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How Much is “One Drink” of Alcohol? Is One Drink a Day Healthy?

July 23, 2008

Reading USMLE step 2 CK materials and facing so many related to alcohol abuse and the complications of it,few questions related to alcohol popped up in my mind. Here are the questions and the answers I found.

1. How much is one drink of alcohol? The answer with some simple calculations can be seen here>>>.

2. How much drinking is too much? This is probably the toughest question, especially for people coming from countries having long traditions and even competitions in drinking (e.g. mostly Eastern European countries including Russia, Bulgaria, Poland, and some Western European countries famous with beer drinking and bar fist fighting, such as Scotland, Ireland, England, less likely Germany). For some people the limit is until they fall under the table. For that type of “macho drinkers” I would recommend one fast alcohol drinking screening test before they start feeling their liver close to the spina iliaca anterior superior (anterior superior iliac spine). How to Recognize Problem Drinking will also be helpful to identify the problem.

3. Is there such thing as a healthy drinking (they say one glass of red wine increase HDL with 5%, one to two shots of liquor are good for the heart)? There is a new research from this year showing that one drink might be of some benefit, but 2 is not healthy anymore. However, doctors will never prescribe anybody alcohol for healthy reasons. You better hit the gym, not the bar.

4. How much alcohol per day/week is still in the normal range? Good news for the few drinks per weeks lovers. Here is the “safe” amount of alcohol you can ingest weekly without fear of becoming alcoholic in the next few years.

5. Drinking and driving is out of question. Just it case here is a Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) Calculator.

21 Comments leave one →
  1. July 24, 2008 11:20 am

    Regarding #3

    If over drinking has potential dangers why should we tell people: go ahead and have a glass of red wine/day because it is good for your heart?

    One difference I noticed since I was a kid was how a nutritionist would tell how Omega 3, Vitamin A, this and that are good for. Make sure you eat a lot of fish, whole grain, and green leafy vegetables.

    On the other hand the physician would tell you that you should take ABC and XYZ supplement PILLS.

    Nutritionists will always argue that eating the real stuff is better because it is NATURAL.

    On the other hand physicians always say that taking the pills is better because they are purified, modified, and scientifically synthesized in the safest, best, suitable way for human consumption.

    Now when it comes to alcohol we will tell or patients to go ahead and drink a glass a day?! Is that going too carried a way? ( I just said the last sentence because it rhymes 😀 )

    • Anonymous permalink
      October 14, 2011 5:20 am

      Eating the real stuff is often better because it has better bioavailability. “Natural” means little to nothing.

      Whole wheat bread is somewhat modified by man while say a poisonous mushroom can be completely natural. With a little research, a will to learn and a respect for science you can understand nutrition better than if you trust things that are “natural” or “organic”.

  2. July 24, 2008 11:53 am

    @Y.S.: I know, this is what some of the physician say to the patients. May be they want to look cool. My brother-in-low has high cholesterol and had Percutaneous Transluminal Coronary Angioplasty (PTCA). After he visited his family physician, he was told that drinking red wine will help to reduce the re-occurrence of the disease. So, he found the shortcut and doesn’t follow healthy eating and exercising habits, believing that drinking half bottle of wine every second day will help him. The real true is a bit different.

    “The American Heart Association does not recommend that anyone start drinking alcohol to prevent heart disease. Reducing risk can be done using other methods such as exercise and following a healthy diet.”

  3. July 24, 2008 11:54 am

    @Y.S.: BTW I like the rhyme in your last sentence.

  4. Anonymous permalink
    October 15, 2008 9:20 am


  5. koloud permalink
    November 5, 2008 11:58 am

    i think that drugs and alkahole are good for you because they make you feel imortal and invinceable not that i have ever ryed hem in my life

  6. November 5, 2008 1:50 pm

    It’s a personal choice. There is nothing wrong to use drugs and alcohol, as long as you don’t break the rules. Even if you break the rules, it is still OK…they call these people “rebels”. Unfortunately most of them end up in jail or hospital.

  7. October 14, 2009 3:20 am

    Read a new pharmacology blog!
    Nootropic & other Psychotropic drugs.
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  8. June 15, 2010 11:58 am

    me and my wife have tested so many weightloss programs. I would have to say that Capsiplex pills show the best results, they seem to bring FAST results!, not bad at all.

  9. December 30, 2011 2:48 pm

    I want to say thanks to all for the good place to have discussions and to share good
    information and related matters.

  10. May 29, 2012 12:04 pm

    yes it is now proved that one class of wine/beer daily will make you healthy in latter years of life. vowww it will make me daily Ton…. hahah

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