Defining Moderate Drinking in Dietary Guidelines
The US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee is proposing to alter the definition of "moderate drinking" and to encourage moderate drinking as part of a healthy diet.
Current (2010) Dietary Guidelines define moderate drinking as up to 1 drink a day for women and up to 2 drinks a day for men. The 2015 Guidelines change the definition of moderate alcohol consumption to 1 - 3 drinks a day for women and
2 - 4 drinks a day for men.
Why the concern?
The definition of moderate drinking is too broad and promotes a consumption level just shy of binge-drinking. According to the CDC, binge drinking is 4 drinks (for women) and 5 drinks (for men) within a 2-hour sitting. The 2015 Guidelines do not define binge-drinking.
The proposed Guidelines suggest moderate drinking can be healthy, without specifying what is a standard drink. A standard drink is 12 oz of beer, 5 oz of wine, or 1.5 oz of liquor. On average, a person needs 1 hour to process a standard drink.
We want the guidelines to provide clarity to the public about what moderate drinking levels are. Please take the opportunity to issue a public comment in favor of maintaining the 2010 Guidelines due to the greater specificity provided. Submitting public comment here does not constitute lobbying, because it is not a legislative body.
The deadline to provide comments on the Guidelines has been extended to May 8, 2015.
Submit online comments here.
To view the 2010 Dietary Guidelines, click here.
For additional information, view a Fact Sheet from US Alcohol Policy Alliance
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