HEALTH bosses are urging drinkers to cut down or or even give up the booze this month.

In the wake of the Christmas and New Year festivities, they are advising people to use alcohol responsibly and not to exceed the recommending limits.

It comes after Alcohol Change UK said participants in Dry January 2019 reported:

*saving money (86 per cent);

*sleeping better (70pc);

*having more energy (66pc);

*enjoying better overall health (65pc);

*losing weight (58pc).

Dr Ed Ford, chairman of Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group and a Minehead GP, said: "It’s important to note that it’s now known that the risk of developing cancer starts from any level of regular drinking and increases with the amount being drunk.

"According to guidelines set out by England’s chief medical officer, drinking any level of alcohol regularly carries a health risk for anyone, but if men and women limit their intake to no more than 14 units a week it keeps the risk of illness like cancer and liver disease low.

"That’s why I am asking the people of Somerset to cut down their intake of alcohol - or ‘go dry’ by cutting it out completely - this January.

"Despite what you may have read in the papers, a glass of red wine every day is not the healthiest thing you can do for your body as all alcoholic drinks carry a health risk.

"It’s better to have some days where you do not consume alcohol at all - although this doesn’t mean you should ‘save up’ your units for use all in one go – binge drinking can be very bad for your health - so you can give your body a chance to get back to its normal state."

Dr Ford added: "For those of you who really want to get the most benefit this January, I would highly recommend giving booze the boot for the entire month and joining the official Dry January event.

"According to research carried out by the Royal Free Hospital and published in the British Medical Journal, a month off lowers blood pressure, reduces diabetes risk, lowers cholesterol, and reduces levels of cancer-related proteins in the blood.

"Taking a break can also help you to reset your relationship with alcohol, take a step back and assess the impact that it could be having on you."