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UK Gov. Says Exercise Doesn’t Compensate for Binge Drinking

posted 10:19 PM EST, Thu November 26, 2009
UK Gov. Says Exercise Doesn’t Compensate for Binge Drinking © Photo Credit: Ben Matthews :::

Brits are making up for binge drinking with gym visits the next day – a practice the government says may help to burn those extra calories, but that won’t protect from cancers or organ damage.

A survey administered by the UK Department of Health suggests that 28% of people in Britain use exercise as a way to ‘make up’ for binge drinking the night before, primarily to burn off the calories ingested through alcohol.

Health officials stress that although alcohol is high in calories and that exercise can help people to retain a healthy weight, that exercise cannot minimize the many other harms of heavy drinking.

Nicolay Sorensen, of Alcohol Concern, commented on the survey findings by saying, “alcohol has its own special set of risk factors - damage to vital organs, increased chance of cancers and so on. No amount of time on the treadmill can reverse the effects of heavy drinking.”

The British government recommends that men not exceed 3 or 4 units of alcohol per day about a pint and a half of beer per day and that women not exceed 2 or 3 units daily.

Gilian Marron, Minister of the Health Department that ran the survey, warned of the dangers of chronic heavy drinking by saying, “the truth is, if you have a big night at the pub, you’re not going to compensate with a workout the following day. Damage from regularly drinking too much can slowly creep up and you won't see it until it's too late.”

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