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Delhi Wine Club

Posted: Wednesday, December 23 2009. 11:32

Women n Wine Culture Heading for Alcoholism in Ireland

Although women have been credited for promoting wine culture in various countries including Australia, USA and UK, a survey indicates that middle-aged Irish women are following UK example and are endangering their health by drinking higher amounts steadily for prolonged periods.

The wine culture that has emerged in Ireland as a result of the boom times is playing a pivotal role in influencing the drinking habits of the middle-aged Irish female according to a report in the Independent.

Big and powerful New World wines with high alcohol levels and big glasses recommended by wine connoisseurs are apparently creating a dangerous culture of over-indulgence in alcohol, according to health experts who claim that most women see the consumption of dangerous quantities of wine as harmless.

More and bigger marketing campaigns are targeting  female drinkers as they sit down at home with their friends to watch television shows like Desperate Housewives and The X Factor in Ireland.

A recent analysis of data spanning over a decade has revealed that within the 45-64 age group there has been a marked increase in alcohol consumption among Irish women.

Professor Hannah McGee from the Royal College of Surgeons says that drinking habits have changed dramatically over the past 10 years.

The phenomenon of drinking at home increased when the smoking ban became effective, and later strengthened by the introduction of more stringent drink-driving regulations. This has forced many women to drink more steadily.

‘We don't know how to drink wine in this country. In France, they will have one or two glasses of wine with their food and that will be it for the night, but in Ireland, we keep on drinking after the dinner’ is the general refrain from experts .

It is not unusual to see a person drink one or two bottles of wine in one night, and there is no stigma attached to this. As a result, many people are clocking up an astonishing amount of units in their weekly intake of alcohol on wine.

Increasingly, we are seeing women, who are finding themselves under intense stress, reaching for a bottle of wine after work because they think it will solve their problems.

At present, the number of females presenting for treatment for alcoholism in Ireland is nearly equal to that of males but experts predict that women will surpass men soon unless there is a major change in drinking habits.

How Much Alcohol is safe

UK has woken up to the problem of women binging on wine-by-the-glass the serving for  which has been increasing in size to 250 mL or even more, and the continuing higher levels of alcohol from New World, during the last couple of years-delWine has reported earlier on this issue..

The recommendations according to the UK health governing bodies is no more than two to three units of alcohol a day for women and three to four units for men, with two or three alcohol-free days each week. The key in drinking is regularity and moderation.

Calculate your own units

Establish the strength of the drink or the level of alcohol in your drink (% ABV) and amount of liquid in mL ( a standard glass of wine is 150ml based on 5 glasses to a bottle)  Multiply the amount of drink in mL by the percentage ABV, and then divide by 1,000. For example, 150 ml wine at 14% ABV is 150 X 14/1000 = 2.1 units.

India is still in the state of infancy in wine drinking culture with women playing an important and increasing role. Hopefully, they are pre-warned about the harmful effects of excessive drinking from such studies and will be restrained and responsible in the amount they drink as the wine culture spreads and availability eases.


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