A new study revealed that Americans are dealing with things like the declining discourse that has now culminated with the Trump presidency in a fashion that really isn’t all that surprising.
According to a newly released study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Americans are drinking much more than anyone previously realized. Specifically, people in the U.S. are binge-drinking on a scale that has many researchers at the CDC concerned about this health crisis.
Every year drinking claims the lives of 88,000 Americans. That averages out to mean that 1 in 10 deaths among working-age adults is related to alcohol, and more than half of those are a result of binge drinking.
GO HOME AMERICA, YOU’RE DRUNK
The CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion reported that adults in the U.S. consume more than 17 billion binge drinks every year. Individually, that averages out to 470 binge drinks annually for people who consume alcohol in this manner.
One in six Americans, or around 37.4 million citizens (17 percent), binge drink once a week, on average. Those individuals consume about seven drinks per binging session. That amounts to a grand total of 17.5 billion binge drinks consumed every year in the land of the free and home of the drunk.
BINGE DRINKING DEFINED
Typically, a binge drinker will consume alcohol about once a week. On average, they consume seven drinks in a two hour period.
The definition of binge drinking is as follows: for men, it means having five or more drinks containing alcohol in a two hour period. For women to be considered binge drinking, they need at least four drinks in that time frame.
MEN VERSUS WOMEN
The vast majority of binge drinkers are men. Four out of every five binge drinks were consumed by males. Overall, men drink about twice as much as women do.
The biggest binge drinkers are non-Hispanic whites at 19.2 percent and American Indians/Alaska Natives at 17.9 percent. Binge drinking rates are indeed higher in younger age groups but are present in those at every age, including individuals aged 65 years and up.
SEVERE HEALTH RISKS
The dangers associated with binge drinking are immense. There are social issues to contend with like suicide, violence, and unintentional injuries to others. However, it’s the health risks that are even more dangerous.
People who binge drink have a higher risk of alcohol poisoning, cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, cancer, and liver diseases like cirrhosis.
“This study shows that binge drinkers are … greatly increasing their chances of harming themselves and others,” said Robert Brewer, M.D., M.S.P.H., lead researcher in CDC’s alcohol program. “The findings also show the importance of taking a comprehensive approach to prevent binge drinking.”
Dr. Brewer recommends that doctors need to screen more appropriately for alcohol dependence. He said that increasing taxes on alcohol and decreasing the number of locations where it is available could be viable solutions to the health crisis as well.
Feature Image via ABC News Video