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To live longer: skip the second and third drink

The Preventing Chronic Disease online journal sent out a report today on how excessive alcohol use causes approximately 80,000 deaths in the United States each year.

Before you say yes to that third (or even second) drink, consider:

Excessive alcohol use includes binge drinking (defined as 5 or more drinks for men or 4 or more drinks for women on 1 or more occasions), heavy drinking (more than 1 drink per day on average for women or more than 2 for men), and any drinking among underage youth or women who are pregnant.

Excessive alcohol use is the nation’s third-leading cause of preventable death, causing approximately 80,000 deaths per year in the United States and contributing to a range of health and social problems, including automobile crashes and drowning, heart disease, hypertension, cancers such as breast and oral-pharyngeal, interpersonal violence, HIV infection, unplanned pregnancy, alcohol poisoning, and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. These negative consequences for individuals, families, communities, and society at large cost the United States approximately $223.5 billion in 2006.

(S-R photo by Colin Mulvany)

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Writer Catherine Johnston of Olympia, Wash., addresses issues facing aging baby boomers and seniors as well as issues of serious illness, death and dying, grief and loss.

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