How much can you drink in four days on holiday?

Image copyright PA Image caption Try doing five shots on your last night out this Christmas

If you’re on holiday, then you’re probably thinking about the thought of bar tab spending.

According to research from Guinness Breweries, drinking is already on the rise.

In 2018, more than 40% of Brits will have more than five pints when they celebrate the festive season, an average of about 84 litres of alcohol.

But it’s not just Brits: a similar proportion of people from Germany (43%) and Italy (41%) are planning to drink more in the summer months.

The more you drink, the less you see it as “normal”.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption A person can have a relatively small amount of alcohol by the volume

According to data from the charity Alcohol Concern, just 3% of adults now think they can drink up to 13 units a week, which is the amount recommended for drinking less than three days.

The research found older adults were more likely to see drinking as “normal” while younger adults said it was difficult to work out how much they could have.

It also revealed that almost one in three adults believes standard drinks are around 8-9 units – which would be equivalent to between two and three pints of beer or six units of wine, depending on strength.

Here’s the scoop on how much you can have on holiday.

In the UK, adults can drink a maximum of 21 units (equivalent to around seven pints of 2.5l) over a week.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Every week, men need to drink 21 units of alcohol to stay healthy.

How much do you need to drink on holiday?

The first things you’ll probably be thinking about are the shots (or maybe non-alcoholic cocktails) and the champagne.

According to the NHS, if you take only regular glasses of wine or lager, you’re likely to get a glass or two drunk but you’re not likely to ingest much more than your recommended weekly allowance of alcohol.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption As well as drinking, it’s important to exercise and stay healthy

So, what are you up against when you’re on holiday? Well, you can expect lager, wine, whisky, gin and ciders to be popular on holiday.

However, Guinness says you shouldn’t just enjoy your drinks as much as you possibly can.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Guinness says beer is a good choice on holiday because it can be drunk in small amounts and is cheap

It’s also worth noting that if you make a long-term commitment to the drink, or drink with strong levels of caffeine, then it’s best to stick to a low-unit/fewer-units drinking strategy.

For example, if you want to try two single pints of regular beer, then that might be four units. However, on holiday, you’ll only need one pint to have more than five units, which is almost half of your weekly limit.

You might need to take some special measures when there’s no bigger pool of bums to sit next to.

Exercise needs and injuries on holiday

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The NHS advises people to plan their exercise carefully

And what happens when you go on holiday without exercising? The NHS says just 2% of holidaymakers say they won’t exercise while they’re away, compared to 30% of adults who say they’ll binge drink instead.

It does say that a change in routine can make it easier to keep fit, but the general health message is to get active throughout the year.

How do you avoid injury?

This time of year can sometimes bring with it dodgy footwear and some unnecessary sunburn.

A famous saying is “Don’t sweat the small stuff”. But it’s worth remembering that these activities require careful attention, just like any other.

“Something that is likely to damage you is standing in a glass of water for an extended period of time and then walking without applying a shoe,” says Cambridge Clinical Exercise Psychologist, Nina McLean.

She says that injuries that are actually more common on holiday include bruises and grazes from falls. Also, making the effort to walk up and down stairs properly could also lead to a few bruises and cuts.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Cheers – “make the effort to walk up and down stairs properly”

There are three strategies you can take if you do find yourself in a holiday injury situation:

1. As a precaution, stay inside and mop up with a change of clothes and a towel if you can

2. Protect your body from unnecessary sunburn by wearing a wide-brimmed hat

3. Tell someone where you are and where you’re

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