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Europe's Drinking Problem

Blog Forums Interesting books, articles, and authors Europe's Drinking Problem

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    Drinking less has been tough for me to wrap my head around. It’s so ingrained in our culture! People think you’re nuts if you suggest they drink less water. This article helped me. I send it to people, along with the “There’s no evidence for 8 glasses of water” one Matt links to somewhere.

    I often wonder what the average European’s metabolic rate is like – eating all that cheese, bread, pasta, saturated fat….and less water.


    Well, this is about the quality of article I expect from The Weekly Standard. Remember this is the ragsheet of a Neoconservative group that believes in American Exceptionalism. So, they waste no opportunity to hate on evil Europeans, many of whom have evil stuff like, you know, universal health care.

    First of all, it’s just not true that Europeans don’t drink anything but alcohol and coffee. Did he base that on a study or any kind of fact? One look even in an American supermarket will tell you that’s bull. You will find Perrier, Evian, Volvic and many other European waters. And you will find the same in European food markets, including all kinds of juices, etc to drink.

    The issue about Champagne predates the existence of the EU. Look, Italians make sparkling wines. They don’t call theirs Champagne. Champagne stems from the part of France called Champagne. Can’t he see that this is sort of like a copyright issue? Is Kristol still editor of The Weekly Standard? I wonder if that reactionary nutjob would like it if a Liberal newspaper decided to name itself The Weekly Standard? Bet he wouldn’t like that. The demand that American companies not use the name Champagne is not ridiculous at all.

    The guy who wrote this article is full of shit!


    Soooo, you sound very angry. The title of this forum is “interesting books, articles, and authors.” I’m sorry you didn’t find it interesting. I posted it simply because it was some guy’s experience of beverage intake in Europe. And I also thought that legislation about water not being hydrating was funny/interesting. I’ve heard other people experience the same thing when they visit Europe – they don’t really see people chugging liquids all day long like you see in the U.S. Whether that’s fact or just anecdotal? I don’t know.

    Matt Stone

    Thomas is a professional ranter Nicole. A damn fine one. Perhaps the best I’ve ever encountered. Don’t mind his “tone.”

    I think it’s probably true that Europeans are less likely to tote Big Gulps around with them everywhere they go. I’ve travelled outside of the U.S. many times (although never to Europe) and there are many generalizations that can be made. I don’t recall seeing any 40-ounce cups or many people toting around water bottles for fear of dehydration.


    I’ve spent a little over half a year in Europe (mainly Greece and Italy), and I would agree with the generalization that they drink less water. For example, at restaurants there’s no assumption that you’ll want water with your meal. Wine, being much cheaper than n the US, might be the only drink unless you ask for water. Further, the water is often carbonated, which encourages slower drinking.

    This isn’t to say that Greeks and Italians don’t drink water. Obviously they do, but there isn’t the standard American bright-colored, obsessive fitness culture that pushes people to drink a gallon a day. Italians especially are much more likely to abide by old dining traditions (pasta is just as common as you’d expect), and so they aren’t likely to fall into fads. The Greeks have their traditions too, but their fast food souvlaki culture (basically, gyro shops) is contributing to a real obesity problem.

    Finally, as Matt said, I’ve never seen anything like a big gulp anywhere in Europe. There were plenty of sweet drinks available, but huge fountain drinks just weren’t sold anywhere.


    I just had to google ‘big gulp’.
    Haha! Looks pretty good. If only I. Could handle that much fluid

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