After the festive treats of the holiday season, Croydon residents are invited to kick-start a healthier New Year by taking the 31-day Dry January alcohol-free challenge.
There is a wealth of benefits to be had by signing up at www.DryJanuary.org.uk and giving your body a break from alcohol. You will sleep better, lose weight, have more energy – and save cash.
It is estimated that nearly one in six people living in Croydon are drinking at a level which increases the risk of damaging their health.
The charity Alcohol Concern offers a number of resources on its website to keep people motivated during their booze-free month. There is a Dry January app to help you stay on track, and a motivational poster you can print and tick off after each day, as well as information about alcohol and its effects on your health.
The national guidance on the recommended limits of alcohol was updated in 2016, and it now states that:
• the limits for both men and women are the same – which is to not drink more than 14 units a week, and spreading these units evenly over three or more days;
• a good way to cut down on the amount you are drinking is to have several drink-free days each week; and
• there is no safe level of alcohol.
For local advice on drinking alcohol safely and sensibly, residents can take a quick assessment at Croydon’s new health website – www.justbecroydon.org The site contains podcasts and videos on how to cut back on alcohol and signposts people where to seek support.
Councillor Louisa Woodley, cabinet member for families, health and social care
“We want our residents to live long and healthy lives. Starting 2017 in a state of alcohol-free bliss is a step in the right direction. January is the best time to give yourself a little break and a simple swap of alcoholic drinks for something softer has both short- and long-term benefits on your body – and in your pocket, too.”