10 percent of U.S. adult deaths tied to excessive drinking
Between 2006 and 2010, one in every 10 deaths among working-age adults was attributable to excessive alcohol consumption, according to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
The study looked at alcohol-attributable deaths (AAD) and years of potential life lost (YPLL) among adults between ages 20 and 64. Excessive alcohol consumption was defined as binge drinking--more than five drinks for men or more than four drinks for women on one occasion; heavy weekly alcohol consumption--more than 15 drinks a week for men and more than eight drinks for women; and any alcohol consumption by pregnant women or people under the age of 21.
The results of the study, published in the CDC journal Preventing Chronic Disease, showed that out of all the deaths that occurred during the study period, nearly 10 percent was attributed to excessive alcohol consumption. The numbers came out to more than 87,000 annual AADs. The most common causes of AAD were alcoholic liver disease and motor-vehicle crashes.
The researchers did point out that the study’s results were partially limited by self-reported data and by excluding data on former drinkers. However, they concluded that excessive drinking may be a substantial cause of premature mortality among working-age adults and they added that measures should be taken to help reduce the health and economic costs related to excessive alcohol consumption.