Healthy men up to age 65: No more than 14 drinks per week and no more than 4 drinks on a single occasion.

Healthy women of all ages and men over 65: No more than 7 drinks per week and no more than 3 drinks on a single occasion.

You should stop drinking if:

  • You have tried to cut down before but have not been successful.

  • You suffer from morning shakes after a heavy drinking period.

  • You have high blood pressure, are pregnant, or you have liver disease.

  • You are taking medicine that reacts with alcohol.

  • You have been drinking at low-risk levels most of the time.

  • You do not suffer from early morning shakes.

  • You would like to drink at low-risk levels.

Note that you should choose low-risk drinking only if all three apply to you and you do not have medications or conditions that would be aggravated by alcohol.



High-risk drinking may lead to social, legal, medical, domestic, job and financial problems.  It may also cut your lifespan and lead to accidents and death from drunken driving.


Alcohol dependence. Memory loss.


Aggressive, irrational behavior.  Arguments. Violence. Accidents. Depression. Nervousness.


Premature aging.


Cancer of throat and mouth.


Weakness of heart muscle. Heart Failure. Anemia. Impaired blood clotting. Breast cancer.


Frequent colds. Reduced resistance to infection. Increased risk of pneumonia.


Vitamin deficiency. Bleeding. Severe inflammation of the stomach. Vomiting. Diarrhea. Malnutrition.


Liver Damage.


Trembling hands. Tingling fingers. Numbness. Painful nerves.


Inflammation of the pancreas.


In men: Impaired sexual performance.

In women: Risk of giving birth to low birth weight babies and babies with intellectual or developmental disabilities.


Impaired sensation leading to falls.


Numb, tingling toes. Painful nerves.


  • Set a drinking goal and stick to it

  • Keep track of how much you drink

  • Get support

  • Avoid “triggers” and plan ahead how to handle urges

  • Learn to say “NO” when you don’t want to drink

  • Don’t give up

Talk to your physician about drinking concerns. He/she can help you make decisions based on your individual situation and risk factors.

There are times when even one or two drinks can be too much.

For example:

  • When driving or operating machinery

  • When pregnant or breastfeeding

  • When taking certain medications

  • If you have certain medical conditions

  • If you cannot control your drinking