Mobile phone to keep track of your drink limits

December 1st, 2009 - 6:34 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 1 (IANS) Britons can now keep a tab on how much alcohol they are drinking, courtesy of a free smart phone application.
The free iPhone application was launched by public health minister Gillian Merron Monday as the festive party season gets under way.

The device which can be downloaded onto smart phones like the iPhone, will allow users to see how many units of alcohol there are in their drink, keep a running total of their consumption and get personalised feedback on their drinking habits.

Studies have shown that people underestimate how much alcohol they have drunk on a night out and may exceed the safe limits without realising it.

Recommended limits are two to three units a day for women - the equivalent of one medium to large glass of wine - and three to four units a day for men - a large glass to a glass and a half, or two pints of beer - with at least two alcohol-free days a week.

Drink-driving during the festive season is a major public health concern in Britain.

The number of people killed from drinking and driving fell from 560 in 2006 to 406 in 2007 and those seriously injured from 1,970 to 1,760 during the same period.

But an increase in less serious incidents saw the total number of drink and driving deaths and injuries rise by 220 cases a year to 9,620 - a two percent increase.

Merron said: “It is all too easy to lose track of how much you drink. So as the festive parties start to build up, this innovative tool will help people keep tabs on their drinking - wherever they are.”

Sticking within the recommended limits also means people can reduce the risk of serious conditions such as mouth cancer and strokes.

The app is available from iTunes and www.nhs.uk .

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