Booze. UH! What is it good for? Apparently, Absolutely Nothing. Say it Again.

My friend called me yesterday to discuss his doctor’s appointment. He hadn’t been in a while and his regular doctor was replaced by another gentleman. But he decided it was time for a check-up nevertheless.

They talked about the normal stuff. He was asked about smoking, his family’s medical history, eating habits, etc.

How much alcohol do you consume a week?

About 10 beers a week.

You really have to stop that. Try and stick with 2 a week.

What’s the main worry?

Your liver.

We discussed this notion over the phone. When you live in a place like Greenpoint and you compare yourself to the plethora of inebriated Polish men, it’s easy to get the idea that you don’t drink that much. Actually, these blokes can convince you to drink more and you’re certain you’ll be just fine. Basically, it follows that idea that if someone else is consuming more booze, and you’re not the winner of said consumption contest, you’re A-OK.

My friend decided it was time to stay in a bit more and maybe forgo the beer or two he’d usually have in evening. Still, the conversation begged the curious question; How much alcohol is too much?

If anyone is reading this and they would kindly take a minute to discuss their personal life with me (heh, sorry.) that would be great. Because, I, too, am curious.

How much do you drink a week? And what is it you drink? And if you’re feeling really generous, how long have you been drinking said amount?

If I have asked this before, I apologize in advance. I just can’t remember every post after 4 years.

33 Comments

  1. 10 per week is too much?!? I’d get a second opinion.
    I drink 1-2 per day on average, a little more if I go out.

    Reply

  2. I rarely drink at home. Occasionally we’ll have a bottle of wine with a nice dinner, and I’ll occasionally go out to have a drink. So I’d have to say that I have about 8-10 drinks a month (at most). When I drink, I usually have three or four, but I don’t go out that often. I’ll drink more during rugby season (after match socials and during tournaments), and the holiday season is festive. Having kids definitely changes your lifestyle.

    Reply

  3. One or two drinks a month. Wooo-hoooo, I’m a wild man.

    Reply

  4. On average, 2 an evening. Usually wine. I’ve been doing so since SF. Prior that (in DC) it was far less, maybe 5 drinks a week, on average. Prior THAT (NYC, phase 1) it was even less.

    So yeah, we all have Michele to blame.

    I just saw Schmitty do a couple shots tequila, actually. As he said, “moowwwwww!”

    Translation: “It’s 5PM in some litter box, some place. And if it ain’t, it will be!”

    Reply

  5. You all have me to blame? You’re out of your mind.

    Reply

  6. 10 beers bad for your liver? that’s ludicrous. I could see if he was conerning about weight/calories since beer is pretty high in calories, but knocking it down to 2 a week because of your liver? That’s just insane. What happenned to the “a glass of red wine” a night golden rule? That equates to 7 a week, not 2.

    My consumpation fluctuates, as low as 2-3 but I rarely go over 10 a week. But one thing I have noticed is that when I know I’m going to be drinking a good amount at shows or hanging out at a bar. I only drink Bud, in a bottle, much to the chagrin of my friends. And I have a few reasons why:
    1) goes down easy
    2) it’s pretty light & I don’t feel heavy, bloated, & at times sick like I would if I drank 4-5 Bass from the tap in a sitting
    3) I rarely ever get a hangover (for some reason I get serious hangovers over real hoppy beers like microbrews, pale ales, & such. sometime even I have only one – damn you Victory Golden Monkey! Damn you!!)
    4) it’s cheap

    Reply

  7. I gotta admit, the drunk in me thought 10 beers a week was pretty OK. Then again, I don’t drink beer, usually. Wine on the other hand. Although, I have cut down drastically over the last month or so. I don’t want to injure my baby.
    OK, that was a joke. I am just cutting down. No babies.

    Yet.

    Reply

  8. 20 a month maybe, unfortunaley they’re in one sitting hehehe. it takes 29-30 days to recover!

    Reply

  9. We drink wine every evening while cooking/eating dinner. I’d say about 1-2 (but closer to 2) glasses a night. I guess that equals about 10-14 glasses a week. Sounds bad when I put it that way, but I always thought a glass of red wine a day was good for you! Don’t know, but it definitely doesn’t FEEL like I’m hurting the liver. 2 drinks a week sounds kind of ridiculous to me…

    Reply

  10. john – i’m with you on hops being pure evil (but oh how they cut through spicy indian curries!) and causing untold pain. my simple beers are miller lite and amstel light (they spell ‘lite’ wrong because they’re Dutch!)

    I agree with becca that a glass or two of wine a night is probably healthy if you’re no t sporting one of the heps.

    Reply

  11. Re: the wine thing, apparently you can get the same benefits drinking grape juice. So I guess our excuse for drinking wine every night with dinner was ruined by the non-alcoholic grape people. Those bastards.

    Reply

  12. if something akin to diabetic shock could be developed from the way one consumes alcohol, that’d probably be me. I don’t drink every day, sometimes not all week then I have 2-7 drinks, usually wine or hard liquor. My intake varies with where i work (that’s terrible ha!) like internet companies and now – working for an internet WINE company (working late often involves opening a bottl e among us and enjoying a glass or two) – you can see the rub. My average now is 0-2 on a week night that isn’t “out” and 3-6 when i am. I’m starting to really get back into this wine thing, which I hadn’t been into for years. (my dad has a wine cellar and i’ve been drinking wine with parental approval since i was 7 – evil french and irish blood)

    i backed off it when my heartburn was bad but now i’m much better. mmmm yay

    Reply

  13. Wow – good question. I drink red wine 4-5 times per week. Usually 1/2 a bottle (so 2-3 glasses) in the evening. That’s probably a bit excessive, but I don’t care. I drink beer if and when I go out and it’s anywhere between 3 and 12, depending on where we are and what we’re doing.

    Reply

  14. Baby doll, you have a long way to go before most of my friends call that excessive. :]

    Reply

  15. 10 drinks a week too much + 2 good ‘for your liver’ is ludicrous. how many doctors say ‘a glass of red wine a night is good for your heart’ ? and that’s 3x more alcohol than that doctor claims.

    toby- gerwertraminers and reislings cut through curry and spice like nothing else.

    beer is super bad for you – not your liver, but the triglicerides and trans fatty acids.

    Reply

  16. Oh, and according to Toby, Nessa, it’s safe to say that the amount of booze you drink can safely be blamed on me. :]

    Reply

  17. oh christ. seems i offended michele. i can’t make a joke sometimes.

    Reply

  18. Now, now, little Joe. I, too, was joking. You need a snack or something. Maybe a brownie?

    Reply

  19. There are trans fats in beer?

    Reply

  20. Seriously, though, I know there are people reading this who think 10 drinks a week is totally insane and unbelievably bad for you. Hell, 10 drinks a year is a lot for some. Knowing there are people who feel this way, I kinda want them to step up and explain why it’s bad. I am actually curious.

    Reply

  21. I average zero drinks a day x zero drinks a week which equals a big fat zero – I’m just a total alcoholic loser.

    Reply

  22. i really cant imagine that 10/wk. is bad for you. but i imagine its bad to drink the majority of those in one night, which is what i tend to do.

    i definately agree that if its going to be a 6+ night I need to stick with either bud or just red wine, and NEVER switch between the two.

    Reply

  23. Is it wrong that I really could use a glass of wine right now?

    Reply

  24. I like to eat an egg with every drink I take. That way my heart and my liver get equal mileage.

    Reply

  25. is it wrong that i just had a glass of wine?

    yeah, there are lots of trans fats and triglycerides in beer. that’s why people get the beer bellies from beer and not from wine or clear alochols. (i think the whiskey weight is from sugar calories, not from bad stuff, but i could be wrong)

    Reply

  26. I can’t find any info stating that trans fats are present in beer. In fact, there are supposedly zero fats. The malitol surely triggers specific blood sugar spikes, but the fats created are all your own—from everything I can find, anyway.

    Reply

  27. Yeah, I am thinking that beer is trans-fat free, too.

    Reply

  28. beer drinkers, on the other hand…

    chock full.

    Reply

  29. Sometimes i think it’s what you don’t do during the course of drinking those 10 beers that really effects your health… like not eating dinner and having a beer instead, or drinking more alcohol than water in a day. I like to think that as long as i balance out my drinking with food, water, and a few walks around the block then i’ll be fine. Or am i just in denial ?

    Reply

  30. I can’t help but think that the doc’s recommendation is part puritan value judgement. I mean, ten drinks a week for life is a lot more than ten drinks a week for a couple of years of young adulthood. Your financial adviser might also suggest that ten drinks/week may be excessive. If you’re drinking socially, that’s a lot of money (what does a beer in a bar in Greenpoint cost? $4? $5? At $4 a drink, that could be $2000 a year. It’s a shame that socializing (which what we really want to do, not drink) can cost so much. Those are after-tax dollars, too, which means you have to earn/work how much $ just make the trip home from the office?

    Reply

  31. After last night, I think I might knock it back (as it were) to zero for awhile.

    Reply

  32. Hey there – I went to the doctor recently, explained to him that i drink between 2 and 4 drinks per night, and he had no problem with that (and he doesn’t drink at all). He gave me antibiotics, and said to keep it to 1 drink while on the pills, since the liver metabolizes both alchohol and antibiotics. he also said that he was happy about my weight (thankfully), and the overweightedness was a much bigger problem these days than alcohol consumption.

    Remember, good old Mickey Mantle mad it to 65 before he died from liver problems, and he drank over a bottle of booze a day for more than 40 years.

    So: skinny and drunk, good. fat and sober bad ;)

    btw, i rarely post to anything online, but being half in the bag, i figured this was kinda topical…

    Reply

  33. keith, I love that the one time you left a comment you did so on the post about booze and you did so while drunk. Truly awesome. :] Can’t wait to share a beverage or 7 with you in Boston.

    Reply

Leave a Reply