Letter: Why the measures were topped up
Monday 18 December 1995
Sir: We now know that the Government believes that it is safe for us to drink slightly more each day than it has been telling us for the last eight years, and that most doctors disapprove of the change ("Advice is out of step with medical opinion;" "We don't need one more drink," 13 December). Now we know why they dislike it. In his letter of 15 December, Professor Prichard of the Institute of Alcohol Studies - the educational arm of the United Kingdom Temperance Alliance - claims that "There is much evidence to suggest that alcohol problems in society rise in proportion to the overall level of consumption". Well, if you believe that, you probably also believe you can reduce the damage done by alcohol by persuading people to drink less on average - by keeping their consumption below a notional "safe limit". That is what doctors believe, and that is why they set the "safe limits" at such a ludicrously low level that the Government has been embarrassed by all the research about the link between moderate alcohol consumption and a reduced risk of heart disease into changing them. Yet it has never been proved that a direct link exists between the number of alcohol-related problems and the average level of alcohol consumption in any given society, nor even explained why such a link should exist.
The writer is author of "Drink: an Informal History".
food + drinkMichelin-starred Tom Sellers on being this year's hottest property
tvParents (and kids) rejoice! A new wave of fantastic family entertainment is here
booksGeese, gorillas, grandads... and growing up
food + drinkHow one grocery e-tailer is gearing up for the Yuletide rush
food + drink
travelFor broadcaster Mishal Husain, a long-haul Club Med holiday was a chance for her family to explore its sense of 'zen' and 'animation'
Life & Style blogs
- 1 Hundreds arrested as Canadian police smash worldwide paedophile ring
- 2 Sherlock series 3: Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman provide teasers for the biggest comeback in British television
- 3 The man who made Femen: New film outs Victor Svyatski as the mastermind behind the protest group and its breast-baring stunts
- 4 Mass murder in the Middle East is funded by our friends the Saudis
- 5 Japan cracks down on leaks after scandal of Fukushima nuclear power plant
£80000 - £100000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Senior C++ De...
£25000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C++ Server Dev...
£300 - £350 per day: Harrington Starr: Leading Electronic Trading Software Ven...
£23999 - £32001 per annum + Benefits: Pro-Recruitment Group: An independent ac...