A new study led by a University of Victoria research student has found that the average drinker consumes a large amount of calories via alcohol everyday.
Adam Sherk, a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Victoria’s Canadian Institute for Substance Use Research (CISUR) recently published his team’s research in the Canadian Journal of Dietetic Practice and Research.
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According to the study, the average Canadian drinker ingests 250 calories through alcohol everyday. That’s 11% of their daily estimated energy requirement.
“That’s like eating an extra bag of chips every day,” explained Sherk in a statement.
“If we look at binge drinking, or having something like four or five drinks on one occasion, it’s actually closer to 550 calories, which is about 25% of the recommended daily caloric intake. That’s the equivalent of a double cheeseburger with all the fixings.”
Sherk and his co-authors conclude their paper with a call for nutritional labelling on all alcohol containers. At the moment, alcoholic beverages are not required to have such labelling, unlike other food and drinks.
“Given that the updated Canada Food Guide specifically highlights the importance of cutting back on sugary drinks, including alcohol, we think nutritional labels would be valuable,” says Sherk.
“Labels could also be used to communicate information about alcohol’s other health risks, including cancer, stroke and heart disease, or details about Canada’s Low Risk Drinking Guidelines.”