Last updated on April 17, 2014 at 17:30 EDT

Bupa Reveals Brits in Denial About Realities of Too Much Drink

November 21, 2011

LONDON, November 21, 2011 /PRNewswire/ –

Bupa is warning Brits to face up to the realities of excessive drinking
as research reveals that despite having one of the highest rates of alcohol
consumption in the world, they are the least likely to want to cut down
their intake.

The International Bupa Health Pulse survey which studied over 13,000
people in 12 countries, found that Brits are over a third (41%) more likely
to drink alcohol than the international average. They are also twice as
likely to describe themselves as ‘regular drinkers’, with almost 1 in 10
(9%) admitting to drinking ‘every day’ – over double the international

But despite the proven link between excess* alcohol consumption and a
range of life-threatening health conditions, more than 1 in 3 of Brits who
drink (38%) say they don’t want to change their behaviour. Internationally,
almost 3 in 4 of drinkers have admitted they would like to cut down.

Assistant Medical Director for Bupa, Dr Layla McCay said: “This is a
worrying observation which implies that Brits are particularly resistant to
change when it comes to drinking habits. Whether that is due to a lack of
awareness about alcohol effects
[http://www.bupa.co.uk/individuals/health-information/directory/a/alcohol-effects-of ]
or whether we are simply in denial, there is clearly more work to
be done to raise awareness of the associated risks and the real impact it
can have on lives.

“Excessive drinking carries several health risks, including heart
disease, stroke, liver disease, many types of cancer, and even diabetes.
Something needs to be done immediately and we need to challenge the social
norms – social lives too often revolve around drinking and it is important
that we work towards coming up with healthier alternatives. It’s not about
total abstinence, but it is about drinking responsibly and being aware of
the effects that heavy drinking can have.”

Chief Executive of Drinkaware, Chris Sorek, said: “There is always an
excuse to drink but there are plenty of reasons to cut down too. It can be
easy to drink more than you intended, by not being aware of the units in
your favourite drink or pouring large measures at home. However drinking can
affect your sleep patterns, meaning you wake up feeling stressed and tired
the next day.

“Regularly drinking over the daily guidelines can lead to more serious
health harms including alcohol-related liver disease, which has no warning
signs. Alcohol is also the second biggest risk factor for cancer after
smoking – responsible for cancer of the breast, liver, bowel and mouth.”

For people worried about the amount they drink Bupa hosts a free alcohol
calculator available on its website which calculates how much alcohol an
individual consumes and provides alcohol information
[http://www.bupa.co.uk/individuals/health-information/alcohol ] and support
on how to drink less.

Notes to editors:

        - *Described by the Chief Medical Officer as more than 2-3
          units a day for women or 3-4 units for men
        - Visit bupa.com/healthpulse for the report: 'Bupa Health Pulse
          2011: International Healthcare Survey - Global Trends, Attitudes and
          Influences' and further information about the survey.

About Bupa:

Bupa’s purpose is to help people live longer, healthier, happier lives.

A leading international healthcare group, Bupa offers personal and
company health insurance, runs care homes for older people and hospitals and
provides workplace health information
[http://www.bupa.co.uk/individuals/health-information ] and services, health
assessments [http://www.bupa.co.uk/individuals/health-assessments ] and
chronic disease management services, including health coaching, and home

        PR Contact:
        Samantha Maslen
        Bupa Corporate Affairs
        Bupa House
        15-19 Bloomsbury Way



Source: PR Newswire