Educ'alcool recommends low-risk drinking by the numbers: "2 . 3 . 4 . 5 . 0"

    MONTREAL, Jan. 16 /CNW Telbec/ - "2 . 3 . 4 . 5 . 0" sums up
Educ'alcool's recommendations for anyone seeking personal guidelines on
low-risk drinking. And it's a first in Québec.
    "With the release of our fifth Alcohol and Health report - this one on
what constitutes low-risk drinking - Educ'alcool fills both a gap and a need,"
says Hubert Sacy, Director General of Educ'alcool.
    "Of course," he continued, "similar information can be found in various
publications, most of them of a medical nature. But this is the first time
that standards have been set and broadly communicated in Québec. The gap has
effectively been filled."
    The need was obvious. Quebecers really are thirsting for knowledge! A
2007 Educ'alcool-CROP poll found that seven out of ten people said they wanted
to know more about how much alcohol they can drink without endangering their
health. Given all the studies constantly being done on the effects - both
positive and negative - of alcohol, it's not surprising that so many people
seek guidelines for low-risk drinking.

    2 . 3 . 4 . 5 . 0

    The formula is simple and easy to remember. It refers to the recommended
number of drinks and the difference is primarily sex-based.

    2: Women who want to drink responsibly - and for the health benefit after
menopause - should have no more than TWO drinks a day.
    3: Men who want to drink moderately - and for the health benefit after
the age of 40 - should have no more than THREE drinks a day.
    4: To avoid intoxication and the associated complications, women should
have no more than FOUR drinks on a single occasion.
    5: Men who wish to avoid intoxication and the associated complications
should have no more than FIVE drinks on a single occasion.
    0: A good habit. To avoid any kind of habituation or dependency, we
recommend that everyone - men and women - have NO alcoholic drinks at least
one day a week.

    And a reminder: If you are a woman of child-bearing age, Educ'alcool
recommends that you  do  not  drink  alcohol  from  the  time  you  decide  to
 become  pregnant,  or  if  you  think you might be pregnant.

    Individual vulnerability

    These recommendations are intended for the general public. However, as
the research shows  with increasing clarity, when it comes to alcohol, we are
not all born equal. The effects of alcohol can vary greatly from one person to
the next, which means that these guidelines are not necessarily good for
    Genetic heritage, weight and age are among the important factors we must
all consider when figuring out what "moderate drinking" means for us.

    Circumstantial vulnerability

    As the Educ'alcool publication points out, people can also be vulnerable
in other ways.
    For example, the low-risk drinking guidelines may not be valid for
someone who is taking medication. People on medication should be extra
cautious and check with their doctor or pharmacist to see whether alcohol is
    Also,  when  you  are  very  hungry,  tired  or  stressed,  you  should 
drink  less  than  is recommended in the guidelines.

    Other things to remember

    The publication concludes with a number of reminders:

    - Know what a "standard drink" is, whether it's beer, wine, cider,
      spirits, fortified wine or a premixed drink (cooler).
    - Be aware of how much is being poured and the alcohol percentage in what
      you're drinking, particularly given that the trend is to increase that
      percentage in various products.
    - Remember that drinking alcohol is inappropriate under certain

    Where to get the publication

    Low-risk drinking: 2 . 3 . 4 . 5 . 0 can now be downloaded directly from
the Educ'alcool website at Free copies may be ordered by
calling Educ'alcool at 1-888-ALCOOL1. They can also be obtained at a number of
hospitals, CLSCs and SAQ stores.

For further information:

For further information: Sarah-Emilie Bouchard, HKDP Communications and
Public Affairs, (514) 395-0375 ext. 229, Cell: (514) 250-7595,; Source: Educ'alcool, Hubert Sacy, Director General

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