What is alcohol?
What is alcohol?
- A legal, sedative drug which changes the way we feel
- Pure alcohol is a colourless, odourless and inflammable fluid
- Alcohol as a drug does not contain any nutrients for the body.
- Alcoholic beverages have been used in many societies for many purposes.
- Alcohol is a major economic commodity that is associated with substantial governmental tax receipts and considerable consumer expenditure.
- The EU is considered the centre of the global alcohol industry, acting as both the largest market and the major producer of alcoholic drinks.
- Excise duty from the sale of alcohol in Ireland in 2011 was €829.3 million
- The estimated yield from VAT on alcohol in Ireland in 2011 was approximately €1 billion
- Expenditure on alcohol marketing by the alcohol industry in 2008 was €82 million (Nielsen Media research), up €13 million on the previous year.
Alcohol & Pleasure
- The fact that alcohol improves the drinkers mood in the short term is an important reason why many people drink and that mood change can be regulated according to the amount consumed.
- Alcoholic beverages are used for their mood-changing properties. The more you drink the more parts of your brain become numbed from the sedative drug-alcohol.
- As the alcohol moves quickly to the brain it acts like an anaesthetic to the various parts. First affected is the frontal lobe with immediate effects of increased enjoyment, euphoria, happiness, and the general expression of positive moods.
- These feelings are experienced more strongly in groups than when drinking alone and very much influenced by expectations. (Hull et al.,2004)
The first thing to be “switched off “or “depressed” are inhibitions
- The good news is that this can make you more relaxed
- The bad news is that it can take away your judgment.
- This is why people risk unprotected sex, pick fights or become violent
- Drinkers’ expectances of positive outcomes from drinking are associated with increasing consumption levels.
Hull, J.G. and Stone, L.B. (2004). Alcohol and self-regulation. In Eds R.F. Baumeister and K.D. Vohs. Handbook of self-regulation, pp 466-491. London: the Guilford Press.