Half of middle-aged men in the UK are putting their health at risk by drinking too much, according to a leading alcohol education charity.

Research by Drinkaware shows 44% of men aged 45-64 are consuming more than the low risk guidelines of 14 units per week. On average this group consumes 37 units a week, which is two and a half times the guidelines.

Within this, around 800,000 men in this age group are drinking 50 or more units in a typical week, the equivalent of 21 pints. 

The research also suggests a lack of awareness around the harms associated with drinking within this age group.

Elaine Hindal, chief executive at Drinkaware, said: “For a large number of middle-aged men, drinking is part of their daily routine and often goes unnoticed. As there are often no immediate negative consequences to their drinking, they are unaware of how their drinking may be impacting on their health.

“Our ‘Have a little less, feel a lot better’ campaign, which launches today, aims to show these drinkers that reducing alcohol consumption, even by just a few drinks each week can begin to make a big difference to their long-term health. This includes reducing blood pressure, improving mental health, losing weight and increasing energy levels.”

To launch the campaign, Drinkaware has create a free, interactive tool to help people understand what a small change in their drinking would mean to them, alongside help and advice to support them cut down on their drinking.