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A smart card system could help consumers keep track of their alcohol consumption – and help them drink less. Flickr/Mr Kael

Tap and go: smart cards could change the culture of booze

We all know that too much booze is bad for our health. Alcohol has been linked to 60 different medical conditions and almost 3,500 deaths a year in Australia, mostly from long-term alcohol abuse, accidents…
Booze won’t kill your brain cells but it can still harm your brain. Image from shutterstock.com

Monday’s medical myth: alcohol kills brain cells

Do you ever wake up with a raging hangover and picture the row of brain cells that you suspect have have started to decay? Or wonder whether that final glass of wine was too much for those tiny cells…
Efforts to reduce young people’s reliance on alcohol face a huge obstacle in the form of alcohol advertising. Lala Roe

Advertising’s role in how young people interact with alcohol

The most recent guidelines on appropriate alcohol consumption from the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) are a hard sell to a hard-drinking public. And this is despite growing concerns…
In decisions about alcohol policy, the effects on others, and not just on the drinker, need to be taken into account. Gaby Av

My drinking, your problem: alcohol hurts non-drinkers too

Drinking a lot of alcohol is bad for the drinker’s health, both in the short and in the long run. But drinking often affects others adversely, too. This is well recognised for drink driving, and once the…
The increasing liberalisation of alcohol normalises drinking and consumption becomes enmeshed in the daily fabric of life. Image from shutterstock.com

Social acceptance of alcohol allows us to ignore its harms

Most of us forget that alcohol is a drug so when asked to name drug-related problems, we tend to think of illegal drugs such as cannabis or heroin. But most of us drink, and drinking is an accompaniment…
Wine became popular in Australia in the 1960s, which led to the invention of the wine cask. Flickr/Johnsyweb

A brief history of alcohol consumption in Australia

Although most Australians would probably say we’ve always been a heavy-drinking nation, the consumption of alcohol has followed a roller coaster curve since European invasion. Alcohol consumption in Australia…

Binge drinking might be in your genes

A particular gene is responsible for how likely a person is to binge drink. A variation of the RASGRF-2 gene gives people…
Alcohol is responsible for more drug treatments than any other substance. AAP/Melanie Foster

Alcohol is half the problem for substance abusers

Alcohol continues to account for nearly half of government-funded substance abuse treatment in Australia. A report from the…
Australians are drinking and smoking less but gaining weight, a survey found. http://www.flickr.com/photos/sorais

Drinking, smoking down but obesity rates up

Australians are drinking and smoking less but putting on weight like never before, a national survey by the Australian Bureau…
A sign outside an Aboriginal community near Darwin, noting the ban on consuming alcohol in the area. AAP/Xavier La Canna

New singers, old songs: alcohol bans in Aboriginal communities

The newly elected conservative governments in Queensland and the Northern Territory have opened the way to relaxing laws restricting access to alcohol in Aboriginal communities. In Queensland, a number…

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