How much does alcoholism cost Great Britain every year? A lot, I assure you. A recent estimate puts it at about 55 million British Pounds per year. That’s almost $100 billion in US currency!
It is estimated that eight million British adults drink more than what is considered safe by experts, thus raising their chances of suffering conditions such as cancer and stroke.
Middle Class Women, Beware
Many of those at risk are middle class drinkers, who are unaware that regularly drinking wine with their evening meal is damaging their health.
Women are at greater risk if they evenly share a bottle of wine with their partner because their alcohol tolerance is lower than men’s.
Studies have shown that those drinking twice the recommended weekly limits increase their risk of liver disease sevenfold, mouth cancer fivefold and stroke threefold. For women, breast cancer risk doubles.
Any potentially beneficial effects of alcohol, such as reducing the risk of a heart attack, are countered by the risks of other diseases.
One of the great fears is that a significant proportion of the population, a ‘silent majority’, are drinking frequently, at levels which increase their risk of health harm.
There is a low awareness of this population since much of this drinking happens behind closed doors, at home in the evening, or with a meal. These people may not be aware of the damage they are doing to themselves, or even of the quantities they drink. They may be professionals, students, parents – even GPs themselves.
Once again, we all could use a little more alcohol awareness.