American Adults Consume 17.5 Billion Drinks a Year, CDC Reports


Here's a number that's hard to swallow: USA adults consume more than 17 billion alcoholic drinks during binges each year, according to a new report. In all, the study found there were a staggering 17.5 billion binge drinks consumed per year.

The CDC defines binge drinking as consuming five or more drinks for men or four or more drinks for women in two hours. While binge drinking might be commonly associated with college parties and younger revelers, the study found that half of binge drinks were consumed by those aged 35 or older.

"Definitely the most surprising aspect of the study was how many people drink excessively", CBS News medical contributor Dr. Holly Phillips told "CBS This Morning". The health agency added that binge drinking in the USA has caused over half of America's 88,000 alcohol-related deaths per year, and about three-fourths of the damages linked to excessive drinking, which are estimated at around $249 billion.

The Kentucky Distillers' Association, Buzick Construction, CityScoot, Independent Stave Company, Kentucky Office of Highway Safety, Louisville Metro Councilman Brandon Coan, Louisville Metro Police Department, Lyft and Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of Kentucky partnered with Safe Ride KY for the discounts.

The researchers looked at data from interviews of over 400,000 Americans. In the long run, bingeing can result in cancer, heart, and live diseases.

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CDC researchers warned that binge drinking is a practice that needs to be prevented, as it could put drinkers and other people in harm's way.

Binge drinkers with lower household incomes (less than $25,000 a year) and lower educational levels (less than high school) consumed substantially more binge drinks per year than those with higher incomes and educational levels. The states with the highest binge drinking levels were Arkansas, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Hawaii.

The CDC undertook the analysis to better understand binge drinking. He said that US officials could increase alcohol taxes, restrict the number of days or hours in which establishments can sell alcohol, hold businesses culpable for illegally serving underage or intoxicated customer, and place limits on the number of outlets that could sell alcohol in a given location. Research has shown that binge drinking can result in unsafe driving, risky sexual behavior, and more violent behavior, and it also increases the risk of cancer, heart disease and liver failure.

The government recommends that if people use alcohol, it be used in moderation, meaning up to one drink per day for adult women and up to two drinks per day for men, the CDC said.

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