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Think before you drink, says university research
Date:5/12/2008

People are being urged to think before they drink as part of a research project aimed at changing peoples binge drinking habits.

A team of health psychologists at The University of Nottingham plan to discover whether using the workplace to supply information on the health effects of binge drinking and asking employees for a small commitment to reducing the amount they drink in a single session could change peoples binge drinking behaviour in the long term.

Dr Martin Hagger, of the Risk Analysis, Social Processes and Health Research Group in the Universitys School of Psychology, said: The workplace offers an existing network that could allow us to get the message about binge drinking out to as many people as possible.

That could include people who are regularly going out for a few post-work pints, having one too many at the weekend or are simply unaware of the actual units of alcohol they are consuming at home.

Binge drinking has a huge impact on the UKs health, economy and society Department of Health figures show that up to 22,000 alcohol-related deaths occur every year, mainly resulting from stroke, cancer, liver disease, accidental injury or suicide; half of all violent crimes are associated with alcohol abuse; and around 70 per cent of all A&E attendances between midnight and 5am on weekend nights are alcohol-related.

Initially, staff working for organisations participating in the study would be given a leaflet highlighting the harmful health effects of binge-drinking, guidance on the recommended daily units (34 for men and 23 for women) and some helpful strategies for reducing alcohol intake.

Employees will be asked to spend five minutes engaging in a mental exercise that will encourage them to run through the benefits of reducing their binge drinking and help them to develop a basic plan for achieving their goal.

Dr Hagger said: Its all to do with raising peoples awareness of situations in wh
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Contact: Emma Thorne
emma.thorne@nottingham.ac.uk
44-115-951-5793
University of Nottingham
Source:Eurekalert

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