A 2012 report by the Health Research Board (HRB) found that less than 1 in 10 people can correctly identify the number of standard drinks in different measures when asked. Getting the facts about standard drinks is a good place to start to understand your drinking.
A standard drink is a measure of alcohol. In Ireland, one standard drink contains 10 grams of pure alcohol, taking the average person about one hour to process although this will vary from person to person. The number of standard drinks is based on the size of the drink and its alcohol strength, usually shown on labels as alcohol by volume (%ABV). You'll see from the graphic above that common examples include a half pint of beer, small glass of wine and pub measure of spirits. All are based on average strength drinks - 4.5% lager, 12.5% wine and 40% spirits.
No. This is a common source of confusion, particularly on labelling, but it is important to note they are not the same. One UK unit contains 8 grams of pure alcohol, compared to 10 grams in one Irish standard drink. Alcohol guidelines are typically set by the Department of Health in each country, so try to keep this in mind if you see unit content displayed on a can or bottle label and follow the guidance for Ireland.
Above all, staying within the HSE low-risk guidelines for alcohol consumption is recommended to reduces risks to your health and wellbeing.