Middle-class women are drinking more alcohol than they realise because of larger wine glasses, and the more you earn, the more you drink – with those in higher income groups consuming 30 per cent more alcohol than the working classes.
The alarming figures came to light after revision of consumption calculations because of the trend towards larger wine glasses. It also means that up to a third of female are consuming alcohol beyond safe limits every week – much higher than previous estimates.
The report, by the National Statistics in UK, shows that millions who thought they were sticking within safe limits are exceeding them and leaving themselves at higher risk of liver disease and certain types of cancer.
The report found that those in managerial and professional jobs drink 15.1 units a week, against 11.6 for those in routine and manual occupations. Those in the very highest income brackets have even more.
Female bosses of small businesses are drinking 10.1 units a week – up from the previous 5.5 units estimate.
The new calculations reveal the average woman drinks 9.0 units a week, compared to 6.2 units under the old method. Men are drinking 18.7 units a week, compared to 14.8 as previously thought. Overall, people are drinking a third more than they thought, and the gap between men and women is reducing.
Source: National Statistics, UK