The past few months have been a challenging time for us all. Our daily routines have been thrown out of the window and replaced with Zoom calls, quiz nights, homeschooling and queues to buy food – how things have changed!
But that’s not all. Being stuck at home has also meant we’ve been faced with plenty more opportunities to drink.
Perhaps you’ve found yourself reaching for the wine after a tough day of Year 5 maths? Or maybe you look forward to an evening G&T to toast the slower pace of life? Either way, research shows that one in five of us is now drinking more often.
If you’re feeling worried – or even a little jaded – by your increased alcohol intake, these handy tips from our resident soberista Kirstin Chaplin may help get you back on track.
Have alcohol-free days
‘Limit the number of days you drink by setting new boundaries,' recommends Kirstin. 'Begin by committing to no alcoholic drinks on a Sunday. Not only will you start the week with a win under your belt, you’ll also feel clear-headed and motivated to keep going.’
Switch to non-alcoholic alternatives
‘If weekly quarantinis or quiz-night tipples are your downfall, choose low or no-alcohol alternatives instead. Remember, no one on the other side of the screen knows what’s in your glass! Try a McGuigan Zero Chardonnay if you’re a wine drinker or Budweiser Zero if you love lager. Robinson’s Crushed Lime & Mint with sparkling water also makes a quick and easy, alcohol-free alternative to a mojito.’
Or why not have a go at making this deliciously refreshing mock-jito?
Start with a soft drink
We love this tip! Kirstin says: ‘Often, the first drink we consume quenches our thirst so we knock it back quickly and set the tone for the rest of the night. When you start with a soft drink, it may help to fill you up and slow down your drinking rate. Try this at home and when the bars and restaurants reopen. I've found it really works.’
Choose the good stuff
Go for quality over quantity. Kirstin says: 'Add up how much you'd usually spend on alcohol per week, then treat yourself to one high-end bottle of wine for the same price. The more you pay for it, the more likely you are to savour it over a few days and enjoy the experience, rather than knocking it back in one night.' Remember, a bottle of wine contains more than four standard glasses, and spacing out the alcohol units you consume in a week, rather than 'saving' them all for one drinking session, is recommended.*
Use an app to track your units and savings
‘Watching the money you save add up as your units go down is a fantastic motivator. Not only that, by using an app such as Drinkaware**, you’ll also be able to set goals and uncover your booze weak spots.’ Find the app here.
Don’t keep alcohol in the house
‘During lockdown, buying our weekly groceries has taken on a whole new dimension. Whether you shop online or in store, the temptation to stock up makes it all too easy to justify buying extra alcohol. Remove booze from your weekly shop and only buy it when you plan to drink. Let’s face it, having to queue in the rain will quickly take the shine off!’
Looking to lower your alcohol consumption? Check our top 5 selection of summer mocktails to get you started...
Written by Kirstin Chaplin
If you look under 25 and want to purchase age restricted products you will need to prove your age. Challenge 25. No ID, no sale. Retailers have the right to refuse sale if they believe you to be under the legal age. For more information, visit drinkaware.co.uk.