What is a standard drink?
Standard Drink – Defintion
Many people are confused to what counts as a standard drink. It doesn’t matter how much is in your glass, what counts is the amount of alcohol in the drink. In the US, a “standard” drink contains 14 grams of pure alcohol which is equivalent to:
- 12 ounces of regular beer at 5% alcohol
- 5 ounces of wine at 12% alcohol
- 5 ounces of distilled spirits at 40% alcohol
Alcohol Content in a Standard Drink
The percentage of alcohol in the drink is the most important criteria to look for when measuring how much alcohol is in a drink. Some sugary drinks such as long island ice tea contains multiple shots of alcohol and may be very deceptive in their alcohol content. This is dangerous because you can be impaired with just 1 drink depending on the amount of shots in the drink. Carbonated alcoholic beverages such as champagne hit the blood system and brain much more quickly than non-carbonated drinks. The drinker rarely knows the effects of drinking alcohol on driving until it is too late. If you know you’ll be drinking, make sure you get a designated driver or call a Taxi or Uber.
How do you know how much alcohol is in your drink?
Even though they come in different sizes, the drinks below are each examples of one standard drink: