THink before you drink

25/01/11, TSPL, Scotsman, Evening News, Alcohol awareness feature,.Drinksmarter.org, Generic pictures of model measuring the units of alcohol that we drink. Picture Ian Rutherford
25/01/11, TSPL, Scotsman, Evening News, Alcohol awareness feature,.Drinksmarter.org, Generic pictures of model measuring the units of alcohol that we drink. Picture Ian Rutherford

SCOTTISH women, aged 30-50 are being encouraged to think about how much alcohol they’re drinking and take simple steps to cut-back.

Latest figures show that around 38 per cent of women regularly exceed sensible drinking guidelines, by drinking more than two to three units a day or 14 units a week.

As well as headaches and restless nights, over time, the invisible effects of alcohol can catch up with us, often accelerating the ageing process and even increasing the risks of high blood pressure, liver disease and breast cancer.

You can witness the effects of regularly drinking too much by downloading the ‘Drinking Mirror’ smartphone app. The app is available exclusively from the Scottish Government, free until the end of March and shows users that cutting down by a glass size can have a significant effect on the ageing process.

So far the app has been downloaded by 364,275 people worldwide – so why not take advantage of this hi-tech helper? It could be the key to helping you make changes that are long overdue - and could have a genuine impact longterm.

The good news is that by making some simple adjustments to our drinking habits – such as dropping a glass size – it’s easy to make a noticable difference. Taking simple steps such as pouring a small glass of wine, as opposed to a standard measure, alternating alcohol with soft drinks and taking at least two alcohol-free days a week could,in fact, be lifechanging.