55+ and participating in IkPas. Does that make sense?

In 2018, 30% of all IkPas participants was 55 years or older. In 2021 this percentage was even 45%. Nice numbers, showing that more and more not-so-squeaky participants are challenge to temporarily stop their glass of alcohol. Because you are never too old to take a closer look at your own drinking habits. In fact, participating in IkPas is extra useful for everyone aged 55 and older. Read here why!

We tend to think that if you have had certain habits for years, you can no longer or need to learn them later in life. Quatsch we now know! Because just as quitting smoking at any age is better for your health, you are never too old to take an alcohol break. Do you fall into the category of not-so-super-young IkPas participants? Read here why participating in IkPas is such a good idea.

New phase of life, new drinking pattern?

You have entered a phase in your life where you have more time for yourself. It has become calmer at home, especially when you have children, and you have also entered a different phase in terms of work. It is precisely in that phase, when you start to organize your life differently, that a new drinking habit can arise. If you are a moderate drinker now, chances are you will drink less and less as you get older. If you are a heavy drinker now, you are more likely to become a heavy drinker in the future. Taking a break now will help you stop and make conscious choices for the future.

Source: fact sheet Trimbos

Smaller chance of falling

No matter how fit you are, your body changes with age. For example, the ratio of fat and water in your body changes, so that you will notice the effect of alcohol more quickly. Where in the past you might not get tipsy from an extra drink, you are now more likely to be under the influence. This increases the chance that you will trip and break something, for example. Research shows that alcohol plays a role in 7 to 11% of the 100,000 falls that occur annually among the elderly.

Better for your heart and head

Of course you already know that not drinking alcohol is healthier. But did you know that alcohol also increases the risk of heart and blood pressure problems, diabetes and high cholesterol? And these are precisely the most common health problems among older people in particular. You can also become forgetful or confused from (excessive) alcohol use.

Another healthy reason: As you get older, your stomach, liver and kidneys break down the alcohol you drink more slowly. As a result, the alcohol you drink does more damage to you than to younger drinkers. Not drinking for a while keeps you sharper and your organs fitter!

The combination with medication

The older you get, the more likely you are to take medication for something. Alcohol has the annoying property that it reduces or enhances the effect of certain medicines. Alcohol can also cause you to experience stronger side effects from your medications. Source: White paper VNN 'Getting older and drinking alcohol'

Facts about IkPas-ers aged 55 and older

  • In 2021, 31% of the participants was 55 years or older, 14% of the participants 65 years or older. In 2018 this was 22% and 8% respectively. The percentage of older participants in IkPas is therefore increasing.
  • The average number of drinking days in 2017 for participants aged 55-64 was 5 days a week, for participants aged 65 and older this average was almost 6 days a week. In comparison, the average drinking behavior of people aged 25 to 34 years was 3 days a week.

IkPas: a great opportunity for a healthy reset

As you can see, in addition to all the other healthy reasons not to drink alcohol (for a while), there are also reasons that apply especially to you as an older participant. Perhaps one of these reasons will give you that extra push to complete your IkPas period. It is certain that you can do it, because the number of participants who complete this challenge is highest among the 'oldies'. Go for it!

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