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Saturday 6th June 2020

Drinking alcohol could increase your coronavirus risk, according to World Health Organisation

Too much booze can 'compromise the immune system'

The World Health Organisation has warned that drinking alcohol may increase your risk of catching the deadly coronavirus.

A new report by WHO suggests that drinking booze can cause 'health vulnerability' and 'compromise the immune system'.

Drinking alcohol could increase your risk of catching coronavirus, according to the World Health organisation (Credit: Kateřina Janečková for

The expert body also warns that drinking can cause 'risk-taking behaviours, mental health issues and violence'.

The report, published yesterday (April 16) states: "Alcohol compromises the body’s immune system and increases the risk of adverse health outcomes.

"Therefore, people should minimise their alcohol consumption at any time, and particularly during the Covid-19 pandemic."

The report also addresses the misinformation that alcohol can in fact 'kill' the coronavirus. It urged people not to believe false facts and reiterated that drinking too much booze makes you more vulnerable to COVID-19.

WHO advise we minimise alcohol consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic (Credit: Elina Sazonova for

They added: "Fear and misinformation have generated a dangerous myth that consuming high-strength alcohol can kill the Covid-19 virus.

"It does not. Consuming any alcohol poses health risks, but consuming high-strength ethyl alcohol (ethanol), particularly if it has been adulterated with methanol, can result in severe health consequences, including death."

WHO EURO's Programme Manager for Alcohol and Illicit Drugs, Carina Ferreira-Borges warned: "During the Covid-19 pandemic, we should really ask ourselves what risks we are taking in leaving people under lockdown in their homes with a substance that is harmful both in terms of their health and the effects of their behavior on others, including violence."

She went on to tweet that people should 'stay sober so you can make decisions with a clear head', adding advice including not to use alcohol to 'deal with emotions and stress'.

However, her advice did not go down well with many of her followers, with one replying: "Bugger off. The entire populous - at least those without money or political power - have been infantilised and sent to their bedrooms. If we want to get stinking drunk, we bloody well will."

Another added: "You should promote education not stupid obedience of authorities following of rules because of fear.

"Alcohol does not interfere with logical reasoning unless in harmful high amounts, such that most will no longer be able to walk safely."

Current UK guidelines state you should consume no more than 14 units of alcohol a week.

One unit is 10ml of alcohol, meaning you should drink no more than six pints of beer or six medium glasses of wine.

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