LIFESTYLE

New Year, No Booze: Cut Back On Alcohol To Prevent Dementia, Health Officials Warn

29/12/2014 11:10 GMT | Updated 29/12/2014 11:59 GMT

As far as New Year's resolutions are concerned, cutting back on alcohol is up there with the most popular (hands up if you've promised to drink less next year? Yep we thought so).

But, chances are, you'll be back to that glass of wine (or five) before we can say 'vineyard'.

Now, public health officials have warned that purging your life of alcohol in 2015 could be more favourable than you think - with a reduced risk of dementia being a key benefit.

alcohol

England's top dementia doctor, Professor Alistair Burns, said most studies suggested that drinking large amounts of alcohol increases the risk of dementia in later life.

Prof Burns said: "The New Year is the perfect chance for us all to consider our lifestyles and think if there is anything we can improve or change to increase our healthiness - both physical and mental.

"While stopping drinking altogether isn't a reality for many people, cutting down can make a huge difference.

"However, it can be very easy for one glass to lead to two and then to a bottle and this can seriously increase your risk of developing dementia in later life along with many other health conditions."

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NHS guidelines state that men should not regularly drink more than three to four units per day and women should avoid regularly drinking more than two to three units per day.

One unit is roughly equivalent to half a beer or a small glass of wine.

Currently 375,000 people in England have a diagnosis of dementia out of the 683,000 estimated to have the condition.

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Early Symptoms of Dementia

NHS England and Prime Minister David Cameron have stated that their ambition is for two thirds of people with dementia to have a diagnosis and post diagnostic support by 2015.

It leaves a gap of 80,000 people who still need to be identified.