One of the easiest and most popular ways to reduce the amount of alcohol you drink is to try having alcohol-free days. Seems simple right?
Whether you drink daily or little and often the units can rapidly add up. To prevent health risks related to alcohol you should try not drink more than 14 units of alcohol per week.
Reducing your alcohol intake can help reduce your risk of a stroke, heart disease, diabetes and several types of cancer.
Pall Mall GP, Dr. Tang said: “If you consume alcohol on a daily basis, you will undoubtedly be putting stress on your liver. Liver disease becomes more of a risk when you regularly exceed the recommended daily units. So much so that over the last decade there has been a 25% increase in deaths caused by liver disease in the UK alone.”
There isn’t a set number of alcohol-free days that you should have per week, although we’d recommend between three and five. However, it’s important to consider what’s achievable for you to effectively reduce your drinking.
Speaking about the benefits of alcohol-free days, Dr. Tang said: “Alcohol-free days provide many benefits. Some short-term health benefits you may notice when you have alcohol free days including a better night’s sleep, feeling less stressed or anxious, better skin and help with weight control.
“One of the best ways to prepare for your alcohol-free days is to plan. You may have trigger points where you would usually have a glass of wine or a beer for example after you finish work to help you switch off. Instead try buying different non-alcoholic drinks that may help as a substitute or alternatively, use the time you’d spend having a drink after work on your favourite hobby instead to keep yourself occupied.”
Not only does cutting back on your alcohol intake improve your health, but it also helps you lose weight, boost your energy and saves you money. It’s a no brainer!
To summarise Dr. Tang said: “If you are struggling getting started with your alcohol-free days why not try substituting to a low alcohol beverage in the first instance? If you try to make drastic changes too quickly this can often lead to an overload in a short period of time after which isn’t what we’d want to see happen!”
If you are struggling with your alcohol use and want to speak with one of our GPs you can book an express appointment for just £75 by calling 0161 394 0319 or by enquiring on our website.