Welcome to Healthy Dudley. This is the new public health website.

Alcohol and Health

Alcohol Guidelines

It’s recommended to drink no more than 14 units of alcohol a week, spread across 3 days or more. That’s around 6 medium (175ml) glasses of wine, or 6 pints of 4% beer.

There’s no completely safe level of drinking, but sticking within these guidelines lowers your risk of harming your health.

Try using Alcohol Change UK’s unit calculator to work out how many units you drink and watch our video guide to alcohol units.

Alcohol and Pregnancy 

If you’re pregnant or think you could become pregnant, the safest approach is not to drink alcohol at all to keep risks to your baby to a minimum.  The NHS has more information and advice for mothers-to-be who have questions about alcohol during pregnancy

What is a unit of alcohol? visual of how many units there are in various drinks. Below is a graphic of the alcohol drinking guidelines for men, women and advice not to drink any alcohol when pregnant.

Effects of Alcohol 

By following the Alcohol guidelines, 14 units per week, you reduce your risk of alcohol related disease. Even drinking at or below the guidelines puts you at a 1 in 100 risk of developing an alcohol related disease such as;

  • cancers of the mouth, throat and breast
  • stroke
  • heart disease
  • liver disease
  • brain damage
  • damage to the nervous system

The effects of alcohol on your health will depend on how much you drink. The less you drink, the lower the health risks. For more information visit NHS Choices

Good reasons to drink less

Once you start cutting back you’ll notice the benefits including:

  • More energy – by reducing the amount you drink, you may find you have more energy and feel less tired during the day.
  • Enjoying a good night’s sleep – drinking can affect your sleep and stop you from sleeping deeply, it can make it difficult to fall asleep and you may find you wake early.
  • Better skin – alcohol dehydrates your skin, and can make it appear dull. Skin can quickly react to changes and should be looking better after a few days of drinking less.
  • Alcohol is fattening – All those hidden calories in your drinks can make you become overweight. Just one pint contains nearly 1,500 calories!
  • More cash – The cost of drinking alcohol can quickly add up. Think how much money you could save by making small changes and cutting down.
  • Better long-term health –  including reducing your risk of developing cancer, liver or heart disease. By sticking to the government’s low risk guidelines you’ll be doing your body a big favour.

Try the Drink Free Days app it’s a simple and easy way to track the days you drink alcohol and the days you don’t.