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Drinking deaths: CDC says one-in-ten adult deaths in US linked to alcohol

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Drinking deaths in the U.S. are responsible for killing one out of every ten adults, says a new report from the Centers for Disease Control. Overuse and misuse of alcohol is responsible for a whopping 88,000 deaths per year, says the CDC.

According to the CDC Press Release, the study looked at individuals from 2006 to 2010 between the ages of 20 and 64. The report showed that the lives of those who died were shortened by approximately 30 years.

The report said:

These deaths were due to health effects from drinking too much over time, such as breast cancer, liver disease, and heart disease; and health effects from drinking too much in a short period of time, such as violence, alcohol poisoning, and motor vehicle crashes. In total, there were 2.5 million years of potential life lost each year due to excessive alcohol use.

Seventy percent of the premature deaths involved males. Only five percent of the deaths were from individuals under the legal drinking age of 21.

“Excessive alcohol use is a leading cause of preventable death that kills many Americans in the prime of their lives,” said Ursula E. Bauer, Ph.D., M.P.H., director of CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. “We need to redouble our efforts to implement scientifically proven public health approaches to reduce this tragic loss of life and the huge economic costs that result.”

Excessive drinking (defined by the CDC as binge drinking – five or more drinks at once, and heavy drinking – more than 15 drinks per week for a man or more than eight for a woman), accounts for huge economic losses.

Reports LiveScience:

In 2006, binge drinking, underage drinking and drinking by pregnant women cost U.S. taxpayers $223.5 billion, the CDC study showed. That breaks down to $746 per taxpayer, the researchers said, or about $1.90 for each alcoholic drink consumed that year.

Losses in workplace productivity accounted for 72 percent of the total cost. Health care expenses came in a distant second, making up 11 percent of the cost.

LiveScience also reported back in February that alcohol use “accounted for roughly 3.5 percent of all cancer deaths in the United States in 2009. This amounts to nearly 20,000 Americans who lost their lives to cancer that year as a result of drinking.”

See also:

Pot and schizophrenia linked: Study flips psychosis and pot smoking theories

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