An editorial in the Times Colonist, Sober Thought Needed on Alcohol Guidelines, details reaction to the new reports released from the Ottawa-based Centre on Substance Abuse and Addiction (CCSA). The suggestion is that serious issues are raised as the new guidelines come close to placing alcohol off limits, even in the most modest quantities. CCSA goes far beyond the other measures adopted in 20 other countries that report their guidelines. The guidelines need to be read with care.
Australia’s guidelines, published in 2020, cite 10 drinks a week as the recommended maximum, whereas Britain uses 14 drinks a week as the limit. The aim of the released and revised Australian guidelines to reduce health risks from drinking alcohol was to provide advice on the health risks so Australians can make informed decisions on alcohol consumption.
Also interesting is the statement in the Times Colonist article that alcohol, used sensibly, is also a source of pleasure to many. This is given no weight in the study from CCSA. There is understanding that an effort is underway for the CCSA to rework its numbers to make the absolute risks more clear.