or there can all start to add up and this quiz can help you discover your drink risk level and how it compares to the rest of the UK.
First you need to visit the drinkaware website and start the quiz, which will help you find out if you need to schedule ‘drink free’ days.
You’ll be asked your age, sex and postcode.
Experts need to know your gender as the risk of alcohol harm varies on biological sex and the tool calculates different risk thresholds for both men and women.
Next you’ll be asked how often you have an alcoholic drink, whether it’s every week, twice a month or more, once a month or less or never.
You will also be asked what days of the week you drink on and on average, how many drinks you have on each of these days
The next question looks at how often you drink certain amounts of booze, for example a 330ml bottle of beer, a pint of beer or cider, a medium glass of wine or a single measure of a spirit.
Once you’ve answered all of these questions, you will be given a breakdown of your drinking.
For example, you might not think it’s a lot, but having a couple of pints on a Friday and Saturday night could mean that you are given an increased binge drink warning.
The experts at Drinkaware say that this would mean your boozing is putting you at risk, increasing your chances of serious health problems, including cancers, liver and heart disease and high blood pressure.
Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women and alcohol causes one in 13 cases, the experts say.
They added: “The more you drink the greater your risk. Alcohol is also linked to six other types of cancer including mouth and throat, liver and bowel.
“Reducing the amount you drink each week is a great way to start improving your overall health.”
They also state that regular drinking is a common cause of high blood pressure and if left untreated this can lead to mid-life strokes and heart attacks.
How to cut down on alcohol
If you’re worried about your quiz result then there are things you can do to cut down on the booze.
Men and women shouldn’t drink more than 14 units each week – here’s what you can do to keep that number down.
Keep track – Make a note of how many units you have and try and spread this out over the week. Drinkaware has an app which can help you track your booze
Home measures – Don’t guess your measures. Look on the bottles and cans to see how many measures are in each drink. If you’re drinking spirits then try and use a unit measuring cup.
Opt for a small – If you’re a wine drinker then it’s tempting to fill up the glass but some glasses can actually hold a third of a bottle of wine. Buy a small glass and when out always ask for a small.
Drink free – Allocate certain days of the week where you won’t drink.
Have an alternative – There are plenty of low alcohol or no alcohol beers on the market these days. Brands such as Infinite Session, Brewdog and Becks all offer low or no booze options and there are also plenty of non-alcoholic gins doing the rounds this festive season.
At the end of the quiz, you will also be given a breakdown of how many units you get through a week and how many extra calories that means you are consuming.
Drinkware then provides you with a personalised plan which can help you cut down on drinking.
This involves adding activities into your day such as walking or cycling, which can help you feel healthier and fitter all round.
Cutting down on booze is a great option for your health and a recent study found that drinking eight units a week raises the risk of developing dementia, including the most commonly diagnosed Alzheimer’s.
Eight units a week is the equivalent of five glasses of small wine (7.5 units) or just under three pints of high strength beer (9).
It could also be a glass of whisky per evening or eight gin and tonics over the week.
Those that drank the “risky” level of eight units a week had a greater decline in short-term memory over the study period.
This is “likely to progress to dementia”, said Dr Tony Rao, who led the study at King’s College London.
Risky drinkers tended to be male, white British, married, be higher educated, to have depression and have a history of smoking, the study found.
You can visit the DrinkCompare Quiz site to take the test.
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