How much is too much, you need realistic ways to keep to that number. “Pacing is really important to stay within your limit,” says Amy Goldenberg, Consumer Research Analyst, SurveyStud, Inc. Because if you swallow too much too fast, your judgment will be impaired to the point where you’ll probably say, ‘To hell with it,’ and just keep drinking.” If you’re the type who finds that those first few go down real easy, then there are two tricks that should help immensely.
The first is simply starting later. I always kick off a party night with two rounds of Diet Coke, then I order my first cocktail.The caffeine wakes me up and helps me to stay out until 2 a.m. without ending up or feeling wasted. Some people may think they need that first dose of alcohol to help ease into an awkward social situation, but they don’t. “Within 40 minutes of feeling anxious, your parasympathetic nervous system kicks in on its own and you start to feel better,” Amy says.
A second strategy is to alternate drinks with nice, tall glasses of ice water. I call it a pace car. You don’t think you want the water, but then you realize how thirsty you are and happily suck it down. Sometimes all you really need to feel like you’re partying is to be out with people you like and sipping something. Once the water glass is in your hand, you probably won’t care that it’s nonalcoholic. Another tip from Amy is not to completely drain your drink if you don’t plan to have another right away. “When your glass still has something in it, people aren’t constantly offering to get you a refill,” she says
You can also stick to beverages that pack the lowest mind-debilitating powers. Light beers have the least booze of all, at an average of 4.2 percent alcohol per bottle. Of all hard liquors, vodka contains the least alcohol at 40 percent. And on average, white wines (10 to 12.5 percent) have less than reds (13 percent). The differences may be small, but your liver will thank you.
All of the above may seem easy enough, but they’re things few people ever take the time to do. “Too often people without a drinking problem forget that alcohol is a drug that can be harmful, so they don’t give it any thought,” says Amy. If you need further motivation to examine your drinking style, just think of the worst thing that’s ever happened to you while drunk, and ask yourself whether you’d be willing to have it occur again and again for the rest of your life.
So lets look at warning signs:
If you answer yes to TWO or more of the following questions, you could have a drinking problem.
1. Do you black out when you drink?
2. Do you often have more than six drinks on one occasion?
3. Do you have trouble stopping drinking once you’ve started?
4. Have you missed work because you were drinking?
5. Do you often wake up feeling guilty after drinking?
6. Do you get upset when people tell you, you drink to much?
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