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Go Easy on the Booze During the Holidays

Drink in moderation at all those celebratory gatherings

SUNDAY, Dec. 15, 2002 (HealthDayNews) -- It's fine to hoist a glass of rum and eggnog or champagne to toast the festive season, but don't get carried away with your celebratory drinking over the holidays.

University of Michigan emergency physicians remind you that even moderate drinking may impair your judgment and result in serious safety and health problems.

Alcohol affects the brain and central nervous system, and impairs your ability to function. At the same time, alcohol can give you a feeling of self-confidence or denial that you're being seriously affected by the alcohol.

There's more. Alcohol kills brain cells and can cause memory loss, emotional disturbances, loss of coordination and brain damage. Long-term alcohol abuse can lead to liver cirrhosis and throat, mouth, esophagus, stomach and liver cancers.

Then there's the obvious danger of impaired driving. Research shows that people's driving abilities are actually impaired even when they're still below the legal limit for intoxication.

The best way to protect yourself from alcohol-related health and safety risks is to avoid drinking or drink in moderation.

More information

The University of Michigan has more about drinking in moderation.

SOURCE: University of Michigan, news release, December 2002
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