How many units are in alcoholic drinks?

    Whether it's a glass of wine or a pint of beer, learn how the ABV percentage of alcohol in popular drinks translates to units of alcohol with our infographic.

    Ever wondered how many units of alcohol are in your favourite beverage? We've created an at-a-glance chart to show the alcohol units in different alcoholic drinks, so you can easily keep track of exactly how much you're drinking.

    What is a unit of alcohol?

    One unit is 10ml of pure alcohol. Because alcoholic drinks come in different strengths and sizes, units are a way to tell how strong a particular drink is. It’s not as simple as one drink, one unit – our infographic shows:

    • A glass of wine contains 2.3 units (175ml glass, 13% ABV)
    • A pint of beer contains 2.3 units (1 pint, 4% ABV)
    • A pint of cider contains 2.6 units (1 pint, 4.5% ABV)
    • A shot of spirits contains 1 unit (1 shot, 40% ABV)
    • A glass of champagne contains 1.5 units (125ml glass, 12% ABV)
    • An average bottle of alcopop contains 1.1 units (275ml bottle, 4% ABV)

    Read more about alcohol units on the Drink Aware website.

    What does ABV mean?

    Alcohol content is expressed as a percentage of the whole drink on the packaging. For example, a bottle of wine will display a percentage or number followed by 'ABV' (alcohol by volume) or the word 'vol' – so ‘13 ABV’ means that a drink contains 13% pure alcohol.

    How many alcohol units should I drink?

    The UK Chief Medical Officers recommend adults do not regularly drink more than 14 units per week. If you regularly drink as much as 14 units per week, it's best to spread your drinking evenly over three or more days. If you are concerned about your drinking, speak to your GP or visit the Drink Aware website.

    All unit figures given are averages and will vary depending on the strength and size of the alcoholic drink. Information from DrinkAware. For alcohol advice, including UK alcohol unit guidelines, information on how drink affects your health and much more, visit the DrinkAware website. Always drink responsibly and in moderation.

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    This page was published on 29 August 2018.

    All health content on bbcgoodfood.com is provided for general information only, and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other healthcare professional. If you have any concerns about your general health, you should contact your local healthcare provider. See our website terms and conditions for more information.

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