My Drinks Check

Take our quick drinks check to see:

  • The calorie equivalents you're drinking each week
  • How many miles you need to walk to burn that calorie equivalent off
  • How you compare to other people

If your results show that small changes are likely to make you feel better, we'll give you some personalised tips to get you started.


Please note: My Drinks Check is for over 18s only and is only designed to point you in the right direction. It's not a medical assessment. If you're worried about your drinking or if someone you care about is drinking too much there is lots of help available. Here are the details of a local, friendly and confidential service for Liverpool residents that you can get in touch with: Liverpool Community Alcohol Service 0151 529 4504 (for Liverpool residents only). Alternatively you can see your GP. If you live outside of Liverpool your GP can provide details of your local community alcohol service.

Tell us what you drink each day

This doesn’t have to be exact to the drop but please try to be as honest and accurate as you can. Click to add your drinks on each day below.

Mon

Monday's Beer & Cider

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

Lagers like Carling, Fosters and Carlsberg are often around 3-4% whereas drinks like San Miguel, Stella and Export lagers are more likely to be 5%. (Try checking the side of the can or bottle to be sure.)

Monday's Wine & Bubbles

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

If you don't know how strong your wine is, it's worth knowing that wines are getting stronger and many wines are now 14% strength or higher. Rose wines tend to be weaker.

Monday's Sherry & Port

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Monday's Shots & Spirits

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Monday's Pre-mixed Drinks

Add another type of drink

Tue

Tuesday's Beer & Cider

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

Lagers like Carling, Fosters and Carlsberg are often around 3-4% whereas drinks like San Miguel, Stella and Export lagers are more likely to be 5%. (Try checking the side of the can or bottle to be sure.)

Tuesday's Wine & Bubbles

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

If you don't know how strong your wine is, it's worth knowing that wines are getting stronger and many wines are now 14% strength or higher. Rose wines tend to be weaker.

Tuesday's Sherry & Port

Add another type of drink

Tuesday's Shots & Spirits

Add another type of drink

Tuesday's Pre-mixed Drinks

Add another type of drink

Wed

Wednesday's Beer & Cider

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

Lagers like Carling, Fosters and Carlsberg are often around 3-4% whereas drinks like San Miguel, Stella and Export lagers are more likely to be 5%. (Try checking the side of the can or bottle to be sure.)

Wednesday's Wine & Bubbles

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

If you don't know how strong your wine is, it's worth knowing that wines are getting stronger and many wines are now 14% strength or higher. Rose wines tend to be weaker.

Wednesday's Sherry & Port

Add another type of drink

Wednesday's Shots & Spirits

Add another type of drink

Wednesday's Pre-mixed Drinks

Add another type of drink

Thu

Thursday's Beer & Cider

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

Lagers like Carling, Fosters and Carlsberg are often around 3-4% whereas drinks like San Miguel, Stella and Export lagers are more likely to be 5%. (Try checking the side of the can or bottle to be sure.)

Thursday's Wine & Bubbles

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

If you don't know how strong your wine is, it's worth knowing that wines are getting stronger and many wines are now 14% strength or higher. Rose wines tend to be weaker.

Thursday's Sherry & Port

Add another type of drink

Thursday's Shots & Spirits

Add another type of drink

Thursday's Pre-mixed Drinks

Add another type of drink

Fri

Friday's Beer & Cider

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

Lagers like Carling, Fosters and Carlsberg are often around 3-4% whereas drinks like San Miguel, Stella and Export lagers are more likely to be 5%. (Try checking the side of the can or bottle to be sure.)

Friday's Wine & Bubbles

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

If you don't know how strong your wine is, it's worth knowing that wines are getting stronger and many wines are now 14% strength or higher. Rose wines tend to be weaker.

Friday's Sherry & Port

Add another type of drink

Friday's Shots & Spirits

Add another type of drink

Friday's Pre-mixed Drinks

Add another type of drink

Sat

Saturday's Beer & Cider

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

Lagers like Carling, Fosters and Carlsberg are often around 3-4% whereas drinks like San Miguel, Stella and Export lagers are more likely to be 5%. (Try checking the side of the can or bottle to be sure.)

Saturday's Wine & Bubbles

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

If you don't know how strong your wine is, it's worth knowing that wines are getting stronger and many wines are now 14% strength or higher. Rose wines tend to be weaker.

Saturday's Sherry & Port

Add another type of drink

Saturday's Shots & Spirits

Add another type of drink

Saturday's Pre-mixed Drinks

Add another type of drink

Sun

Sunday's Beer & Cider

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

Lagers like Carling, Fosters and Carlsberg are often around 3-4% whereas drinks like San Miguel, Stella and Export lagers are more likely to be 5%. (Try checking the side of the can or bottle to be sure.)

Sunday's Wine & Bubbles

Add another type of drink

Not sure?

If you don't know how strong your wine is, it's worth knowing that wines are getting stronger and many wines are now 14% strength or higher. Rose wines tend to be weaker.

Sunday's Sherry & Port

Add another type of drink

Sunday's Shots & Spirits

Add another type of drink

Sunday's Pre-mixed Drinks

Add another type of drink
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Step 4 of 11

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Your weekly drinking results

25%

Use the buttons to see how your results would change if you cut out 1, 2 or 3 drinks each day you drink.

Use the slider to see how your results would change if you cut out 1, 2 or 3 drinks each day you drink.

If you're pregnant or trying to get pregnant you should not drink alcohol at all.
Your top tips

Now we know more about how you drink, we'd like to suggest some simple tips that you could try using to drink less. You don't need to do them all. Pick what works best for you and your life.

Try drink free days.

If you drink regularly your body starts to build up a tolerance to alcohol. This means the more you drink, the more your body gets used to it, resulting in you needing to drink more to get the same effect. You could try taking some time off from alcohol or choosing not to drink for a couple of days each week to give your body a break and help it to 'reset'.

Red wine does more harm than good.

Although media stories that red wine is good for you are very popular, the catchy headlines can be misleading. Many of the studies quoted in these stories have limitations or flaws that cast doubt on their findings. Alcohol should not be promoted as a way to improve health. There is no safe drinking level, and regularly drinking too much increases your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, liver disease and some cancers. The way to enjoy a longer healthier life is to drink less alcohol, eat a healthier diet, exercise more, and quit smoking.

Tip 10

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Dilute your drinks.

A popular way to drink less is to have a wine spritzer using soda water or a shandy instead of a pint (a shandy is beer or lager diluted with lemonade, make sure to ask for low-sugar lemonade). This will not only help you cut back on how much you are drinking, but your calories too! If you aren't keen on diluting your drink then try to reduce the number of drinks you are having on each occasion instead.

Swap to a lower strength to cut your calories.

Knowing the alcoholic strength of what you are drinking is really quite important. A simple way to reduce the amount of alcohol and calories you're drinking is to swap strong beers or wines for ones with a lower strength. The strength can be seen on the side of cans/bottles and on pumps in pubs as "% ABV", which stands for alcohol by volume. This is sometimes written as "vol" or "alcohol volume". A 1% difference may not sound much but it adds up over a few drinks.

Find other ways to relax and ease stress.

Drinking regularly can make you feel down or even lead to feelings of anxiety or depression, which make stress harder to deal with. This is because regular drinking interferes with neurotransmitters in our brains that are needed for good mental health. It's better to find out what's making you feel stressed and look for ways to deal with it. If stress can't be avoided, look for other ways to manage it better. Exercise can help. So can talking things through with someone and making sure you spend time doing things that you enjoy. For more ideas visit the other ways to relax section of our website.

Cutting down alcohol may help lift your mood.

There's a strong link between heavy drinking and depression, and hangovers often make you feel anxious and low. If you already feel anxious or sad, drinking can make this worse, so cutting down may put you in a better mood generally. Making changes in your life, such as resolving a difficult situation, talking about your problems or getting more sleep, can usually improve your mood. Check out the following useful link for tips about how to be happier, more in control, and able to cope better with life's ups and downs https://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/Pages/feel-better-and-happy.aspx

If negative feelings don't go away, are too much for you to cope with, or are stopping you from carrying on with your normal life, you may need to make some changes and get some extra support. Talk to your GP or call NHS 111. There is more information about help for low mood at https://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/Pages/low-mood-and-depression.aspx

Drinking to boost your confidence can backfire.

Alcohol suppresses the parts of the brain which control inhibition, so a drink or two may make you feel more socially confident when out socialising. But these pleasant effects wear off fast and as you drink more, more parts of the brain are affected. Alcohol may also make you angry or aggressive or can make you feel more anxious or down. You may do or say things that you wouldn't when you're sober, and which you regret the next day.

If you would like information about how to build your confidence and help you relax in social situations, without the need to drink, there is a wide range of useful resources on NHS Choices. See: http://www.nhs.uk/livewell/mentalhealth/Pages/Mentalhealthhome.aspx

Sleep better after a shift.

Shift work can disrupt your internal 'body clock' which can lead to poor sleep and a lack of energy. Having a drink to relax or help you sleep after your shift actually makes things worse. If you have alcohol in your system when you go to sleep you might go to sleep easier, but there's a good chance you'll get less restful sleep. On average it takes your body two hours to process a pint of beer. Visit the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for a range of techniques to help improve the quality of your sleep.

Find a way to relax that you like - that doesn't involve having a drink.

We all need ways to unwind from our busy lives. Drinking alcohol may make you feel relaxed at the time, but can make you feel worse afterwards. Simple activities like exercise, reading, yoga, playing music, cooking something new or making time for a hobby can all help you wind down. Find what works for you.

Drinking less is a good way to reduce tiredness.

Some people feel that having a drink helps them deal with tiredness, but this usually only leaves you feeling more tired, more often. If you can reduce the amount you drink when you're tired, you should start to notice a real boost in your energy levels.

Drop a drink size.

A really easy trick to drink a little less without feeling like you are missing out is to go for smaller sizes. Try bottled beer instead of pints, or a small glass of wine instead of a large one.

Can you have one less?

Each time you have a drink, ask yourself "Can I have one less?"

Keep wine for longer.

Why not save some wine until tomorrow? Most wine keeps for a couple of days if you use a bottle stop.

Keep an eye on how much is in your glass.

It's easy to drink too much when you're at home. Pay attention to how much you or your friends and family pour into your glass and always make sure to finish one drink before pouring another. Topping up drinks makes it harder to keep track of how much you've had and to know when you planned to stop.

Tip 7

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Delay your first drink.

A lot of people don't think about how long they actually spend drinking. One way to drink less is to put off having your first drink until later. For example if you wait until 7 or 8 o'clock to take your first drink rather than starting at 5 o'clock, you are likely to drink less.

Be aware of your drinking.

Think about whether you ever automatically drink out of routine (after a long day, for example). You may hardly be aware you are doing it, so the amount you drink over a week creeps up. Some people find it helpful to keep a diary to identify when and how much they are drinking.

Tip 16

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Tip 17

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Steer clear of rounds.

Think of a good reason for avoiding rounds, and let your friends know before you start drinking. For example - you're losing weight, you're saving up, or you have something important to do in the morning. Another popular idea is only taking a limited amount of money (and no bank cards) out with you. If you don't want to drink at all, you could offer to be the designated driver. This will help you stay in control of how much you're drinking.

Keep boredom at bay.

If you find yourself drinking to pass the time, finding other ways to keep yourself busy can help you drink less and feel good. Try learning a new skill or take on a new challenge. Spend time with family, friends or neighbours. Be more physically active. Walking is a great place to start, and by exploring your local area you may find new things to do. Doing something for someone else can also pass the time as well as making you feel good. For more ideas visit www.thelivewelldirectory.com

Tip 20

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Dinner only drinking.

A simple way to drink less and cut back on the calories is to wait until you eat before having a drink. Drinking with food slows down how fast you drink, as well as the rate that your body absorbs alcohol. If you're drinking wine, you could also try not having the bottle on the table - just pour one glass and put the bottle away. If you stop drinking when you finish eating you give your body more time to process the alcohol before you go to bed which means you'll also get a better night's sleep! Having water on the table to drink between alcoholic drinks also helps.

Tip 22

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Tip 23

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Tip 24

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Tip 25

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Tip 26

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Tip 27

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Keep less alcohol in the house.

If your house is always stocked up with alcohol you're more likely to drink it. Try buying less alcohol when you do the shopping and keep it out of sight at home to help avoid temptation.

Tip 29

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Tip 30

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Look for other ways to spend quality time with your friends and family.

Liverpool is a vibrant city with a fantastic selection of things to do, places to explore and exciting events that can take the focus away from alcohol. Next time you're planning to spend time with family and friends, check out www.visitliverpool.com for inspiration.

Give yourself an excuse to drink less.

Special occasions like birthdays, weddings and christenings are happy times when it's easy to get carried away, but giving yourself an excuse to drink less or leave early can help. Some good ways to do this include offering to be the designated driver or arranging something important for the following morning.

Tip 34

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Know the score - drink less enjoy more.

For many of us, cheering on our team is often accompanied by a few drinks. But when you're watching an afternoon's sport it's easy to overdo it, leaving those great sporting moments a distant blur. Pace yourself by alternating with non-alcoholic drinks. You could also try choosing a lower strength beer or lager.

Tip 36

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Don't spoil your night before it begins.

Merseyside Police are making sure that bars don't serve anyone that is drunk. Make sure your night doesn't get cut short by drinking less before you go out or waiting until you go out to have a drink. Find out more at www.drinklessenjoymore.co.uk

Tip 38

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Tip 41

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Don't save your drinks for the weekend.

Believe it or not, avoiding drinking during the week doesn't make a heavy weekend any better. The effects of drinking heavily are still bad for you. It's a better idea to try and drink less, more evenly across the week.

Slow down.

If you enjoy the taste of alcohol, try sipping it more slowly. You might want to try non-alcoholic or low alcohol drinks. The quality of these drinks are improving. Another way to drink less is to alternate alcoholic drinks with water.

Eat before you drink.

Eating a meal before you start drinking helps slow down how quickly your body absorbs alcohol. This helps you stay in control and less likely to crave junk later in the night. Alternate alcoholic drinks with water or a low sugar drink.

Double your chances.

How many times have you filled a partner's glass without asking? Or maybe they regularly have a glass of wine or a beer waiting for you when you get home from work? You could be encouraging each other to drink more than you would really like. When you live with your partner it's easy to adopt each other's habits, without realising it. Many people find that cutting down with your partner means you can make plans together to avoid drinking too much such as agreeing not to drink on certain days. You can keep each other motivated too!

Tip 46

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Try small bottles of wine.

An easy way to start drinking less is buying smaller bottles of wine. When you buy a full-size bottle of wine, there is always a temptation to finish the bottle. There is a much bigger selection of single serve bottles of wine nowadays which will help you keep a closer tab on what you are drinking without feeling like you're missing out.

Tip 48

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Tip 49

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Tip 50

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Think ahead.

If you are worried that friends or family will encourage you to drink more than you want to, be upfront about not wanting to drink too much. Popular reasons given include you're saving up, you're losing weight, or you have something important to do in the morning. If you don't want to drink at all, you could offer to be the designated driver.

Fact or fiction

Is red wine really healthy?
Are beer and wine safer to drink than spirits?

Find out the truth here
Health effects
of alcohol

Alcohol can affect your physical and mental health

Find out more here
Act now to reduce your drinking

You are drinking at a dangerous level, and this can lead to a whole range of serious health problems like:

  • High blood pressure, heart disease and stroke
  • Liver disease
  • Cancers
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Memory problems and brain damage
  • Alcohol dependence, or alcoholism

You need to cut down your drinking to lower your risk of harm. Help is available. Talk to your GP about your drinking. Your GP can refer you for support or you can directly contact Liverpool Community Alcohol Service. It's a free, friendly and confidential service for Liverpool residents:

Liverpool Community Alcohol Service

www.liverpoolalcoholservice.nhs.uk

0151 529 4504 (for Liverpool residents only)

At this level of drinking, you can experience alcohol withdrawal symptoms if you suddenly stop drinking. Talk to your GP or another medical professional as soon as possible.

Health effects of alcohol

Alcohol can affect your physical and mental health

Find out more here
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