max temp: 11°C

min temp: 8°C


Ipswich: MP Dan Poulter explains he has been tee-total since seeing a fellow student resucitated after a cocktail of drink and drugs

09:00 29 March 2014

Richard Porritt interviews Dan Poulter MP

Richard Porritt interviews Dan Poulter MP

Health minister and doctor Dan Poulter has stayed off the drink since he was a young man after medics had to resuscitate his friend following a drink and drug cocktail.


The Central Suffolk and North Ipswich MP revealed the reason that he is tea-total in an interview with the political magazine The House.

He said that he was “quite comfortable with not drinking” and was able to resist the peer pressure of being a medical student and a rugby player when he was younger.

He said: “When I was a lot younger I was at a college party and one of my friends had a drink and drug cocktail and choked on their own vomit and ended up having to be resuscitated.

“Their short-term memory was affected afterwards. That is something that stayed with me ever since and really put me off.

He said that during his medical training he worked on a liver ward at King College Hospital and saw end stage liver failure.

Dr Poulter, right, said the he also saw people vomiting up their whole blood volume because of damage done to the liver through alcohol when working in A&E.

“I am quite comfortable not drinking and once you get into the habit of not drinking and you resist the peer pressure that comes from being a medical student and a rugby player then you get used to it. I am probably addicted to Diet Coke.”

Dr Poulter, who is a junior minister in the Department for Health, also revealed why he will not be joining other MPs in the London Marathon next month.

“I am not really built for running – I am about seventeen and a half stone,” he said.

“I try to go to the parliamentary gym when I have time. I will be back in (rugby) training again properly next season. I did a little bit of golf when I was a teenager so I am trying to get back into that.

“It is a more sustainable sport. I tend to quite a lot of charity runs in the constituency and generally most things sporty I will give it a go.”



  • beerlover, we hear you! There has been many studies over the years that alcohol in moderation can actually be good for your health (like you specify only beer and wine is applicable) and ironically enough for Dan Poulter, Diet Coke has had many health concerns over the years. Something I find rather intriguing - instead of helping Coca Cola line their pockets, forget coke entirely and drink water or fruit juice. Surely a more healthier option that a doctor should be encouraging others to do?

    Report this comment

    Ipswich Entrepreneur

    Saturday, March 29, 2014

  • The consensus is that moderate consumption of beer and wine can be good for our health. Diet coke probably isn't the best alternative to alcohol. I would like to know if there are any studies analysing the health and life expectancy of groups that do not consume alcohol at all, such as the Salvation Army and Mormons.

    Report this comment


    Saturday, March 29, 2014

  • MPs don't set a good example with cheap bars in Westminster so our MP has more temptations than most. It also makes it difficult to understand why everyone else should have to put up with minimum prices if it does not apply to them when they are at work. I'm glad our MP is able to lead by example but I don't understand why he is promoting a particular soft drink. I hope he isn't being paid to do so.

    Report this comment


    Saturday, March 29, 2014

  • after listening to the M P S at prime ministers question time on a wednesday i wonder how many of them are on the bottle

    Report this comment


    Friday, April 4, 2014

  • Fortunately, there's a third option. And it's the one I would suggest that the vast majority of drinkers already take (not that you'd guess that from the one-sided coverage in the media) - drink in moderation, enjoy a few nice Real Ales without having to have so many that you get drunk. You'll not only have the pleasure of enjoying some delicious flavours but you'll also enjoy better health than your teetotal or binge-drinking friends. (Research by no less a person that Professor Richard Doll has shown that people who drink between one and sixty units of alcohol per week have lower premature death-rates than those who consume none or more than 60. The amount of benefit varies depending on what you drink, spirits drinkers see no benefit, wine drinkers some and beer drinkers benefit most).

    Report this comment


    Saturday, March 29, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Murrayfield Primary School.

Governors have criticised Suffolk County Council after they resigned from their school which was branded ‘inadequate’.

Colchester lights switch on.

On the first weekend of Advent, the region truly got into the Christmas spirit with trees and coloured lights going up in town centres across Suffolk and north Essex.

Drink-driver in court

A company director has lost his licence after admitting drink-driving while travelling at 94mph on the A14.

Ipswich Crown Court.

A 21-year-old Ipswich man who attacked two guests at a party with a machete has been jailed for nine years.

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

A former servicemen has been banned from driving after crashing his car on Remembrance Sunday while nearly three times the legal alcohol limit.

Rail passengers are facing a day of disruption due to overrunning engineering work in Cambridgeshire.

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court

A 20-year-old woman was given a six week prison sentence suspended for 12 months for stealing £10 from a resident of a care home where she worked.

Concerns for police staff over jobs

Hundreds of Suffolk Constabulary civilian staff face an anxious wait this week to discover the impact of a multi-million pound cost-cutting programme.

Tim Holder, director of the Suffolk Community Foundation, with Surviving Winter supporter, former journalist and TV presenter Christine Webber

A campaign to combat fuel poverty in Suffolk has helped more than 100 people to stay warm this winter in the first three weeks since its launch.

Bawdsey Quay

Flood alerts and warnings in place last night in parts of Suffolk have been lifted this morning.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Suffolk's trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the Ipswich Star e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24