Avoidance of Risky Substances

Meek Integrative Health Center - Avoidance of Risky Substances

It is well known that tobacco use and drinking too much alcohol increases the risk of many chronic diseases and death, which is why avoiding risky substances is so important.  People who are ready can and do quit smoking.  There are more former smokers in the world now than there are current smokers.  Some treatments work for alcohol abuse, but treatments often take time, different approaches and many attempts.  Giving yourself patience as well as getting support from others is an important part of reaching your goals. 

Effective Treatment Models

  • Counseling-Individual, Group, Telephone, Quick visits and/or longer more intense visits. 
  • Medications (anti-relapse)
  • Counseling plus medication is more effective


  • No more than 4 drinks on any day
  • No more than 14 drinks in 7 days


  • No more than 3 drinks in any day
  • No more than 7 drinks in 7 days


One standard alcohol drink in US

  • 12 oz Beer
  • 5 oz table wine
  • 1.5 oz of 80 proof spirits

"Bing" Drinking is defined as 5 drinks in 2 hours for men.  4 drinks in 2 hours for women. 

Typical Containers:

  • 750 ml wine=5 drinks
  • 750 ml spirits=18 drinks
  • 1 L spirits= 24 drinks

Goals for Avoiding Risky Substances

SMART goals guide goal settings to help plan and achieve goals.  Setting goals around substance use (tobacco, alcohol or other drugs) is a great way to start making changes.  An example of a goal is, "I will swap my morning cigarette with chewing gum at least 5 days a week for the next four weeks.  I will ask my partner to help keep me on track and use the free texting service for more support."

Specific-What are you going to do to decrease your substance use?

Measurable-How much will you reduce it by?

Attainable-Do you have what it takes to follow through?

Realistic-What can you actually do? (improvement over perfection)

Time-How often or for how long will you make this change?

Helpful Resources

National Quit Link 1-800-Quit-Now

NAADAC Substance Abuse Professionals

American Society of Addiction Medicine

NIAAA Alcohol Treatment Navigator

American College of Lifestyle Medicine

Reach out to our friendly team and begin your journey to better health with Meek Integrative Health Center!

Office Hours

Monday - Friday

8:00 am - 6:00 pm

Saturday, Sunday