3. GOOD HEALTH AND WELL-BEING

More women are drinking themselves sick. The Biden administration is concerned

More women are drinking themselves sick. The Biden administration is concerned
Written by ZJbTFBGJ2T

More women are drinking themselves sick. The Biden administration is concerned  Detroit News

More women are drinking themselves sick. The Biden administration is concerned

Alcohol Use Disorder Among Women: A Growing Concern

Introduction

When Karla Adkins looked in the rearview mirror of her car one morning nearly 10 years ago, she noticed the whites of her eyes had turned yellow. She was 36 at the time and working as a physician liaison for a hospital system on the South Carolina coast, where she helped build relationships among doctors. Privately, she had struggled with heavy drinking since her early 20s, long believing that alcohol helped calm her anxieties. She understood that the yellowing of her eyes was evidence of jaundice. Even so, the prospect of being diagnosed with alcohol-related liver disease wasn’t her first concern.

After years of heavy drinking to ease her anxiety, Karla Adkins nearly died from liver failure 10 years ago.

“Honestly, the No. 1 fear for me was someone telling me I could never drink again,” said Adkins, who lives in Pawleys Island, a coastal town about 30 miles south of Myrtle Beach. But the drinking had caught up with her: Within 48 hours of that moment in front of the rearview mirror, she was hospitalized, facing liver failure. “It was super fast,” Adkins said.

The Growing Trend Among Women

Historically, alcohol use disorder has disproportionately affected men. But recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on deaths from excessive drinking shows that rates among women are climbing faster than they are among men. The Biden administration considers this trend alarming, with one new estimate predicting women will account for close to half of alcohol-associated liver disease costs in the U.S. by 2040, a $66 billion total price tag.

The Role of Marketing and Culture

It’s a high-priority topic for the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Agriculture, which together will release updated national dietary guidelines next year. But with marketing for alcoholic beverages increasingly geared toward women, and social drinking already a huge part of American culture, change isn’t something everyone may be ready to raise a glass to.

The Risks of Alcohol Use

“This is a touchy topic,” said Rachel Sayko Adams, a research associate professor at the Boston University School of Public Health. “There is no safe level of alcohol use,” she said. “That’s, like, new information that people didn’t want to know.”

Over the past 50 years, women have increasingly entered the workforce and delayed motherhood, which likely has contributed to the problem as women historically drank less when they became mothers.

The Impact of COVID-19 and Social Media

More recently, the COVID-19 pandemic “significantly exacerbated” binge-drinking, said George Koob, director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism at the National Institutes of Health, as people used alcohol to cope with stress. That is particularly true of women, who are more likely to drink alcohol because of stress than men, he said.

But women are also frequently the focus of gender-targeted advertising for alcoholic beverages. The growth of rosé sales and low-calorie wines, for example, has exploded in recent years. New research published by the International Journal of Drug Policy in February found that the “pinking of products is a tactic commonly used by the alcohol industry to target the female market.”

Also at play is the emergence of a phenomenon largely perpetuated by women on social media that makes light of drinking to deal with the difficulties of motherhood. The misperception of “mommy wine culture,” said Adams, is that “if you can drink in a normal way, a moderate way, if you can handle your alcohol, you’re fine.”

The Need for Action

And while it’s unclear to what extent memes and online videos influence women’s drinking habits, the topic merits further study, said Adams, who with colleagues last year found that women without children at age 35 are still at the highest risk for binge-drinking and alcohol use disorder symptoms among all age groups of women. But over the past two decades, the research concluded, the risk is escalating for both childless women and mothers.

These factors at play, coupled with the pressure to fit in, can make excessive drinking a difficult conversation to broach. “It’s a very taboo topic,” Adams said.

The Future Outlook

Public health and addiction experts fear that alcohol-related liver disease among women will become a costly issue for the nation to address. Women accounted for 29% of all costs associated with the disease in the U.S. in 2022 and are expected to account for 43% by 2040, estimated a new analysis published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology in February.

National dietary guidelines advise women to drink no more than one alcoholic drink a day. Those guidelines are up for a five-year review next year by the USDA and HHS, which has called a special committee to examine, among other questions, the relationship between alcohol consumption and cancer risks. The report will be made public in 2025.

A Personal Journey of Recovery

It’s a topic close to Adkins’ heart. She now works as a coach to help others — mostly women — stop drinking, and said the pandemic prompted her to publish a book about her near-death experience from liver failure. And while Adkins lives with cirrhosis, this September will mark 10 years since her last drink. “The amazing thing is, you can’t get much worse from where I got,” said Adkins. “My hope is really to change the narrative.”

SDGs, Targets, and Indicators

  1. SDG 3: Good Health and Well-being

    • Target 3.5: Strengthen the prevention and treatment of substance abuse, including narcotic drug abuse and harmful use of alcohol.
    • Indicator 3.5.1: Coverage of treatment interventions (pharmacological, psychosocial, and rehabilitation and aftercare services) for substance use disorders.
  2. SDG 5: Gender Equality

    • Target 5.1: End all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere.
    • Target 5.5: Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic, and public life.
    • Indicator 5.5.1: Proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments and local governments.
  3. SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities

    • Target 10.2: By 2030, empower and promote the social, economic, and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion or economic or other status.
    • Indicator 10.2.1: Proportion of people living below 50 percent of median income, by age, sex, and persons with disabilities.

Explanation:

1. SDG 3: Good Health and Well-being is addressed in the article as it discusses the impact of alcohol-related liver disease on women’s health. The article highlights the need to strengthen the prevention and treatment of substance abuse, including harmful use of alcohol, which is Target 3.5 under SDG 3. The article also mentions the coverage of treatment interventions for substance use disorders as an indicator (Indicator 3.5.1) to measure progress towards this target.

2. SDG 5: Gender Equality is connected to the issues discussed in the article. The article highlights the increasing rates of alcohol-related liver disease among women and the impact of gender-targeted advertising for alcoholic beverages. Targets 5.1 and 5.5 under SDG 5 are relevant to these issues as they aim to end discrimination against women and ensure their full participation and equal opportunities in decision-making. The proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments and local governments (Indicator 5.5.1) can be used to measure progress towards these targets.

3. SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities is also relevant to the article as it discusses the disproportionate impact of alcohol-related liver disease on women and the need for social, economic, and political inclusion. Target 10.2 aims to empower and promote the inclusion of all individuals, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion, or economic status. The proportion of people living below 50 percent of median income, by age, sex, and persons with disabilities (Indicator 10.2.1) can be used to measure progress towards this target.

Table: SDGs, Targets, and Indicators

SDGs Targets Indicators
SDG 3: Good Health and Well-being Target 3.5: Strengthen the prevention and treatment of substance abuse, including narcotic drug abuse and harmful use of alcohol. Indicator 3.5.1: Coverage of treatment interventions (pharmacological, psychosocial, and rehabilitation and aftercare services) for substance use disorders.
SDG 5: Gender Equality Target 5.1: End all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere. Indicator 5.5.1: Proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments and local governments.
SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities Target 10.2: By 2030, empower and promote the social, economic, and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion or economic or other status. Indicator 10.2.1: Proportion of people living below 50 percent of median income, by age, sex, and persons with disabilities.

Behold! This splendid article springs forth from the wellspring of knowledge, shaped by a wondrous proprietary AI technology that delved into a vast ocean of data, illuminating the path towards the Sustainable Development Goals. Remember that all rights are reserved by SDG Investors LLC, empowering us to champion progress together.

Source: detroitnews.com

 

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