6 pc of Flemish have alcohol problem

20th November 2007, Comments 0 comments

20 November 2007, BRUSSELS - On the occasion of Alcoholism Week Flemish Health Care Minister Steven Vanackere (Christian democrat) is earmarking EUR 730,000 for an alcohol action programme.

20 November 2007

BRUSSELS - On the occasion of Alcoholism Week Flemish Health Care Minister Steven Vanackere (Christian democrat) is earmarking EUR 730,000 for an alcohol action programme.

Doctor Ansoms, who has been preparing the plan, says that the situation among the young is giving cause for concern.  Binge drinking is a problem, also in Belgium.

Youngsters start drinking alcohol at a very young age, 12 or 13 years. Youngsters who start to drink early also have a greater change of becoming an alcoholic.

The Association for Alcohol and other Drug Problems, the VAD, is now using the popular video exchange website YouTube to promote its message.

Often alcoholism goes hand in hand with poverty. Dr Ansoms told the daily De Standaard that it is hard to solve a drinking problem if you are in financial trouble as well.

Belgians' Burgundian way of life can fuel an alcohol problem too. Many people who have dealt with their own problem say it's socially very difficult to refuse a drink.

Alcohol has also become more easily available in Belgium since the rise of the night shop.

The daily De Standaard reports that 5 percent of people in the EU have an alcohol problem. In Flanders the figure is higher, 6 percent. More men than women are in the alcohol danger zone.

Belgian GPs say ten percent of their patients have an alcohol problem, but only one in six people with a problem actually seeks professional help.

Fortunately, problematic drinking is no longer a big taboo and it is a lot easier for people to seek help nowadays.

Food for thought, a few facts on alcohol consumption in Belgium:

The average Belgian consumes some 8.8 litres of pure alcohol each year.

Alcohol consumption is falling.

Belgians are drinking more shorts and less beer.

8.4 percent of the Flemish drink alcohol each and every day.

People in the 55 to 74 age bracket have the highest daily intake of alcohol.

People with higher qualifications are more likely to drink.

In recent years drinking has become more popular among women.


[Copyright Flanders news 2007]

Subject: Belgian news

 

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