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What Is A Unit Of Alcohol?

To make it easier to keep track of the amount of alcohol consumed, alcohol intake can be measured in units. Each unit of alcohol is roughly equal to 8 grams of alcohol. The following drinks contain one unit of alcohol:

1 Measure Of Spirits

Spirits like whisky, brandy, gin and vodka contain 30% to 40% alcohol.

1 Glass Of Wine

Wine contains about 10% alcohol. Port wine and sherry contain more alcohol, so a smaller glass is equivalent to 1 unit.

1 Glass Of Beer

Beer contains about 3.5% alcohol but light beers and extra strength beers contain different amounts.

The table below shows the blood alcohol level when different amounts of alcohol are taken. The column on the right shows the possible effects on behavior. However, different people may react differently to the same, given amount of alcohol.

Alcohol Intake Blood Alcohol Level Effects
2 measures of whisky 2 glasses of beer 30 mg/100 ml Judgment impaired; risk of accident increases.
3 glasses of wine 3 glasses of beer 50 mg/100 ml Cheerfulness, loss of inhibition.
7 glasses of beer 7 measures of gin 110 mg/100 ml Exuberance: slurring of speech.
12 glasses of beer 12 glasses of wine 200 mg/100 ml Double vision: inability to walk properly.
3/4 bottle of spirits 400 mg/100 ml Deep sleep or coma.
1 bottle of spirits 550 mg/100 ml Death may occur.

If You Think You Have A Drinking Problem. Here Are Some Helpful Tips

  • Don't "drown your sorrows in alcohol". There are other ways of dealing with your problems.
  • Don't give in to peer pressure. Say no when someone offers to buy you a drink.
  • If you are easily tempted, avoid places where alcohol is easily available, for example, discos and pubs.
  • If you must drink at every meal or have cocktails before dinner, try non=alcoholic drinks instead.
  • Think of the lives that are in danger every time you drink after drinking too much - not only your own, but those of innocent motorists and pedestrians.
  • Every time you resist the temptation to drink, reward yourself e.g. buy something you like with the money you save.
  • Be brave enough to admit it. The first step to a cure is admitting that you have a drinking problem.

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