In the state of Pennsylvania it is legal for you to consume alcohol if you are 21 years of age or older. Please note however that in accordance with Lackawanna College's Alcohol Policy, no student, regardless of age, is permitted to consume and/or possess alcoholic beverages on the College premises or at College sponsored events.
If you are of age to drink and are in a situation where alcohol is permitted it is important that you know the damaging effects that alcohol can have on your health so that you can make an informed decision to drink.
Alcohol, or ethyl alcohol (ethanol), refers to the intoxicating ingredient found in wine, beer and hard liquor. Beer, wine and other liquor contain different amounts of alcohol. The amount of alcohol in distilled liquor is known as proof. Proof refers to the amount of alcohol in the liquor; for example, 100 proof liquor contains 50% alcohol, 40 proof liquor contains 20% alcohol, and so on. Traditional wine has approximately 8-14% alcohol, while regular beer has 4-6% alcohol.
Moderate or “low-risk” drinking: Research shows that people who drink moderately may be less likely to experience an alcohol use disorder. First of all click here to review what constitutes a standard drink?
Moderate drinking amounts vary according to gender due to the general differences in body type and other physiological factors. The amounts that constitute moderate drinking are as follows:
Men: No more than 4 drinks on any single day & no more than 14 drinks per week
Women:No more than 3 drinks on any single day & no more than 7 drinks per week
To stay at low risk for an Alcohol Use Disorder, you must keep within both the single-day and weekly limits.
Even within these limits, you can have problems if you drink too quickly or have other health issues.
To keep your risk for problems low, make sure you: Drink slowly & Eat enough while drinking
Certain people should avoid alcohol completely, including those who:
- Plan to drive a vehicle or operate machinery
- Take medications that interact with alcohol
- Have a medical condition that alcohol can aggravate
- Are pregnant or trying to become pregnant
National Institute of Alcohol & Alcoholism
What is Binge Drinking?
This typically happens when men consume 5 or more drinks, and when women consume 4 or more drinks, in about 2 hours."
Binge Drinking has been found to be associated with the following health risks/concerns
(Center for Disease Control, 2012)
- Unintentional injuries (e.g., car crashes, falls, burns, drowning)
- Intentional injuries (e.g., firearm injuries, sexual assault, domestic violence)
- Alcohol poisoning
- Sexually transmitted diseases
- Unintended pregnancy
- Children born with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders
- High blood pressure, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases
- Liver disease
- Neurological damage
- Sexual dysfunction, and
- Poor control of diabetes.
What does 1 Drink really mean?
Fill this infamous Red Cup with an alcoholic drink and it is more than one standard drink.
The typical red cup is 18 oz (previously 16 oz. but many stores are phasing out 16 oz. cups in favor of these larger versions.)
Now let’s look at how many standard drinks this equals if alcohol is involved:
If someone drinks:
3 Red Cups of beer = around 4.5 to 7 alcohol drinks
1 Red Cup of a mixed drink that is ½ liquor / 1/2 juice =6 drinks
This is Binge Drinking and can lead to many problems .… legally, medically, socially & emotionally
Think before you grab that drink!
Effects of Alcohol on your Brain