Drinking is as much a part of western culture as many foods and customs. Alcohol cannot be set aside as something which we do not do, despite the known health implications of drinking.
As with all things, moderation is the key.
But what do you do if you consider yourself a healthy individual? What if you exercise well, eat well and also want to consume alcohol?
The question becomes when is enough enough? When does an acceptable amount of alcohol become deleterious to one’s health regime?
The answer may seem cut and dried but the truth is probably going to be different for different people.
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Alcohol And Health
Most people have by now hard of the apparent link between moderate red wine consumption and heart health.
However, caution must be exercised here, as most of the available research does make a very definite link between drinking and adverse health effects.
In the red wine studies, the amounts drunk were very small, and this is not how most people consume alcohol.
You should assume that alcohol is bad for your health.
Like most toxins, there is no safe lower limit and any consumption is a trade off between the supposed benefits of alcohol and the harm that it does.
How Much Is Too Much
In The UK, men and women are advised to drink no more than 14 units in a week. This would be about 6 pints of average strength beer or 10 small glasses of wine.
Bear in mind however, that this is the maximum recommended amount, not a target that you should aim to reach.
Regularly drinking to these limits will have a deleterious effect on your health.
If you are training then you will notice a drop in performance if you regularly drink this much.
Best advice would be to drink much less than this, and to leave as long a gap in between drinking days as is possible.
The truth is that drinking is not really compatible with health training.
Many years ago, alcohol free versions of beer and wines were commonly eschewed in favour of the alcoholic versions because they just didn’t taste as good.
Things have changed now and today, alcohol free beers are on offer that have a very similar flavour profile as the real thing.
If you enjoy drinking beer, then at least you can drink an alternative that has a similar taste.
Try replacing just one of your drinking days with an alcohol free version and see how you get on.