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Isolation: how to cut down your drinking at home

2nd Apr 2020

During these unprecedented and often stressful times in isolation, it can be easy to fall into bad habits - like drinking more alcohol than you usually do. That's why we've put together some ideas around how to cut down your alcohol consumption at home. Do you know much do you drink? Take our Is My Drinking Normal? quiz to find out.

You can also check out our advice around:

Coronavirus, alcohol and your mental health

Ways to relax without drinking

Know your drinking

The Ministry of Health recommends limiting alcohol consumption to:

  • Two standard drinks a day for women and no more than 10 standard drinks a week.
  • Three standard drinks a day for men and no more than 15 standard drinks a week.

And, on a single occasion of drinking, no more than:

  • Four standard drinks for women.
  • Five standard drinks for men.

Take the guesswork out of how much you're drinking by measuring your alcohol intake - household measuring devices will do the trick. Find out what a standard drink looks like. 

Drink free days

Opt to have at least two alcohol-free days every week. If you're socialising online with friends or family for 'happy hour', try an alcohol-free mocktail - you can even get the children involved coming up with recipes together.

Go small

Trends in wine glasses can make it hard to judge what’s small, medium or large. Measure your alcohol intake - household measuring devices will do the trick. An easy way of cutting down is to buy small (125ml) wine glasses for the house, rather than large 250ml ones - which equals a third of a bottle of wine! - and half pint glasses for drinking beer or lager. Invest in a good bottle stop so that you can keep the remainder of your wine for another day.

Distract yourself

Don’t let bad habits creep in, like sitting with a glass of wine or beer at your computer, and opening a bottle of something when your day is over. Instead, hydrate with water during the day and try alcohol-free alternatives after work. Find a new meaning for 'happy hour' by doing something that makes you happy - going for a bike ride or walk, or calling your best friend.