Drinking alcohol is a personal choice; however, there are short and long-term health risks associated with drinking alcohol. Canada's Low-Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines are available to help you make informed decisions when choosing to drink alcohol. Follow these guidelines to reduce your risk of long-term health effects, injury, and harm from drinking alcohol.

graphic indicating recommended serving sizes for various types of alcohol

Reduce your long-term health risks by drinking no more than:

  • 10 drinks a week for women, with no more than two drinks a day most days
  • 15 drinks a week for men, with no more than three drinks a day most days
  • Plan non-drinking days every week to avoid developing a habit

Drinking alcohol is a known cause of cancer. To reduce your risk of cancer, follow these cancer-specific guidelines.

For women who are pregnant, planning on becoming pregnant, or are breastfeeding, the safest choice is to drink no alcohol at all. Find out more about how alcohol affects women differently than it affects men.

Youth and teens should delay their drinking as it can harm the way the body and brain develops. Parents and caregivers can find practical tips here for having open and meaningful conversations about alcohol with their child.

Some more tips when drinking alcohol include:

  • Set limits for yourself before each drinking occasion
  • Drink slowly. Have no more than two drinks in any three hours
  • For every drink of alcohol, have a non-alcoholic drink
  • Eat before and while you are drinking
  • Always consider your age, weight and health problems that might suggest lower limits

Teachers can find in-classroom teaching resources about alcohol here.

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