Groups promote alcohol awareness

Members of Suffolk Alcohol Treatment Service, the Matthew Project and Live Well Suffolk at their sta

Members of Suffolk Alcohol Treatment Service, the Matthew Project and Live Well Suffolk at their stall on Ipswich's Cornhill - Credit: Archant

Several organisation have come together to promote a safer, healthier drinking culture in the county.

Live Well Suffolk, the Matthew Project and the Suffolk Alcohol Treatment Service are all trying to educate the public about the health risks associated with alcohol.

It’s all part of Alcohol Awareness Week and the groups shared a stand on Ipswich Cornhill yesterday afternoon during the town’s market.

As well as handing out leaflets and imparting advice to the members of the public they spoke to they also had some handy props which help visualise the message they wanted to get across.

Among these was a mini beer glass which showed units of alcohol by volume for different drinks and a wheel chart which that tells the reader the number of calories in beverages like wine, cider, beer and alcopops.

Graham Abbott from Suffolk Alcohol Treatment Service said: “We want to encourage conversation between people about their alcohol use.

“We want to encourage people to think about what they’re drinking, daily limits and having days off from drinking.”

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Buzz Seager, Marketing and Events Assistant at Live Well Suffolk said: “A lot of people don’t realise the calories in alcohol.

“If you were to have a strong pint of beer it’s got about the same calories in it as a cheeseburger.

“So someone who goes out, has a meal, goes on a night out, drinks eight pints and then gets a kebab afterwards, they’ve almost doubled their daily intake and then they wonder why they’ve got a beer belly.

“A small glass of wine has roughly 200 calories so someone who has a small glass of wine a night, that’s significantly contributing to putting on weight over a gradual period.”

Ruth Croft, Team Manager at the Matthew Project, said: “It’s about being sensible, it’s drinking sensibly.

None of us want to destroy christmas and make it an alcohol-free zone but what we’re saying is if you drink responsibly you can still enjoy yourself without the detrimental health effects that can occur.

“The timing (of Alcohol Awareness Week) helps but it’s something we need to talk about all year.

“In this country we have a real problem with binge drinking and if we dont start talking about it all of the time it’s something that gets forgetten about.”