I’m half way through my Spring Detox and the hardest things for me to give up are sugar and alcohol. Before detoxing I aimed at having alcohol free days during the week and only had wine, cider or champagne on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I said aiming as it didn’t always happen. And I worked out that it’s safe for me to have only two glasses because if I had three or more I didn’t feel 100% the next morning and I also didn’t sleep well. Last night I wanted to have a glass of wine but resisted and instead I poured my Raspberry Kombucha into a wine glass and that was fine. I have listened to a podcast on cravings and addictions and statistics around alcohol consumption are pretty alarming…

82% of Australian adults drink alcohol with almost half of the population consuming three or more standard drinks in one sitting. 18% drinkers consume six or more standard drinks in one setting. Foundation of alcohol research Annual alcohol poll 2018.

Global burden of disease study was published in August 2018 using 694 data sources of individual and population-level alcohol consumption, along with 592 prospective and retrospective studies on the risk of alcohol use and found that alcohol use accounts for nearly 10% global deaths among populations aged 15-49 years and is the leading risk factor for death or disability in this age category. For women over fifty, 27% of all alcohol related deaths were from cancers.  Alcohol use and burden for 195 countries and territories, 1990–2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016 DOI :https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)31310-2

Here is a short description of Standard Drinks from State Library of New South Wales on Drug Info.

Standard drinks

A ‘standard drink’ is the measure of alcohol used to work out safe drinking levels.

A standard drink in Australia contains 10g of alcohol. This is always the same, no matter what type of alcoholic beverage or how it is served. As some drinks are stronger than others (for example, low-strength beer is around 2.7% whereas spirits are typically 40%), the higher the alcohol concentration of a drink, the less liquid it contains.

A serving of alcohol in a pub or club can often be larger than a ‘standard’ drink, for example a standard glass of wine is 100ml but a typical serve may be 150ml.

In Australia, all bottles, cans and casks containing alcoholic beverages are required by law to state on the label the approximate number of standard drinks they contain.

One Australian standard drink is equal to approximately:

  • 285 mL of full strength beer (4.8% alc. vol)
  • 375mL of mid strength beer (3.5% alc.vol)
  • 425 mL of low strength beer (2.7% alc. vol)
  • 100 mL of wine (red – 13% alc. vol, and white – 11.5% alc. vol)
  • 100 mL of champagne (12% alc. vol)
  • 30 mL of spirits (40% alc. vol)
  • 275 mL bottle of ready-to-drink beverage (5% alcohol content)

Glasses, bottles and cans of alcohol contain varying amounts of alcohol and can contain more or less than one standard drink.