Binge drinking a risk factor for young women
A recent report from the CDC shows that binge drinking—defined as four or more drinks on an occasion in the last 30 days—is an issue among young women.
“Binge drinking was common among U.S. adult women,” the report states, “and women who binge drank tended to do so frequently (average of three times per month) and intensively (average of six drinks on occasion), placing themselves and others at a greater risk for alcohol-attributable harms. The prevalence of binge drinking was similar among high school girls (especially in grades 11 and 12), women aged 18–24 years, and women aged 25–34 years.”
According to the CDC, binge drinking accounted for an average of 23,000 deaths and 633,000 years of potential life lost among women and girls in the U.S. each year during 2001-05. Further, the CDC notes that excessive drinking is a risk factor for “many health and social problems among women and girls, including unintended and alcohol-exposed pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases and breast cancer.”
Finally, the report recommends a number of “evidence-based strategies to effectively reduce binge drinking and related harms,” including holding retailers “liable for harms related to the sale of alcoholic beverages to minors and intoxicated patrons,” limiting the days and times in which alcohol can be sold and more closely enforcing the minimum legal drinking age.
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