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Booze review: OECD report reveals the water of life's lethal data

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By Euronews
Booze review: OECD report reveals the water of life's lethal data

<p>It was Frank Sinatra who said, “alcohol may be man’s worst enemy, but the bible says love your enemy.” It seems that many have taken that motto to heart, and a new report from the <span class="caps">OECD</span> shows that overall alcohol consumption is falling in developed countries, but that risky drinking is on the rise. </p> <iframe src='http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/embed-oecd/social-issues-migration-health/tackling-harmful-alcohol-use_9789264181069-en' scrolling='no' style='min-height: 450px; min-width: 450px;' width='100%' height='100%'/></iframe> <p>We’ve broken down some of the most interesting points in the report below.</p> <ul> <li>An average adult in an <span class="caps">OECD</span> country consumes <strong>9.1 litres of pure alcohol</strong> a year. That is the equivalent of just over 300 large glasses of wine or about 100 bottles, which would be about two bottles a week.</li> </ul> <p><iframe src="//e.infogr.am/alcohol_consumption_among_adults_in_oecd_countries?src=embed" width="550" height="706" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="border:none;"></iframe></p> <ul> <li><strong>Austria, Estonia and France</strong> reported the highest consumption of alcohol, with 12.0 litres or more per adult per year in 2012.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>The majority of alcohol is consumed by the heaviest-drinking 20% of the population. In most countries, the latter drink between 50% and 75% of all alcohol, and <strong>up to over 90% in Hungary</strong>.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>On average, accross 20 <span class="caps">OECD</span> countries, the proportion of children who had experienced <strong>drunkenness by age 15 increased from 30% to 43% (boys) and from 26% to 41% (girls)</strong> between 2001 and 2010.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>People with <strong>more education and higher socioeconomic status (<span class="caps">SES</span>) are more likely to drink alcohol</strong>. However, in general less educated and lower <span class="caps">SES</span> men, as well as more educated and higher <span class="caps">SES</span> women, are more likely to indulge in risky drinking. That is drinking a weekly amount of pure alcohol of 140 grams or more for women, and 210 grams or more for men.</li> </ul> <ul> <li><strong>Men are more likely than women to die from alcohol-attributable deaths</strong>. For males, the figure is 7.6% of deaths, with injuries as the main cause, versus 4.0% for females, mainly cardiovascular diseases.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Harmful consumption of alcohol <strong>rose from eighth to fifth leading cause of death and disability in the world</strong> between 1990 and 2010. It is now responsible for a greater proportion of deaths worldwide than <span class="caps">HIV</span>/AIDS, violence and tuberculosis together, according to a 2014 <span class="caps">WHO</span> report.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Portugal, along with France, are the countries where <strong>wine</strong> is the largest share of the alcohol consumed.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>The <strong>cost of alcohol dependence</strong> alone, in the European Union, was estimated in 2013 at 0.65% of <span class="caps">GDP</span> by a group of experts. So approximately <strong>84,500,000,000€/year</strong> (2013 EU <span class="caps">GDP</span> was more or less 13 trillion euros).</li> </ul> <ul> <li>In 2003 in the EU, the total cost of <strong>crime</strong> (police, courts and prisons, defensive and insurance and property damage) was on average <span class="caps">EUR</span> <strong>33 billion</strong> (from a range of 23-57 billion) and the cost related to <strong>traffic accidents caused by alcohol</strong> abuse was <span class="caps">EUR</span> <strong>10 billion</strong> (6-16 billion).</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Turkey has the highest rate of unrecorded alcohol consumption among the countries studied at 29%. <strong>Unrecorded alcohol</strong> is, according to the <span class="caps">WHO</span>, “alcohol that is not taxed in the country where it is consumed because it is usually produced, distributed and sold outside the formal channels under government control.”</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Some historians argue that the <strong>switch to farming from hunter-gathering</strong> in Neolithic times was inspired by the desire to ensure a regular supply of grain for brewing.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Drinkers typically drink at least <strong>four times more alcohol than they admit</strong>. The French and Hungarians tend to downplay their level of consumption more than other <span class="caps">OECD</span> nationalities.</li> </ul> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">How much alcohol people drink vs how much alcohol people admit they drink <a href="http://t.co/59j87LChqD">pic.twitter.com/59j87LChqD</a></p>— Duncan Hooper (@DuncanHooper) <a href="https://twitter.com/DuncanHooper/status/598367263650140160">May 13, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> <ul> <li>On average a quarter of alcohol drunk in <span class="caps">OECD</span> countries is in <strong>beer</strong>, a third in <strong>wine</strong> and the rest from spirits and other drinks.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>While drinking is bad for productivity at work, some evidence suggests that <strong>moderate drinkers may get higher wages</strong> than people who abstain from alcohol.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>The maximum recommended alcohol consumption in Spain (40mg/week for men and 20mg/week for women) is <strong>twice as high as in the Netherlands</strong>.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>In the past two decades alcohol consumption in <strong>Russia</strong> has risen about 60%, higher than any other <span class="caps">OECD</span> country.</li> </ul>