New Alcohol Drinking Guide Stresses Moderation

Canada’s new alcohol drinking recommendations aim to help guide people in how much to consume and they encourage moderation.

The new guidelines from the National Alcohol Strategy Advisory Committee were released Friday.

To reduce long-term health risks, no more than two drinks a day, five times a week or 10 drinks total a week for women are recommended and no more than three drinks a day, five times a week or 15 drinks total a week are recommended for men.

They also recommend including days free of alcohol.

Federal, provincial and territorial health ministers discussed the new guidelines at a recent meeting and said they will promote their use within their jurisdictions.

“Canada’s National Alcohol Strategy underscores the need to develop a culture of moderation,” Michel Perron, co-chair of the advisory committee and CEO of the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse, said in a statement.

Toronto’s Centre for Addiction and Mental Health guidelines for “low-risk” consumption were set in 1997 at nine drinks per week for women and 14 per week for men.

In the new guidelines, “a drink” means:

  • 341 ml (12 oz.) bottle of 5% alcohol beer, cider or cooler.
  • 142 ml (5 oz.) glass of 12% alcohol wine.
  • 43 ml (1.5 oz.) serving of 40% distilled alcohol (rye, gin, rum, etc.)

Until now, there were no national guidelines.

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