Drinking Habit? Your Doctor Needs to Know, CDC Says

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NBC Nightly News
Brian Williams/Dr. Nancy Snyderman
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Video News Report
NBCUniversal Media, LLC.
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According to a 2014 report from the Centers for Disease Control, five out of six adults say no heath professional has ever brought up the issue of alcohol consumption, despite the fact that drinking too much causes several health problems.



"Drinking Habit? Your Doctor Needs to Know, CDC Says." Nancy Snyderman, correspondent. NBC Nightly News. NBCUniversal Media. 7 Jan. 2014. NBC Learn. Web. 12 August 2017.


Snyderman, N. (Reporter), & Williams, B. (Anchor). (2014, January 7). Drinking Habit? Your Doctor Needs to Know, CDC Says. [Television series episode]. NBC Nightly News. Retrieved from https://archives.nbclearn.com/portal/site/k-12/browse/?cuecard=68311


"Drinking Habit? Your Doctor Needs to Know, CDC Says" NBC Nightly News, New York, NY: NBC Universal, 01/07/2014. Accessed Sat Aug 12 2017 from NBC Learn: https://archives.nbclearn.com/portal/site/k-12/browse/?cuecard=68311


Drinking Habit? Your Doctor Needs to Know, CDC Says


As we said earlier, our health news tonight has to do with drinking. A new report from the Centers for Disease Control about how many millions of Americans drink too much and how rarely their doctors ever talk about it with them. We get our report from our chief medical editor Doctor Nancy Snyderman.


Journalist Gabrielle Glaser admits she used to unwind every night with two or even three glasses of wine. You just knew--


DR. SNYDERMAN: --you were going down a road you didn’t like.

GLASER: Yeah, I was going down a road that was rendering me less effective in the evening.

DR. SNYDERMAN: She managed to cut back on her own, and then wrote a book about women and their relationship with alcohol called Her Best-Kept Secret. A new report from the Centers for Disease Control says too many Americans are able to keep that secret because their doctors simply don’t ask about their drinking habits.

MAN: Cheers.

WOMAN: Cheers.

DR. SNYDERMAN: At least 38 million people in the United States drink too much and most are not alcoholics. Yet, three out of four binge drinkers say their doctors never discussed alcohol with them. Binge drinking is defined as consuming four or more drinks for women and five or more drinks for men within a two- to three-hour window. CDC guidelines encourage moderation, no more than two drinks a day for men, no more than one drink a day for women, but never during pregnancy and never by anyone under the age of 21. So, what is a drink? Five ounces of wine a day, 12 ounces of beer a day, and no more than 1.5 ounces of 80 proof liquor a day. The report is a call to action directing health care professionals to have this conversation with their patients because if they don’t ask, patients won't tell.

DR. TOMAS FRIEDEN (Centers for Disease Control): It doesn’t have to take more than five, 10 or at most 15 minutes, and what’s remarkable is that brief interview can result in a substantial reduction of problem drinking for a long period of time.

DR. SNYDERMAN: These conversations are crucial because drinking too much can lead to heart disease, dementia, breast cancer, unintended pregnancy, all kinds of violence, domestic problems. You do not have to be an alcoholic to have a problem and that is the take home message tonight, Brian.

WILLIAMS: Thank you, Doc, as always.


WILLIAMS: Nancy Snyderman, here with us.