New Alcohol Recommendations from the CDC

The following is copied by permission from an article in the MICAP/RECAP Newsletter, published by the Michigan Council on Alcohol Problems (MICAP) and was written by Vernon Smith, PhD, and a member of the MICAP Board

The biggest news in decades about recommendations for alcohol use came from the CDC in August 2020. In an 835-page report, the CDC indicated that it is making significant changes to its recommendations on alcohol use, and the recommendation is clear: consume less alcohol.

Regarding alcohol consumption, the [“2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans”] report makes two major changes to previous guidance. Until this year, the Dietary Guidelines recommended no more than “moderate” alcohol intake, defined as no more than one drink per day for women, and two drinks per day for men. The new report will change that recommendation to no more than one drink per day, eliminating the distinction between men and women. Equally significant, the new Guidelines will omit any mention of potential benefits of moderate alcohol consumption. Past reports have alluded to potential benefits. However, recent scientific findings have repeatedly pointed to the role of alcohol in a range of health issues, especially cancer and liver disease, and these risks are now seen as outweighing any small potential protective heart benefits of moderate alcohol use.

The evidence suggests there is no “safe limit,” and the risk of adverse health effects increases with each drink.

Click here for a pdf copy of the rest of the article printed in the MICAP/RECAP Newsletter.

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