Liquor Consumption Rates

Thursday, June 22, 2017, 18:33
By Global BC News Hour

Chris Gailus: Troubling new statistics in health matters tonight has doctors warning us about an often overlooked health threat. Alcohol has become the third leading cause of death globally and a new report warns that unless we start paying more attention it’ll only get worse. Nadia Stewart reports.

Nadia Stewart: With the arrival of summer comes late night drinks and patio season. But for those not tracking how many pints or glasses they’re downing, health experts say now might be a good time to start.

Jean Harvey: Alcohol is a growing health and social issue. It’s gone from up to the third leading cause of death and disability globally, and that’s up from being sixth.

Stewart: In canada, increased alcohol consumption is having an impact. A new report from the Canadian Institute for Health Information found that from 2015 to 2016 there were more hospitalizations for alcohol than for heart attacks. And here in BC…

Tim Stockwell: Consumption in BC is going up three times faster than the rest of Canada at the moment.

Stewart: Experts say a healthy economy is leading to unhealthy lifestyle choices.

Stockwell: The healthier an economy, the more people are consuming, by and large. Alcohol is killing more people than opioid drugs, but we’re not blaming the alcohol for it. We take alcohol for granted and we are perhaps in a little bit of denial about some of the massive level of the harm that it’s causing.

Stewart: Concerns over the consequences of more easily available alcohol prompting Vancouver Coastal Health to push back against grocery store liquor sales.

Patricia Daly: Because we see increased availability we’re quite concerned that we will continue to see rising rates of harms, including more hospitalizations in BC, and certainly grocery sales might be one way that we might fuel that increase.

Stewart: Experts say the key is moderation and knowledge. Speaking with a family doctor about how much you should or should not be drinking per week and understanding the effects the alcohol has on the body. The CIHI report will be updated regularly to see whether or not Canadians are getting the message.