Excessive drinking – as opposed to alcoholism in itself – is causing a plethora of health concerns amongst women, and the problems don’t just affect very young women either. Women over 30 are consuming alcohol more frequently than their younger counterparts and in some cases are drinking as much as men despite differing daily allowances¹.
Women generally are now the fastest growing demographic to consume alcohol to excess².
Illnesses such as cirrhosis – more commonly associated with older men – and cancers affecting the breast, mouth, liver and colorectal areas increase drastically where alcohol abuse is a problem³.
So what is excessive drinking or alcohol abuse?
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, excessive drinking can constitute consuming just half a bottle of wine every evening. It is of little wonder then that women are realising they may in fact have a problem – one that may not necessarily be an addiction.
But what is the solution?
According to Georgia Foster, leading clinical hypnotist and architect for the Drink Less Mind program (DLM), stopping altogether may not necessarily be the answer.
Originally from Australia but now based in London, Foster has noticed striking similarities between the countries’ robust drinking cultures and the worrying trend for women to drink too much.
And she’s not just referring to women in their 20s excessively drinking on Friday night; she’s also referring to women in their 30s and 40s, with children and jobs, who have come to rely on alcohol insalubriously.
“Polishing off a bottle of wine every day after work is as unhealthy as clean living Monday to Friday and then binging on 3 bottles of wine on a Friday night,” says Foster.
“Yet it is this kind of drinking that is ‘socially acceptable’ despite the serious mental, physical and social consequences it can have down the track.
“It’s about freeing yourself from your mind’s mistaken equation that alcohol equals reward for a tough day, consolation for a mistake made, or facilitator of confidence,” she says.
Foster created the DLM triggered by her own ‘socially conditioned’ drinking habits. Realising she had an unhealthy relationship with booze, she looked to the reasons why the relationship had developed and what could be done to address the problem.
Interestingly, the answer was not to stop drinking altogether.
“An unhealthy relationship with alcohol leading to binge or excessive drinking is not the same as being an alcoholic. This is a key initial distinction to make,” says Foster.
“In nearly every instance, alcoholics must stop drinking completely, but excessive drinkers require a different form of ‘treatment’ focused on self-awareness, breaking bad habits, and learning how to socialise without using alcohol as a crutch,” she says.
Through the DLM program, Foster has helped hundreds of women address their unhealthy relationships with alcohol and develop new approaches to stress and social situations; ones revolved around enjoyment, not regret, and ones that are less damaging to their health.
DLM takes place over 21 days and is an instantly accessible, fully downloadable, audio experience that teaches alcohol hypnosis techniques based on over 20 years of alcohol control research.
For more information about the Drink Less Mind Program visit the website: www.howtodrinkless.com
1. Page 37 of “Mortality rate of alcoholic liver disease and risk of hospitalization for alcoholic liver cirrhosis, alcoholic hepatitis and alcoholic liver failure in Australia between 1993 and 2005” http://ndri.curtin.edu.au/local/docs/pdf/publications/RJ740.pdf
2. In a consumption of alcohol study conducted by the ABS, it was found that women in the 55-64 year age group also had higher rates of drinking at risky levels than their younger counterparts in the 18-24 year age group. http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/by%20Subject/4125.0~Jan%202013~Main%20Features~Consumption%20of%20alcohol~3310
3. Page 6 of “Mortality rate of alcoholic liver disease and risk of hospitalization for alcoholic liver cirrhosis, alcoholic hepatitis and alcoholic liver failure in Australia between 1993 and 2005” http://www.fare.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/AERF-Final-Report-April-2006.pdf