CDC: Americans Binge Over 17 Billion Drinks a Year

Alcohol

Alcohol

But a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) finds that the practice is widespread beyond the college years, well into adulthood. The survey asks on how many days in the past month someone drank and how much they drank on average on those days-but also how many times they drank more than four or five drinks in one sitting, which is the definition of binge drinking set by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

The report found that about 17 percent of USA adults, or 37 million people, reported binge drinking in 2015.

US adults consumed more than 17 billion binge drinks in 2015, or about 470 binge drinks per binge drinker, according to a first-of-its-kind study released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

"This study shows that binge drinkers are consuming a huge number of drinks per year, greatly increasing their chances of harming themselves and others", said study co-author 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, focusing on reducing both the number of times people binge drink and the amount they drink when they binge", he added.

About 4 in 5 total binge drinks were consumed by men.

Binge drinking was more common in low-income households and among people with lower educational levels.

While binge drinking was more common among younger adults age 18 to 34, more than half of the binge drinks consumed over the study period were by adults age 35 and older. Americans drink more than 17 billion alcoholic beverages each year during binges, according to new research.

The CDC warns of the dangers of binge drinking, including the increased likelihood of unsafe driving and risky sexual behavior. Excessive alcohol use is also associated with a higher risk of serious health problems such as cancer, heart disease, and liver failure.

It's St. Patrick's Day on Saturday, and encouraging people to drink in moderation is probably going to land on deaf ears.