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Alcohol Issues Insights

 

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Alcohol Issues INSIGHTS keeps you fully informed about critical alcohol policy issues. Every month,Alcohol Issues INSIGHTS delivers four pages packed with the information you need to answer critics and educate the public. In addition, e-mail subscribers receive 40 weekly updates with the latest news.

Alcohol issues are increasingly on the front burner. Politicians, advocacy groups and the media are turning up the heat even as a large and growing body of scientific research establishes the many health benefits of moderate drinking. These very issues - attacks by anti-alcohol activists and the facts about the health benefits of moderate drinking - have always been the focus of Alcohol Issues INSIGHTS. Here's a small sampling of the news and info you'll get:

In Alcohol Issues INSIGHTS, you'll find exclusive articles. Some detail the latest studies adding to the vast body of research showing benefits of moderate consumption. Others monitor the progress against alcohol abuse. Still others track the latest moves of the New temperance movement.

Beer industry executives find Alcohol Issues INSIGHTS to be both informative and highly readable. Our editors distill key points from often complex material. When the research raises questions, we ask them. When the conclusions don't match the data, we point that out. Expert contacts developed by our editors over the years provide additional legal and scientific perspective. A one year-subscription - that's 12 monthly issues plus 40 weekly updates - is priced at $510 dollars (add $15 outside of US.). As with all our newsletters, we offer a money-back guarantee: if Alcohol Issues INSIGHTS fails to meet your expectations, we will gladly refund the unused portion of your subscription.

 

 

Public health advocates refuse to give up the notion that alcohol beverage marketing/advertising cause people to drink, especially young people. They reject the notion that marketing primarily aims to alter brand choice, regardless of the clear economic stakes, and ignore the fact that drinking rates, at least in the US, have remained virtually unchanged for many decades despite the industry’s marketing bombardment. Some studies do find an “association” between ads and drinking, though that association tends not to be very strong. Others don’t even find an association. If a causal link can be established, these advocates fervently believe, ad (and other marketing) restrictions can be justified and should be broadly adopted. Such a finding would render industry self-regulation, which they deem ineffective, unnecessary, and the alcohol industry can thus be treated like the tobacco industry, the true motivation for many in public health.That’s clear from a special supplement to the March edition of the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs: “Alcohol Marketing and Youth Drinking: Is there a Causal Relationship?” Spoiler alert: Yes, there is. This determination “could have enormous implications for public health policy designed to prevent the onset of numerous non-communicable diseases [as] well as premature mortality.”…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2020
  • Volume 37
  • Issue # 5
Mixed Messages: Public Health Advocate-Researcher and NIAAA Official Weigh in on COVID In the early weeks of the coronavirus, neither public health advocates nor government officials at NIAAA spoke much publicly on the implications of deeming the alcohol beverage industry essential and (mostly) maintaining or even expanding access options to consumers. That changed earlier this week, when visible figures from both of those worlds surfaced in articles that appeared in The Hill, which closely covers Washington DC news and policy issues, and Newsweek. The Hill’s Alex Gangitano suggested that the current moves to accommodate consumers and “liberalize” access may last past the crisis. Not surprisingly, longtime advocate-researcher David Jernigan, of Boston U School of Public Health, offered a predictable warning: “The biggest problem is everything's happening with no eye on the public health impact of alcohol use.” He cited “a reported spike in domestic violence." Though stores are limiting toilet paper purchases, Jernigan also pointed out, they’re not capping alcohol buys. "This is a perfect storm of putting people at risk. Two, three years from now, you'll see an uptick. People are putting in place now patterns of drinking that will put them in trouble over time," Jernigan predicted.From another…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2020
  • Volume 37
  • Issue # 11
Predictably, the debate around restrictions of alcohol advertising increasingly shifts toward social media, where consumers, including underage youth, spend more of their time and the industry spends more of its money. Forbes just featured a new study that calls into question the notion that falling teen drinking rates can be attributed in part to youth spending an increasing amount of their time on social media, rather than in social contexts where drinking occurs. The authors linked increased time spent on social media and watching television among a sample of 7th to 11th graders to more positive “social norms” regarding alcohol and a modest increase in reported drinking behavior. The authors actually significantly hedged that conclusion by noting their findings “may imply” that social media/television use “promote social norms towards alcohol, subsequently increasing adolescents’ drinking behavior.” Regardless, the Forbes author used the finding as a springboard to explore the relatively open online environment when it comes to alcohol ads. Facebook’s policy, for example, advises that advertisers not target users under age 18, when the minimum age in the US is 21. The study’s author suggests: “The moment has come for social networks like Facebook and Instagram to exercise more control over…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2020
  • Volume 37
  • Issue # 5
The road to final 2020 Dietary Guidelines is a (very) long one, full of many opportunities for input, revisions and mischief as numerous industry members, bureaucrats, experts and others jockey for position and influence over what Americans (should) consume, or not. That’s even while much of the science surrounding diet remains wildly contradictory. Beer Institute got an early start in the process in late January. Newly named Senior Director of Health Policy and Regulatory Affairs Bill Young spoke briefly in Houston at a meeting of the guidelines’ advisory committee. He raised 4 points as the committee considers any revisions to the current guidelines. The guidelines, in Beer Institute’s view, should continue to: Provide “the clear advice” that drinking should be “in moderation” up to 1 drink/day for women 2/day for men. Emphasize the “variability in drinks” given the many different types, sizes and alcohol contents found in the beverage market. This includes use of the term “drink equivalent” of 0.6 oz of absolute alcohol. Advise against consuming alcohol on an empty stomach. Advise that certain people – underage, pregnant women, those with a family history of “concern” – should not drink at all. The Beer Institute received some support for…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2020
  • Volume 37
  • Issue # 1
Because coronary heart disease (CHD) and chronic kidney disease (CKD) “share many risk factors and pathophysiology, it is possible that moderate alcohol consumption may also reduce the risk of CKD,” observed Johns Hopkins-based researcher Casey Rebholz. And that’s just what she and her team found in a study of over 12,000 adults aged 45-64 over 24 years. Drinkers at every level had lower risk for CKD compared to never drinkers, the study found. Light drinkers, those who drank 1 or fewer per week, had a 12% reduced risk of CKD Those who drank 2-7 per week had a 20% reduced risk of CKD Those who drank 8-14 per week had a 29% reduced risk of CKD Even the heaviest drinkers, 15+ per week, had a 23% reduced risk of CKD This study separated out former drinkers to eliminate the “sick quitter” issue. After adjustment for numerous factors, including smoking and physical activity, “there was no significant association between being a former drinker and risk of incident CKD.” The authors concluded: “Consuming a low or moderate amount of alcohol may lower the risk of developing CKD. Therefore, moderate consumption of alcohol may not likely be harmful to the kidneys.” That’s a…

Publishing Info

  • Year 2020
  • Volume 37
  • Issue # 2
Monthly teen drinking rates continued to decrease in 2019, according to annual Monitoring the Future surveys done on behalf of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. But once again, the big story from health officials’ perspective, was the ongoing, significant and troubling increase in teen vaping, especially teen vaping of marijuana. Indeed, “past month marijuana vaping among 12th graders nearly doubled in a single year to 14% from 7.5%,” NIDA highlighted. Meanwhile, past month use of alcohol declined again amongst eighth graders, tenth graders and high school seniors. The long-term declines in teen drinking are remarkable, as AII has reported for many years, and as the table below makes clear. There were modest increases in the last year in “heavy episodic drinking” from 2018 to 2019 (among 8th and 12th graders), but once again the long-term declines are in the range of -53% to -71% across these grades. ...

Publishing Info

  • Year 2019
  • Volume 36
  • Issue # 12
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