By The Conversation on
Alcohol: why do we drink it? People have been consuming alcohol for at least 10,000 years. And when drinking water was rather risky, alcohol seemed a much safer bet. Amaldus of Villanova, a 14th-century monk, even wrote that alcohol “prolongs life, clears away ill humors, revives the heart and maintains youth”.
Today people will give you many reasons for their decision to drink and most of these reflect the effects it has on mind and brain. But before you get too sozzled, one thing is for sure: it is certainly not a safer, healthier bet than water.
1. It tastes nice
It depends on what you are drinking (some drinks like alcopops contain more sugar) and people obviously have different taste preferences. The fact that ethanol is created from...
By ABC Life on
Most Australian adults will have at least an occasional drink and about half of us are regular drinkers.
But it's easy to underestimate the health impacts, and experts believe there is too much risky drinking.
What is alcohol?
The alcohol in drinks is called ethanol (also known as ethyl alcohol). It is made from sugars in grains, fruits and vegetables.
It can be produced in various strengths:
- 5 per cent (full-strength beer and cider)
- 12-14 per cent (wine)
- 18 per cent (fortified wines like port or sherry)
- 37-40 per cent (spirits like vodka, whisky and gin)
In recent years, the strength of both white and red wines has increased.
What is a standard drink?
A standard drink is one that contains 10 grams of alcohol.
The size will vary,...
By ABC Life / By Joanna Khan on