Media and publishing staff are Britain's biggest drinkers

A new government survey has found that people working in the media and publishing industry are Britain’s heaviest drinkers, consuming more than double the recommended weekly limit.

The Department of Health survey found media industry workers drank an average of 44 units of alcohol a week.

Almost a third said they monitored their drinking. But a similar number of respondents said they sometimes felt pressurised to drink by their colleagues.

Public health minister Dawn Primarolo said: “After-work drinks are often part of working life. It’s tempting to just go for a swift one, even when you know your body needs a rest. But, one can quickly turn into many.

Chris Sorek, chief executive of the independent charity The Drinkaware Trust, added: “After a hectic day at work it’s tempting to unwind with a few drinks but even a couple of large glasses of wine drunk regularly can lead to further stress and serious health conditions including liver disease and depression.

“It’s crucial that people know how alcohol affects them and can make educated decisions about how much they’re drinking.

“Sticking to unit guidelines, having two alcohol-free days a week and taking regular exercise can reduce the health risks and combat stress.”

The Department of Health poll found teachers and transport workers were the most moderate drinkers, consuming an average of 24 units a week.

But even that figure is above the NHS recommended limit that women do not regularly drink more than two to three units a day and is at the maximum three to four units recommended for men.

IT workers drank an average of 34 units a week, followed by service sector workers at 33 units and people in finance, insurance and real estate at 29 units.

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