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Just Put it on My Tab! How to Drink Responsibly and Still Have Fun

Just Put it on My Tab! How to Drink Responsibly and Still Have Fun

For most people, drinking can be fun. It’s a great way to relax with friends, enjoy drinking games, and generally have a laugh. But when you begin to binge drink and get drunk, you’ve gone too far. You can enjoy yourself with a few drinks when you know how to drink responsibly. Keep reading to find out some great tips that help you drink responsibly.

Are All Drinks Created Equal?

The simple answer to this question is no. The way to measure your alcohol consumption is to educate yourself on how many units of alcohol there are in the different drinks. These are based on the percentage of alcohol found in each beverage.

  • A regular glass of wine has 2.3 units. Wine has 13% Alcohol by Volume.
  • A glass of champagne has 1.5 units. Champagne has 12% Alcohol by Volume.
  • A shot of spirits is considered 1 unit. Spirits have 40% Alcohol by Volume.
  • A pint of beer has 2.3 units. Beer has 4% Alcohol by Volume.
  • A pint of cider has 2.6 units. Cider has 4.5% Alcohol by Volume.

Of course, the Alcohol by Volume (ABV) changes according to the individual drinks. The percentage of alcohol is always listed on the bottle. Keep track of how much you are drinking. Remember that shots go quickly while you can sip a beer or glass of wine for quite some time.

Benefits of Reducing Alcohol Intake

There are a number of benefits to reducing your alcohol intake. The below list shows some of the important benefits.

  • Alcohol is high in calories. Reducing the amount of alcohol you consume can help you manage your weight.
  • While alcohol helps you relax and maybe even fall asleep, it messes up your sleep cycle. Thus, reducing alcohol consumption reduces sleep deprivation.
  • Alcohol may make you feel good initially but it is actually a depressant, with the potential of making you feel anxious and depressed in the long run.
  • If you drink too much consistently over time, it can affect your physical health. People who regularly drink large amounts of alcohol are prone to developing liver disease, pancreatitis, it can increase one’s predisposition to diabetes, and may cause some types of cancer. For long term health benefits, it’s easy to understand the importance of cutting down on alcohol consumption.

Tips to Drink Responsibly

Drinking responsibly is something even beer companies promote, because its importance cannot ever be underestimated or ignored. Here are a few tips to help you drink responsibly.

Get to know the amount of alcohol you can tolerate

Keep track of the number of drinks you’re having. There are recommendations on daily and weekly alcohol intake. While countries or medical authorities differ slightly on the actual amounts, a fairly common guideline is between 10 to 14 units of alcohol or standard drinks in a week with no more than four units in a single day. The actual amount of alcohol someone can tolerate differs according to one’s weight, age, gender, and overall health.

Don’t drink on an empty stomach

Since alcohol enters your blood stream through the stomach and small intestine, drinking on an empty stomach means the alcohol will move into your bloodstream much faster.

Stay hydrated when you drink

Drink plenty of water and do not use alcohol to quench your thirst. Drink alcohol-free drinks in between the alcoholic drinks in order to give your body time to process the alcohol. Fun fact: it takes about one hour for the body to process an alcoholic drink.

Avoid drinking games

Find other forms of entertainment such as dancing or playing pool. Unfortunately drinking games tend to turn into an activity where drinking can become uncontrollable.

Designated driver

Never drink and drive. Not only are you risking your life but those who may be driving near you. Get home by taxi, public transport, or a designated driver who does not drink at all.

Don’t mix alcohol with…

Medicine. Sure, this one might be a given, but it’s easy to have a drink or two and forget you’re on some form of medication. That’s why it’s of utmost importance to think before you drink. Mixing alcohol with medications can be quite dangerous, life threatening, even. If you are taking medicine, simply avoid drinking in general. And of course, this applies to mixing alcohol with recreational drugs.

Moderation Reduces Addictions

While doing things in moderation means you can continue enjoying yourself without causing yourself damage in the short or the long term. For those with addictive personalities, or a history of addiction, sometimes more extreme measures are necessary. For the average Joe or Josephine, setting limits is a great way to look after yourself.

As it is with many things in life, moderation is key. This rings true to quite a number of leisurely activities. Indeed, drinking responsibly can also be likened to gambling responsibly, because there’s always a fine line between having fun and allowing your entertaining pastime to turn into an addictive habit

Concluding Thoughts

There’s no denying that drinking is fun – when done responsibly and mindfully, of course. That’s why it’s important to understand when it’s time to call it day or (if you feel you overdid it), call a sober friend to drive you home safely.  After all, you want to be aware of your surroundings and enjoy the company you’re in. Once that’s out of the window and you lose control of your inhibitions, you know that you’ve failed to drink like a responsible, mature adult. And that’s when you know it’s time to rethink your drinking habits.