THE Government’s latest guidelines for alcohol consumption have been welcomed by the council and various local health promotion organisations.

We’re now all supposed to drink no more than 14 units of the stuff a week, which is the same as before for women but a third less for men.

Some people are really quite confused about official guidelines for both drinking and eating, but it’s really not that difficult to understand. All we have to do is remember that whatever Government scientists say is the truth right at this moment is indeed the absolute truth, and we should forget any truths we’ve heard from them previously because they’re no longer true.

Therefore, if you’re a man and have been drinking 21 units a week – the equivalent of about a pint and a half of ordinary beer or lager a day – at any time since the previous guidelines came out about 20 years ago, you probably think you’re quite sensible.

In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. If you continue to drink 21 units a week you’ll have a liver the size of a manhole cover with the appearance and consistency of a partially-burst bin liner of condemned offal.

Of course, if you stopped drinking 21 units at the moment it became safe to drink only 14, you’ll be fine.

You may also have been led to believe in the past that a little red wine every evening can help with the circulation and keep the heart ticking over nicely. This truth is no longer true, and even a small glass of red wine every evening from now on means you’re probably going to suffer the same sort of early demise as Dylan Thomas – except probably not in New York’s Chelsea Hotel and almost certainly without having written a substantial body of poetry.

Turning to the subject of red meat. Eating it at the moment doesn’t cause enough hideous diseases to fill an entire chapter of a medical dictionary. It used to, but only between about the 1990s and a few years ago. Red meat hasn’t changed much, of course, although the truth has.

If you ate it before the period when it was a deadly poison, or do so now, you’ll have no problems.

It’s a similar story with eggs, which were described by Government scientists for decades as an excellent source of nutrients, emerged as apocalyptic hand grenades of artery-obliterating doom about 25 years ago but are now all right again.

We should all keep up with what Government scientists have to say, and should never quibble over trivia such as the apparent lack of compelling peer-reviewed evidence to support anything they say about anything.

Nor should we wonder why those same scientists never seem to demand health warnings for sugar and salt content on food packaging in our supermarkets, which would have immense public health benefits but might affect certain corporations’ willingness to make political donations.

After all, it’s not as if Government scientists’ continued prosperity depends on coming up with advice which chimes in with whatever their masters want to lecture us about.