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Keeping a Tab on Alcohol Limits Consumption

Keeping a Tab on Alcohol Limits Consumption At a time when the concept of government mandating health insurance in the US is under debate, a new government directive in the UK has physicians advising their patients to stop excessive consumption of alcohol.

The current question in the UK is how best to give this advice?

A new study published online in the journal Addiction looked at prior clinical trials to learn about the methods that were used to reduce drinking across the different studies.

Among the many different components of the advice, such as providing information on the harms of excessive drinking, trying to boost motivation and self-confidence, and advising on avoidance of social cues for drinking, they found that the most effective piece of advice was to encourage the patient to monitor his or her alcohol consumption, typically by keeping a daily record.

Lead author Susan Michie explains why self-monitoring is such helpful advice:

“In brief interventions, it’s important to advise people how to reduce their drinking rather than just saying they ought to drink less. Getting patients to record how much alcohol they drink each day provides a concrete, easy task that raises their awareness of their behavior and how well they are doing in staying within limits that they set themselves.

‚ÄúThis may seem like common sense but common sense needs to be supported by hard evidence for it to be acted upon in official policies.”

The finding that keeping a “drinking diary” reduces imbibing is similar to the well-proven and successful dietary strategy that has an individual write down everything they may eat in a day.

Source: Wiley-Blackwell

Keeping a Tab on Alcohol Limits Consumption

Rick Nauert PhD

Rick Nauert, PhDDr. Rick Nauert has over 25 years experience in clinical, administrative and academic healthcare. He is currently an associate professor for Rocky Mountain University of Health Professionals doctoral program in health promotion and wellness. Dr. Nauert began his career as a clinical physical therapist and served as a regional manager for a publicly traded multidisciplinary rehabilitation agency for 12 years. He has masters degrees in health-fitness management and healthcare administration and a doctoral degree from The University of Texas at Austin focused on health care informatics, health administration, health education and health policy. His research efforts included the area of telehealth with a specialty in disease management.

APA Reference
Nauert PhD, R. (2018). Keeping a Tab on Alcohol Limits Consumption. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 21, 2019, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 Aug 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Aug 2018
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