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Consumer/Nutrition Groups Urge Obama Administration and Congress to Update Alcohol Policies for the 21st Century
Date:4/23/2009

lines defines as moderate drinking.

"Those consumers who choose to drink absolutely need alcohol and calorie information per serving to help them comply with recommendations in the Dietary Guidelines," said Sally Greenberg, Executive Director of the National Consumers League. "Without it, alcohol consumers continue to be left in the dark."

The alcohol platform encourages HHS to add specific objectives to the upcoming Healthy People 2020 national health goals that reflect the current scientific knowledge about the calorie content of alcoholic beverages. Because alcohol is metabolized quite differently from these other macronutrients and provides 7 calories per gram compared to 4 calories per gram for carbohydrates, increased access to alcohol content information through nutrition counseling and government education initiatives is needed both to combat the obesity epidemic and to reduce alcohol-related mortality resulting from hypertension, liver disease and certain cancers, as well as injury.

"To encourage weight management and reduce the health risks associated with alcohol requires that the 55 percent of adult Americans who drink have the information they need to make responsible decisions," said Barbara J. Moore, Ph.D., president of Shape Up America!, "Anything less is a setback for public health."

Addressing the pervasive problem of underage drinking, the platform calls on Congress to pass H.R. 1028 -- the "Support 21 Act of 2009" -- which allocates an additional $35.5 million to federal and state efforts to reduce underage drinking. Recognizing that lowering the drinking age is not the answer, the bill focuses on delaying alcohol use through education and a stronger focus within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on disseminating research on effective strategies to reduce underage drinking. The bill also calls for a National Academies of Science report on a
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SOURCE Shape Up America!
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