Viewing 40 posts - 41 through 80 (of 145 total)
  • Reducing Beer Intake – Any Tips?
  • scotroutes
    Full Member

    Eventually you’re going to have to bite the bullet and quit the booze completely.

    Many of us manage to sustain a low intake. Plenty already posted on this thread.

    andy4d
    Full Member

    Similar to yourself, I was drinking 1 or 2 most nights, never really more and can’t rember last time I was drunk or had more than 3. Only drank Cider with an odd gin, no other spirits or wine. It was a habit I had got into and the weight was creeping up (you know, that bag of Crisps or biscuits with the drink).

    Back in April I got covid and couldn’t get out to buy drink so that broke the habit for me. Drank again for 1 or 2 weeks but asked myself why I drank and decided to just stop for a bit to loose some weight. I have not had a drink since April (including a holiday) and not missing it. I may drink again (I have 6 bottles sitting untouched) if I want but for now I am happy without and dont see the point of it. TBH I am a bit scared if I start again it may become a habit again and I don’t want that plus I am saving a few bob and lost some weight.

    I found drinking a bottle of water on the way home from work stopped me being thirsty when I got in and reaching for a thirst quenching one. I also got into tea leaves. I liked picking a nice bottle of cider and sitting enjoying it and relaxing, as I say it was a habit. Now I like trying different types of tea and the ritual of brewing a nice cuppa instead as it distracts me from thinking about a drink but still gives me something to do (a new habit I guess).

    Cougar
    Full Member

    What on earth is a “Jakey”?

    tabletop2
    Full Member

    Scottish for alky,

    Think junkie but for booze

    gobuchul
    Free Member

    What on earth is a “Jakey”?

    Scottish slang for a homeless alcoholic. Think drinking Tennent’s Super in the park.

    v7fmp
    Full Member

    i recently gave up booze. Not due to drinking too much, but because i became a weapons grade bellend if i had one too many.

    I poured away my last cans of cider and pretty much havent touched it since (i have had a few lager shandys).

    I do enjoy the ‘hit’ of a nice cold one still, but get that from the AF beers out there. Obviously we are all different, but i have tried a few now and they are all pretty good. AF Stella tastes better than regular Stella (not hard… i hear you say).

    But in your quest for help, i just echo everyone else, dont have it in the house. Just buy one or two cans when you do go shopping. Get some AF or an alternative ‘special drink’. Keep yourself busy during the periods of time when you do get the cravings.

    seriousrikk
    Full Member

    Could have typed the OP out myself a few months ago.

    As a regular drinker I was getting through a fair amount – couple of cans* five nights a week often a third or a spirit top up on two or three of those nights. Started realising how much of a problem it was when I was starting to have a can while cooking or a nip of rum before bed on the dry days.

    I’d started to move away from the spirits quite well earlier this year and had knocked one weeknight almost completely on the head. Then covid came along and stole my taste for a month. Alcohol tasted universally awful for a while and I managed to kick my consumption into touch. Now It’s a Friday, Saturday and occasional Tuesday thing and as often as not it’s only one decent craft thing. So yea, get covid, loose taste, problem solved 😀 But seriously, not having beer as an option is what really solved it for me.

    (Apart from the issue where the only thing I could taste is cadburys dairy milk so started unhealthy consumption of that instead)

    * My cans are generally 440ml & over 6%

    5-10 beers a week? Jebus someone phone the polis the man’s out of control!

    I know it was said in jest, but the attitude that makes this sort of comment a joke is why as a nation we have such a problem with alcohol.

    asbrooks
    Full Member

    Have you considered switching to wine?

    I did the exact thing as this.. For me all it did is switch one dependence for another.

    I’ll blame it on my wife who is a teacher, she’ll grab a bottle on her way home from school have one glass and I’ll finish it off. Like the OP said it’s not at a level for AA, but at times depending on my mental state can easily kick start weekday binges. Summer months are not too bad as I can distract myself by doing stuff. The long dark winter evenings are a different matter and its difficult to break the cycle.

    Thanks for posting this up as I suspect it affects quite a lot of us in the forum.

    I’ll give the app a go.

    Coyote
    Free Member

    ’m guessing it’s a self discipline issue for you OP.
    15 years ago I decided to not drink on weeknights and unless there’s a celebration, holiday or something similar I stick to that.

    Set a rule. Stick to it.

    I rarely don’t have any beer in the house and it makes no difference to me.

    This. Jeez there are some right handwringers on here.

    dazh
    Full Member

    I’ve never met anyone whose been a long term drinker and not a jakey.

    What’s a jakey?

    Edit: Answered above. Honestly it’s this sort of pious bullshit that doesn’t help. The issue not whether you’re dependent on alcohol either physically or mentally, but whether being so has a negative effect on your life.

    OP have you tried not worrying about it? 10-20 units a week is nothing to be concerned about, and if it helps you wind down of an evening and you enjoy it then what’s the problem?

    johnjn2000
    Full Member

    Lots of great comment thanks, and the one about 10-20 units not being very much, well I had a look at the units in the types of craft beers I drink, and it is more like 25-30 on some weeks. Not that it is a competition of course! I also think that the comment about why we have such a problem as a nation is spot on, we really do have a poor relationship with alcohol. It was apparent when I was in Beligium with work and I was handed the beer list, I had to do everything in my power not to drool. So much nice stuff but a lot was 8-10%ABV or more, when I pointed this out to the Belgian colleagues they didn’t understand my issue until we got into the way we drink in the UK. That first pint in the pub hardly hits the sides on its way down, in Belgium it would still be sat there with half left after 45 mins.

    Anyway, off topic, not the point. Going to try filling up on gassy water and cordial, and some adult soft drinks over the next few nights and see where that takes me. I would love to reach Friday night (coaching session in FoD during the day so beer needs will be strong in the evening) and then have 3 beers, enjoy them, and then not have another until one day next week. I am so glad I didn’t ever get into smoking as a youngster, I would have been hooked for life!

    avdave2
    Full Member

    Apply the same attitude as one should do to everything in life, why go to all the effort of drinking it now when I can put it off until tomorrow. 🙂

    Superficial
    Free Member

    Find something else to fill that particular void. It sounds very trite but I quite like a fruit tea of an evening.

    I am very strict on myself – I only drink Friday and / or Saturday because otherwise I could happily drink a few beers most nights. And if I did that I’d get fat and it’d cost loads, not to mention the adverse health effects of all that ethanol.

    I think this thread has demonstrated a lot of normalisation of borderline harmful drinking and ‘risky’ / dependent behaviours that could easily slip into problem drinking. So well done for recognising it.

    edhornby
    Full Member

    Have you tried tonic water and ice ? I find this useful as you don’t drink fast like beer

    Also keep trying as many different AF beers as you can and keep going back to the ones you previously discounted, by the time you’ve drunk lots of them you may well adjust to the taste. Keep in the fridge and drink from a glass definitely improves them, lets face it warm beer that has alcohol in it is also minging

    google AF beer club, they do selection packs

    Olly
    Free Member

    Cider?

    Jokes aside Could you try moving on to stubbies
    Do you like Lager (does anybody, really?)

    https://www.tesco.com/groceries/en-GB/products/292915750

    These little things are:

    Cheap (4 quid for 10)
    Weak (3.9%)
    Small (250ml)
    Not so nice that you need to have one after another

    But they are also:
    Nice enough (or tasteless enough)
    Wet
    Refreshing
    Fill the hole in your hand as easily as anything else.

    dazh
    Full Member

    well I had a look at the units in the types of craft beers I drink, and it is more like 25-30 on some weeks.

    That’s still not a lot in the grand scheme of things. By all means cut down if that’s what you want, it won’t do any harm and will help your wallet, but it’s not something to be particularly concerned about IMO.

    keefezza
    Free Member

    Is there anybody else close to you who may be doing similar and would be willing to join in with reducing intake?

    With 2 or more of you working together to reduce intake then you’ve got a team effort in keeping each other on track. Alternatively, use this thread as a challenge to report back on how you are getting on. Almost holding you to account but without unnecessary pressure.

    jambourgie
    Free Member

    What on earth is a “Jakey”?

    Someone’s never read an Irvine Welsh novel 🤣

    seosamh77
    Free Member

    5-10 beers a week? Jebus someone phone the polis the man’s out of control!

    I know it was said in jest, but the attitude that makes this sort of comment a joke is why as a nation we have such a problem with alcohol.

    It was said in jest, yes (though I appreciate it might not come across that way). I’m not one for telling anyone what to doing with alcohol, but I just thought it funny in the context of the drinking culture that surrounds me. Me, personally I’m a binge drinker, will easily tan the OPs amount and a shed load more on a session, but that’s just the culture about here. Albeit one I’ve partaken in less and less as the years roll by.

    Ultimately with the OP, you’d struggle to class it as problem drinking tbh, but what the OP has recognised is they are developing a taste for it. I’ve always been lucky in that I’ve never developed an addiction and take it or leave it is easy for me. But, if you are doing something every night, it’s a habit that has potential to develop into something a bit more serious.

    So yeah, fair play to the OP for recognising that. But you sound like you are far away from being an alcoholic, but the signs are there if you have the urge, so no need to be too hard on yourself, just work towards changing the habit. (Reason you don’t see benefits others do when giving up alcohol, is more than likely due to the quantities other people are drinking.)

    I know all about the urge, auld man also has it, but mind you he’ll easily put away the OPs 10-15 units a night 7 days a week. He’s an auld school irish drinking grafter though, you know the types, my granda was the same, still working and drinking beyond retirement, it’s just a way of life and will continue till they drop.

    But aye, fair play to the OP, a little can turn into a lot very quickly, given the tolerance levels for alcohol go up very quickly. So something to definitely raise an eyebrow at. And good you’ve noticed it before you develop a serious problem.

    austy
    Full Member

    I would recommend a book called atomic habits explains how habits are formed and can be broken.

    To break habits you need to understand the 4 phases, cue, craving, response and reward.

    To break the habit you need to make the cue invisible (not having beer in the house), make the craving unattractive and difficult (having to leave the house to get it) and make it unsatisfying (the health benefits might be one, extra cash, losing weight, enjoying riding more)

    kelvin
    Full Member

    [ looks at boxes of Tiny Rebel just inside front door ]

    Step one is probably to stop buying in lots of beer.

    [ to be fair to Kelvin past who ordered those boxes, this delivery is more than half alcohol free (reduced at Tiny Rebel at the mo, and tastes good) ]

    The stubbies plan is a good one though. You used to be able to buy 2.5% ones, and they were ideal for “just having one” on a warm evening. Not seen them in the shops for a few years though.

    v7fmp
    Full Member

    seems a bit odd that folks are saying 20 plus units a week isnt bad, when the NHS say anything over 14 units a week is a risk to your health.

    Feels a bit like willy waving?

    Dont get me wrong, drink as much as you like, but be under no illusions its bad for your health, wallet and beyond.

    seosamh77
    Free Member

    v7fmp
    Free Member
    seems a bit odd that folks are saying 20 plus units a week isnt bad, when the NHS say anything over 14 units a week is a risk to your health.

    Feels a bit like willy waving?

    Not really willy waving just that the 14 units a week is miles away from alcoholism or reality for a lot of people.

    jonnyfelloff
    Free Member

    Buying a hardtail frame as a project bike build has helped me. I can’t afford bike parts and spend money on beer. Beer is a spendy thing to piss away.

    tjagain
    Full Member

    I am glad you corrected the number of units. First step is to be honest about the amount you drink. I calculated what you said as being 30 units a week and that along with what you said about your attitude gives me concerns about the effects on your health. Its certainly into physical damage territory imo.

    As above i have known a few high functioning alcoholics. Ones now dead at 50 and one is now into a serious physical and mental health decline and still denies being an alcoholic.

    dazh
    Full Member

    seems a bit odd that folks are saying 20 plus units a week isnt bad, when the NHS say anything over 14 units a week is a risk to your health.

    NHS limits and reality are far apart in my experience. Yes I have no doubt that over 14 units is bad for your health. So is working, walking down a city street, driving a car, eating shit food and all manner of other things.

    Feels a bit like willy waving?

    Nope just honesty. Most people vastly underestimate or lie to themselves about how much they drink rather than the opposite. I know exactly how much I consume, what the potential health effects are and how much it costs. I also know the benefits. As always it’s a trade off.

    kelvin
    Full Member

    Oh… that tonic water and ice tip is also good one for the summer… I do that one as well.

    Evening drinks that aren’t alcohol are helpful. Some people swear by a green tea in the winter… that one didn’t work for me. Hot Vimto does to an extent. As does AF beer (see above).

    johnjn2000
    Full Member

    I calculated what you said as being 30 units a week and that along with what you said about your attitude gives me concerns about the effects on your health. Its certainly into physical damage territory imo.


    @tjagain
    , Damn these alchemists that have made beer much more desirable than the Fosters draft on offer when I was younger. Someone gifted me a 4 pack of Fosters last year, no way at all I would bother buying beer if it was all like that. It’s these lovely thick and juicy craft beers like Pupa and Stobe Sap from Vibrant Forest, sooo nice.

    But to your point on the units. Yes it has crept up to an unacceptably high number to me since my 2 week holiday, totally agree with you regarding the health implications. Pre holiday I think I was probably on 10 units on a good week and 20 on a bad week coming down to 5 or zero if I had a race. So it isn’t a regular thing, just need to catch it now and get out of the habit due to my addictive nature. Thanks for the input, you sound like you might have some healthcare background?

    v7fmp
    Full Member

    @dazh – my apologies for misinterpreting.

    I do wonder why you would dismiss the NHS guidelines or feel they are far from reality?

    And you are absolutely right about all the other risks that we take on a daily basis. It makes you wonder why people smoke, eat rubbish food or drink too much when its clearly bad for your health (physical and or mental).

    And just so there isnt lost context, i am by no means looking for an argument or to dismiss your comments, i am genuinely interested in your outlook on things.

    Although we do digress from the OP’s immediate concerns about cutting back.

    dazh
    Full Member

    I do wonder why you would dismiss the NHS guidelines or feel they are far from reality?

    I don’t dismiss them just think a limit which not many people adhere to (I don’t know the numbers but personal experience tells me this) is a bit of a pointless guideline. Maybe I just hang around loads of alcoholics but I don’t know anyone who drinks less than 14 units per week who isn’t already abstinent.

    i am genuinely interested in your outlook on things.

    I think my outlook on things is to be honest about both the pros and cons and try to put them into context. It’s a personal thing though so you can’t apply your own experiences to others very well. For me, at this point in time and for my entire adult life if I’m honest, drinking has more positives than negatives. That equation will no doubt change as I get older, but even if I have health problems then I’d have to weigh them against a lifetime of generally positive experiences. It’s not as easy as ‘drinking is bad, therefore I should do less of it’. I wish it was!

    v7fmp
    Full Member

    Dazh – fair play, that makes total sense and clearly works for you. I wish my mindset was a bit less worrying about tomorrow and living for today.. but thats a whole other can of worms!! 😀

    monkeyboyjc
    Full Member

    I run a shop that’s attached to the house so alcohol is always available, but I’ve not had a (alcoholic) drink in years. I had a charity ride at the end of the summer 2015 and reduced my alcohol in the run up, then thought I’d see if I could continue to Christmas, made it through Christmas so did the same to new year and it stuck ever since. I guess I’m saying some kinda goal helps with the mental process.

    tonyd
    Full Member

    I agree with TJ, my first thought was that you could be alcoholic. You don’t need to drink all the time to be dependent on something so the fact that you have X dry days per week and Y wet isn’t conclusive either way, but that you need to measure dry days versus wet suggests to me that you don’t have a healthy relationship with alcohol. If you are counting dry days to help justify wet days then you might have a problem, for example “I’ve been dry for three days, I deserve a drink” – I’d bet you spent those three dry days looking forward to your reward, that’s not healthy. Not making assumptions here, just giving examples.

    The stigma attached to dependency of any kind is reducing every day, I think the younger generations are far more open to seeing it for what it is rather than either a badge of honour or something to be ashamed of.

    johnjn2000
    Full Member

    @tonyd, I think you have a good point here. It is almost like in the younger days of late teens to early 30’s you would be going out on a Fri/Sat to meet friends and a bi-product of that was beer. Now, through the introduction of children, more serious work responsibility, mortgages, bills, and bike parts, it seems to have turned to I am looking for ward to that beer on Friday and there may or may not be friends involved. So we are looking at the short term dopamine fix that beer gives you to relax rather than the focus being on a social meet up.

    Interesting to ponder. Still quite comfortable that I am not an alcoholic however I am very aware that I could easily become one if I put enough work into it 🙂

    thisisnotaspoon
    Full Member

    NHS limits and reality are far apart in my experience. Yes I have no doubt that over 14 units is bad for your health. So is working, walking down a city street, driving a car, eating shit food and all manner of other things.

    That’s a bit misleading though.

    More recent research shows there’s NO safe amount of alcohol. A small amount doesn’t offset it’s own effect’s with reduced stress related illness, tannins, or whatever else. The argument is pretty much at a stage tobacco was in the 50’s with “Physicians smoke Luckies” adverts, just substitute Lucky Strike for Red Wine.

    So if someone drinks 10/15/20/30 units a week and want’s to cut down, that’s certainly going to help health risks. Even if those risks aren’t the same almost certainties that even heavier drinkers face.

    It’s SSUK this weekend, so I’ll be drinking, probably cloudy beer and some homemade blackcurrant whiskey.

    irc
    Full Member

    seems a bit odd that folks are saying 20 plus units a week isnt bad, when the NHS say anything over 14 units a week is a risk to your health.

    Because the 14 units limit was set by “temperance zealots”.

    https://velvetgloveironfist.blogspot.com/2019/04/the-drinking-guidelines-were-set-by.html

    Don’t forget there is plenty evidence hat moderate consumption is beneficial at the level of one or two drinks per day.

    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22229788/

    So if alcohol is harmless or beneficial at 14 units a week I’m fairly sure I wouldn’t worry about doing 21 units (the old guideline) or a bit more depending on circumstances. For example the guidelines are the same for everyone. But logically someone of bigger than average build will have a higher safe threshold all else equal.

    I’m well aware of the dangers of excessive alcohol consuption. My brother in law drank himself to death in his 40s. A good friend choked to death on his vomit while in a drunken stupor. That is far away from the OP though. They were drinking probably 20 units a day.

    tjagain
    Full Member

    Johnjn2000

    A healthcare background but not much in this field. Also was in a similar situation to yourself a decade or more ago tho i didnt drink.in the house but in the lovely pub over the road. My couple of pints a couple of times a week had become several pints several times a week. My weight had gone up significantly and my sleep was disordered to the point of affecting my work.

    I just cut it right back and now hardly drink at all. I can go weeks without a drink.

    thisisnotaspoon
    Full Member

    Because the 14 units limit was set by “temperance zealots”.

    At first I thought Poes law…… then

    Don’t forget there is plenty evidence hat moderate consumption is beneficial at the level of one or two drinks per day.

    Nope, there’s not. Even your ‘we’ve had enough of experts’ style ranty link concedes that (seriously, that website looks like it was designed by a red faced gammon on the free computers at the library).

    https://www.thelancet.com/article/S0140-6736(18)31571-X/fulltext

    Don’t forget there is plenty evidence hat moderate consumption is beneficial at the level of one or two drinks per day.

    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22229788/

    And to quote the other link (did you even read it?):

    Although some form of a cardioprotective association was confirmed in all strata, substantial heterogeneity across studies remained unexplained and confidence intervals were relatively wide, in particular for average consumption of one to two drinks/day.

    A cardioprotective association between alcohol use and ischaemic heart disease cannot be assumed for all drinkers, even at low levels of intake. More evidence on the overall benefit-risk ratio of average alcohol consumption in relation to ischaemic heart disease and other diseases is needed in order to inform the general public or physicians about safe or low-risk drinking levels.

    Which in plain English is “results were at best neutral, and varied wildly”.

    thecaptain
    Free Member

    NHS advisory limit went from 21 to 14 (for men) a few years ago for not much reason really, 21 isn’t an awful lot if you’re a reasonable-sized man. I reckon I must be quite close to that, sometimes over, not by much and not always though. I don’t believe I’m anywhere close to being an alcoholic, I drank much more as a student for several years on the trot, and I’m still very fit in my 50s. I can do without very easily for several days in a row, but I don’t abstain often because I like beer and I like the relaxation of alcohol (in moderation)!

    Not trying to claim alcohol is good for me, just I don’t think it’s very bad….

    thecaptain
    Free Member

    To reply more directly to the OP, one approach that may be useful is to have alcohol-free beers in the house, and pick up one of those instead of a strong drink. I did that a few times over lockdowns when I felt I was tipping towards a bit much….

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