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Americans' drinking at an all-time high

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Despite ever-increasing information about the negative affects of alcohol, Americans are imbiding more than ever, according to a recently-released study.

The study from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington examined the rates of drinking in every U.S. county from 2002-2012 and heavy drinking from 2005-2012. Rates of heavy drinking increased by 17.2% during this time period, while some counties saw general alcohol consumption increase by as much as 78% between 2002-2012.

"It confirms what we have been seeing in a whole other group of metrics," said Dr. George Koob, director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. “We have seen an increase in the same time period of hospitalizatons due to alcohol and emergency room visits due to alcohol."

Women's drinking rates increased nearly three-fold compared to men's rates, the study found. Binge drinking rose 17.5% among women between 2005-2012, compared to a 4.9% increase among men.

 

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