Courtesy: Kristi Miller, The Sunday Telegraph

By Sophie Harris

When it comes to alcohol consumption, most Australians do not know how much is too much.

New research shows that a large proportion of the population are unaware of safe drinking levels, with young people particularly drinking more than they should.

In a survey conducted by the Centre for Alcohol Policy research, only five per cent of Australians are able to identify safe drinking limits, which according to the national safe drinking guidelines is two drinks per day for both men and women.

Survey researcher, Michael Livingston says that these figures are concerning, especially when the guidelines were established to reduce the health risks associated with alcohol.

“As you drink above two drinks you’re starting to put yourself at risk,” he said.
Mr Livingston says that young people especially are drinking well above what is considered safe.
“If you ask what’s low risk to drink on a Saturday night, the guidelines recommend no more than four drinks and young people are averaging estimates of eight or nine drinks as low risk.
“That’s where the harm really kicks in,” Mr Livingston said.

According to Mr Livingston, the results reflect a confusion between the drinking guidelines and the drink driving limits, which could be put down to a lack of promotion of the safe drinking guidelines.

“It’s quite disappointing since the guidelines were released, how little effort has gone into educating the public of their content,” said Mr Livingston.

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