“Mommy juice,” “wine-o’clock,” “happy hour” … there’s no shortage of cute euphemisms for drinking alcoholic beverages. But exceeding the guidelines for moderate consumption (up to one 5 oz. glass of wine, 12 oz. beer, or 1.5 oz. of spirits for women, two for men per day) is on the rise—and the health consequences are anything but cute. Women, whose rates of overall drinking and high-risk drinking have risen significantly in recent years, may be especially vulnerable to alcohol’s health harms, including liver disease, cancer, heart disease, and memory loss. Get a handle on your drinking, and cut down if you need to, with these tips: Keep track.
A glass of wine here, a beer or two there… it’s easy to lose count. Spend a couple weeks writing down your daily intake of alcoholic beverages. Watch your pour, and sip slowly.
If you’re not sure about serving sizes, measure it out. Using a smaller glass or simply pouring a smaller portion may help you cut down. Drink slowly, and keep a glass of water or seltzer on hand to sip from, too.Eat when you drink.
Drinking on an empty stomach amplifies the effects of alcohol. Be sure to have a snack or meal with your drink. Find other ways to deal with stress.
Instead of relying on alcohol to calm down or cheer up, start a practice like yoga or meditation. If you typically drink wine at night to wind down, find another relaxing activity, like taking a leisurely walk or curling up with a book. Know your triggers.
If you associate drinking with certain situations, events, or people, create an alternative plan. Reach out to a health professional.
If you need help cutting down, talk with your doctor, a therapist, or another health professional.
Source: Remarkable Increases in Alcohol Use Disorders