Canada Top Drinker in The World, WHO Report Reveals

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By Sounak Mukhopadhyay | May 15, 2014 10:13 AM EST

A recent survey by the World Health Organisation has revealed that Canadians drink more alcohol that most other people from other countries. The second in the list of top-drinkers is U.S.A. Interestingly, this is not something new for Canadian people. The Canadian drinking habits have been the same for a decade now. However, Canadians consume more litres of alcohol than the global average for every person.

REUTERS/Luke MacGregor
An employee poses with a case of twelve bottles of "Petrus 1988" wine owned by retired Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson, at Christie's auction house in London April 14, 2014. To take his mind off the pressure of "the beautiful game", Ferguson collected vintage wines that will be sold at auction starting in Hong Kong in May, Christie's said on Wednesday. Photograph taken April 14, 2014.

WHO noted in the "Global status report on alcohol and health 2014" that people aged 15 or over drink 6.2 litres of pure alcohol on an average every year. However, the average is even higher in Canada. During 2003-2005, a Canadian drank 7.8 litres of pure alcohol on an average every year. During 2008-2010, the figure slightly rose to 8.2 litres. Even though the figure is slightly lower than the average consumption across the WHO Region of the Americas, it is higher than the global average which is 6.2 litres per capita. CTV News reported that Canadians had shown consistency in drinking over the last decade.

Canadian men aged 15 or over consumed 18.8 litres of pure alcohol in 2010 while Canadian women aged 15 or over had 7.4 litres in the same year. The WHO report said that "binge-drinking", which is referred as "heavy episodic drinking" in the report, was the most harmful form of drinking for health. When a person consumes at least 60 grams or more of pure alcohol on at least one occasion in the last 30 days, it is called as heavy episodic drinking.

Around 16 per cent of drinkers aged 15 or over get engaged in heavy episodic drinking, according to the report. On the other hand, 23.1 per cent of Canadian drinkers get engaged in heavy episodic drinking whereas 31.2 per cent men and 14.7 per cent women get engaged in binge-drinking.

"The amount of drinking around the world is going up, especially in India and China, where incomes are rising and alcohol marketing is active," the WHO report indicated.

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(Photo: REUTERS/Luke MacGregor / )
An employee poses with a case of twelve bottles of "Petrus 1988" wine owned by retired Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson, at Christie's auction house in London April 14, 2014. To take his mind off the pressure of "the beautiful game", Ferguson collected vintage wines that will be sold at auction starting in Hong Kong in May, Christie's said on Wednesday. Photograph taken April 14, 2014.
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