Alcohol Basics

Alcohol Basics

If you are a college student, it is important to know the basics about alcohol.  Whether or not you choose to drink, chances are you will encounter friends, acquaintances, or fellow students who do.  Thus, in some way, alcohol is bound to affect you during your college experience.

Did you know?

  • Alcoholic beverages supply calories but few nutrients. Heavy drinkers are at risk of malnutrition because alcohol contains calories that may substitute for those in nutritious foods. If you choose to drink, it should be in moderation and with meals to slow alcohol absorption.
  • Alcohol affects each person differently depending on: number of drinks per hour, strength of alcohol (proof or percentage), your individual body composition, your weight, your gender, your age, your use of medication, your mood changes, your personal metabolism rate, amount of food in your stomach, what you mix drinks with or family history of alcoholism.
  • The liver can only metabolize .5 ounces (about 1 drink) of alcohol per hour.

  • Alcohol abuse is defined as drinking more than 2 drinks a day for men and more than 1 drink a day for women.

  • A 0.08 blood alcohol content (BAC) is considered legally drunk and it can only take the average person 2-3 drinks per hour to reach this limit.  With the way some college students binge drink these days, that isnít much!

Safe Drinking

The best way to avoid the risks and dangers that come with drinking alcohol is to abstain altogether.  This is the healthiest and safest choice. 

If you DO choose to drink, do so responsibly.  This means following the BLUE ZONE, which includes knowing and setting drinking limits before you drink.

The limit suggested for "safe drinking" is a BAC of .08 or below.  This is not only the legal limit in most U.S. states, but for the average person there is less risk at this level of experiencing the negative effects of alcohol.

It is critical to realize that there are several factors that determine how drinking will affect you.  Just because you many hang out with a certain group of friends who act, dress and behave like you, does NOT mean that alcohol will affect you the same way it does them.  Each individual reacts to alcohol different!!

A Standard Drink



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