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Wednesday 21st March 2018

Scots don't know alcohol units

1st August 2008

A survey has shown many Scottish people do not know safe drinking limits or the amount of alcohol contained in drinks.


Most respondents said alcohol "caused more harm north of the border than heroin or tobacco".

However, fewer than 50% were able to accurately gauge the safe drinking limits recommended, according to the Scottish Social Attitudes Survey.

Alcohol is a factor in the admission of 40,000 people to hospital per year in Scotland. Nearly three-quarters (70%) of assaults are connected to alcohol and it costs the country over £2 billion annually.

The Scottish Centre for Social Research spoke to 1,058 people across the country.

89% of female respondents and 80% of male respondents said heavy drinking was "very" or "fairly likely" to negatively impact health over a long period.

However, only around one third (34%) were aware that men should consume a maximum of three-to-four units of alcohol daily and 41% knew the recommended female limits.

Around 50% could correctly identify how many units were in a pint of beer or a single measure of spirits. Less than a fifth (15%) knew how may were in a bottle of wine.

Scottish Public Health Minister Shona Robison said: "The survey results appear to show many people still don't know how many units of alcohol their pint of beer or glass of wine contains - meaning they could well be drinking above recommended limits."


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