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CDC: 38 Million Americans Drink Too Much Alcohol

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- A new report from the Centers for Disease Control shows tens of millions of Americans are drinking too much alcohol. And, the report finds that healthcare providers are not doing enough to tell people about the risks.

The CDC reports at least 38 million Americans drink too much.

While they say most are not alcoholics, excessive drinking can cause health and social problems.

The CDS recommends "all" adults have an honest chat with their doctors.

Researchers say alcohol screening and counseling can reduce a binge drinker's consumption by as much as 25 percent.

"There are several different patterns of problem drinking. One is binge drinking. A second is heavy drinking throughout the week ... averaging more than two per day for men ... more than one per day for women," said Dr. Tom Frieden, CDC director.

Excessive drinking can cause liver disase, infections and increase cancer risk.

Under the Affordable Care Act, most health insurance plans should now cover the costs of alcohol screening and counseling.

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