Sunday, October 18, 2015

Think You're Not a Binge Drinker? Think Again

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) define binge drinking as excessive—and problematic—drinking. Stop here and test yourself: how do you define binge drinking?

Just to reiterate: The CDC states that binge drinking is excessive drinking, and people who imbibe this way are problem drinkers.

The answer to what constitutes binge drinking? According to the CDC, binge drinking is when a male drinks “five or more drinks on one occasion” and a woman drinks “four or more drinks on one occasion.” 

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism gives clarification on exactly what constitutes "a drink" :

"In the United States, one "standard" drink contains roughly 14 grams of pure alcohol, which is found in: 12 ounces of regular beer, which is usually about 5% alcohol. 5 ounces of wine, which is typically about 12% alcohol. 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits, which is about 40% alcohol."

Many wine glasses can hold three servings of alcohol. The new craft beers can have as high as 10% alcohol. 

Binge drinkers account for 77% of the national dysfunctional cost of drinking in the U.S., and binge drinking results in “88,000 deaths each year” in the U.S. 

In addition, according to the CDC, two of every five dollars of the cost of paying for binge alcohol related problems—over 100 billion dollars—were paid by the government.

So I ask: what were your presuppositions about your own drinking before you read this? That you don’t binge? That binging means 10 or more drinks?

I love this study because it is true. I would tend to lower the binge drinking level to even fewer drinks, due to the fact that I’ve personally witnessed an even lower number of drinks in one setting as having an effect on the personalities and temperaments of people, including myself when I used to drink.

Most of the drinkers that I know are binge drinkers yet would never define themselves as such.

Perhaps you are a binge drinker and never even knew it. Now is the time to face into the reality that you are among a majority in this nation that is helping this country go down the tubes by sucking up valuable tax dollars that could be used elsewhere, and setting a despicable precedent for those younger than you in your circle of influence.

It’s time to stop being in denial about the dysfunctional drinking culture. We could be so much better than this. Nobody wants to admit the hold alcohol has on them. It takes courage and integrity to begin to live life without it. But oh what a reward in leaving alcohol behind; personally and for the world at large.

copyright Barb Harwood

1 comment:

The Kraals said...

Wow, that is a lot of alcohol in just some drinks! That is what makes people act so funny! Well written.