Asked if he drank too much, Mr Kennedy replied: "No. And if people have that concern, they should not have that concern, you're sitting right next to me now, you can tell and you see me prove regularly that I'm as healthy as healthy can be.
"But, equally as a public figure and as a party leader, perception is extremely important. Now I can't prove negatives, nobody can prove negatives in life, all I can do is demonstrate that I'm on form, firing on all cylinders and up for the task in hand."
Asked if he was cutting back on alcohol, he said: "Yes, I'm actually an extremely moderate and infrequent consumer of alcohol as a matter of fact."
When asked if it had been a "battle to stay off the booze" and whether he had any medical support at all, he said: "No, no, no, that is not the case, it is a matter on all fronts - if there's something my doctor really wants me to do over this holiday period as a matter of fact is give us smoking, and I think he's right."