An alcohol support charity based in Dumbarton is backing a national campaign calling on people who enjoy a pint at the weekend or a glass of wine after work to keep count of their units.

The ‘Count 14’ campaign aims to raise awareness and understanding of low-risk drinking guidelines and the health risks of regularly over-indulging.

In 2016 the chief medical officer for Scotland issued new low-risk drinking guidelines advising no more than 14 units of alcohol per week for both men and women – previously it had been 21 units for men and 14 for women.

Mags Mackenzie, chief executive of Dumbarton Area Council on Alcohol (DACA), told the Reporter: “Although the drinking guidelines were changed back in 2016, there is still confusion over the reasons for the change and how to measure alcoholic drinks in units.

“The low-risk drinking guidelines were changed to reflect the scientific evidence of the health harms of alcohol, specifically that the risks from cancer start with any regular level of drinking and increase with the amount drunk.

“The guidelines are in units but there is often confusion over what this means in terms of pints, glasses and measures.

“This new campaign has simple, easy-to-remember messaging which will help people to keep count of their weekly drinking and stay safe.”

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The campaign will run across national TV, radio and print media, and publicity materials will be available in local GP surgeries and health centres.

In advance of the campaign launch on March 11, DACA took their alcohol education roadshow along to a local event focusing on health and wellness.

Mags added: “People were surprised to find out how many units are in their evening glass of wine or cocktail.

“When people pour drinks at home, they’re generally not sticking to the weights and measures they’d get in a pub.

"Free pouring is notoriously difficult to judge, particularly with some of the large wine glasses and tumblers that are trendy now.

“We’re handing out unit cups for people to use at home - so that they can make informed choices, and not leave themselves vulnerable to increased health harms, including cancer, heart disease, liver disease, depression and anxiety.

“As well as our team of counsellors, we now have two specialist therapists providing a holistic health service for people who want to cut back on their drinking. So if you would like some advice please give us a call”

To learn more about the campaign visit from March 11, 2019.

For more information about the support available at DACA contact 01389 731456 or 0141 9520881.