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The dangers of falling into old habits after 'Dry January'

The dangers of falling into old habits after 'Dry January'

Published at 10:04am 31st January 2019.

Dry January is coming to an end and for those who have been taking part, that first sip of alcohol is just hours away. But what are the dangers of slipping back into old habits?

The alcohol-free month is a popular choice for people who want to reduce their intake after what can be a heavy Christmas schedule.

But often those who have taken part in Dry January will slip back into old habits when February arrives, something that can cause potentially life-limiting health issues.  

The alcohol education charity Drinkaware is launching their 'Drink Free Days are not just for January' campaign, urging people to cut down on alcohol beyond Dry January.

Wine glass and bottle
Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to several potentially life-limiting health conditions

How much is too much?

The UK's Chief Medical Officer suggests that both men and women should consume no more than 14 units per week.

Evidence from Drinkaware Monitor 2018 revealed that although men are more likely than women to be drinking over the recommended guidelines, they are less likely to be doing so using moderation techniques.

The health risks remain the same when it comes to alcohol consumption, with regular drinking leading to high blood pressure, liver and heart disease, as well as seven types of cancer.

Actress Sherrie Hewson, who is taking more drink free days in her role as an ambassador for Drinkaware, told Stray FM:

"People tend to think you're being boring if you don't have a drink. 

"I told myself to do drink free days rather than stop drinking, but when I do stop and go back to drinking, I ask myself 'do I need to do this now?' because actually, I'm enjoying the fact that I'm not drinking."

Group of girls with shots
Societal pressures may force some people to drink when they don't want to

Drink Free Days

Drinkaware's 'Drink Free Days are not just for January' campaign is aimed at highlighting the importance of regular days away from alcohol and to encourage those who have taken part in Dry January to avoid reverting back to old drinking habits.

The risks of excessive alcohol can be reduced through moderation techniques, and Drink Free Days could have a lasting impact on your health.


Listen to Ben Groom from Stray FM's Food and Drink show speaking to Sherrie Hewson and Dr Sarah Jarvis MBE about the importance of moderation when drinking alcohol.

More food and drink stories from Harrogate, Craven and Wharfedale.