Two thirds of women in Hampstead drink more than safe daily limit of alcohol
PUBLISHED: 13:00 06 June 2013
Nearly two thirds of women in Hampstead are drinking more than the recommended daily allowance of alcohol.
According to research, 66 per cent of women in NW3 are twice as likely as average to drink more than the limit of three units a day - the equivalent of a 175ml glass of wine.
The statistics suggest wealthy women living in the country’s most expensive post codes are more likely to have a drink problem than anywhere else.
Other areas where women drink more than the daily recommended amount were Knightsbridge and Esher in Surrey, both 66 per cent, and Cheam at 42 per cent.
The research, which was carried out by analytics firm CICA and published in the Sunday Times last week, comes on the back of other studies which revealed middle class professionals who consume alcohol at home are the biggest problem drinkers.
Health professionals have raised concerns over the issue, claiming this social group are at risk of as many health problems as those who binge drink at the weekend.
But members of Hampstead Women’s Club said they were shocked the number of women drinking more than the safe limit in NW3 was so high.
Shoba George, from the group, said: “That really surprises me. I imagine it’s hard to drink when you have children around which most of us do.
“You wouldn’t be able to engage properly. The only way you would be able to is if you have help.
“I wouldn’t say my friends fit into that group.”
Campaigning charity Alcohol Concern said it was hard to analyse trends in London because most boroughs have both very affluent and very poor areas, but generally wealthier people are drinking more.
But the charity also said these groups were less likely to suffer the ill effects of excessive alcohol consumption because they are masked by other factors, including a better diet and better access to health care.
Director Emily Robinson said: “Many think that alcohol misuse is only a problem for binge drinking youngsters, but a ‘harm map’ by charity Alcohol Concern shows it’s the older, often middle class, drinker who are costing the NHS most.
“We also know that women in professional or managerial roles are drinking a lot more than women doing manual jobs.
“It’s not surprising then that two of London’s most affluent neighbourhoods have high levels of women drinking over safe limits.
“Many see a glass of wine as the answer to a stressful day and think nothing of drinking most nights.
“But, drinking too much, too often, stores up future health problems and it’s much easier than many people realise to go over recommended limits.”
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