Coronavirus: stay safe with our facts, information and practical advice about alcohol and your health

As I write this, many of you will have decided to kick-start a healthier 2020. Aside from the feeling of a fresh beginning, a new year – and in this case, a new decade – can give us a chance to recover from December and reset our bodies. After all, December can be an indulgent month.

You might have decided to cut back on, or cut out, alcohol this year. You might be taking part in Dry January, you might be pledging to take more Drink Free Days (we recommend at least three a week), or you might be giving up alcohol altogether.

Let me say ‘well done’ if you have made any of these decisions.

Reducing the amount of alcohol you drink can have so many benefits to your health. Not only can it reduce your risk of serious illnesses such as seven types of cancer and liver disease, but reducing how much you drink can improve your quality of sleep, have positive effects on your skin – and even help you lose weight.

And Drinkaware is here to support you very step of the way. Let me tell you about three things right now that we think will help you as you start a low, or alcohol-free, new year:

  1. Drinkaware’s self-assessment quiz – do you know how much you drink? We have devised a questionnaire that will help you calculate how much you drink, how this could be having an impact on your health and how you compare to other drinkers in the UK. Why not try it?
  2. Drinkaware app – tracking your drinking is one of the best ways to help you stick to your goals and our app let’s you do just that. You can tell it what you drink, when, and even set goals. Download it today.
  3. Drinkaware’s Unit and Calorie Calculator – if you’re trying to make a change to your drinking habits, knowing exactly how many units and calories are in alcoholic drinks can help you prepare.

Now you have the tools, here are my top two tips to help you reduce the amount of alcohol you drink in 2020:

  1. Go low or no. You might be surprised by how much the market for lower strength and alcohol-free drinks has grown. There are lots of tasty options available both on supermarket shelves and behind bars. And you won’t be alone. About two thirds of drinkers in the UK feel positively about lower strength drinks and just under half feel positively about alcohol-free drinks.
  2. Pledge more Drink Free Days. People tell us one of the easiest ways they’ve found to reduce the amount of alcohol they drink is to include more Drink Free Days into their weeks. In fact, the Chief Medical Officers advise that if you choose to drink, and you stay within the recommended guidelines of 14 units per week, that you include several Drink Free Days.

Our own New Year resolution at Drinkaware is to continue to reduce alcohol harm and reach more people to support them on their journey to drink less. We have lots of plans to offer even more support to drinkers in the UK, so you’ll be hearing a lot from us this year.

For now, and on behalf of the whole team here at Drinkaware, I wish you a very happy and successful 2020.

Elaine Hindal Chief Executive

Elaine joined Drinkaware in 2013 from The Children’s Society, where she was Director of External Relations. Prior to that, Elaine held a number of global marketing roles with Nokia, Cadbury Schweppes PLC where she was Commercial Strategy Director for EMEA and Global Category Director, Chocolate; and The Coca–Cola Company, where Elaine was Global Brand Director. Prior marketing and communications experience was with Beiersdorf AG and Boots. Elaine is a Trustee of the Royal Mencap Society, where she advises on brand and communications strategy.

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