A recent report has recommended a review of government guidelines on alcohol in the UK.
The report, by the Commons science and technology committee, argues that people should have at least two days free from drinking alcohol every week.
Men are advised not to drink more than 3 to 4 units a day, and women no more than 2 to 3
Women are currently advised to drink no more than 14 units a week, and men no more than 21 units a week. This advice was introduced in 1987.
In 1995, the government introduced a new recommendation on daily alcohol intake. Men were advised not to drink more than 3 to 4 units a day, and women no more than 2 to 3.
However, the latest report questions whether this advice appears to ‘endorse daily drinking’.
The report says that having 2 alcohol free days a week would enforce the message that drinking every day should be avoided. It also states more work is needed to help people understand the concept of alcohol units.
A recent survey by the Office for National Statistics revealed that whilst 90 per cent of people had heard of units, fewer than one in three new how much one unit of wine was, and only 13 per cent kept a check on the units they drank.
The chairman of the committee, Andrew Miller, said: "Alcohol guidelines are a crucial tool for government in its effort to combat excessive and problematic drinking. It is vital that they are up-to date and that people know how to use them."
"Unfortunately, public understanding of how to use the guidelines and what an alcohol unit looks like is poor, although improving."
Recent figures showed that the number of hospital admissions caused by drinking have more than doubled since the year 2002, raising fears about an alcohol epidemic in the UK.
Local Alcohol Profiles for England show that 1,173,386 people in England were admitted to casualty for injuries or illnesses caused by drinking in 2010/11, compared to just 510,780 in 2002/3.
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