Map: Study results show these counties are home to the heaviest drinkers

(NEXSTAR) – You may have an idea of ​​how much alcohol your community drinks. There may even be a certain sense of pride in how much or how little that is. But recently released data helps illustrate which areas of the US are prone to binge drinking and which are not.

Earlier this year, the University of Wisconsin’s Population Health Institute released its 2023 County Health Rankings and Roadmaps reportto raise awareness of factors that can impact health outcomes and inequalities across the country.

Researchers use numerous data points to determine length and quality of life from state to state. These factors include alcohol consumption, including reported excessive drinking.

To determine the frequency of binge drinking by state, the researchers used self-reported data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention System for monitoring behavioral risk factors. For the 2023 report, the University of Wisconsin used data from 2020 – the first year of the COVID pandemic.

Excessive drinking includes both binge drinking (four or more drinks at a time for women, five or more for men) and heavy drinking (eight or more drinks per week for women, fifteen or more for men).

Based on data from the CDC, the University of Wisconsin found that its own state of Wisconsin has the most binge drinking. Overall, 26% of adults in the state, where an MLB team is named in honor of its brewing industry, reported excessive drinking.

In western New York, 21% of people in Erie County reported excessive drinking. That number is 22% in Niagara County and 23% in Genesee County, the highest number of any county in the region.

The five states with the most binge drinking were mostly in the northern United States. After Wisconsin, the four states with the highest rates were Iowa, Montana, Nebraska, and North Dakota. Overall, 19 states had excessive drinking rates of 20% or more.

As the map below shows, in each state, at least 10% of the adult participants reported excessive drinking. Utah had the lowest rate at 12% – less than half of Wisconsin’s rate. States along the east coast also had the lowest rates, while levels on the other side of the country were slightly higher.

Not surprisingly, when the researchers reviewed county-level data, they found that nine of the 10 countries with the highest rates of adults reportedly drinking excessively were in Wisconsin. Columbia County, north of Madison, tops the list with 29%. Ozaukee County, north of Milwaukee, also reported 29%. Montana’s Sheridan County was third with 28%, a similar rate was reported by 18 other Wisconsin counties.

No county in Wisconsin reported a rate below 25%.

As expected, Utah has the county with the lowest rate of binge drinking: Utah County at 8%. Two others, Cache and Sanpete, ranked second lowest at 10%. Rounding out the list were two counties in Alabama, Greene and Perry, and five counties in Mississippi: Holmes, Humphreys, Leflore, Quitman, and Tunica.

The interactive map below shows the reported rates per county.

The University of Wisconsin also analyzed the number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities by state and county.

Although the proportion of adults who drink excessively is relatively low (18%), California had the highest number of alcohol-related fatalities between 2016 and 2020, at 5,185, according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Reporting system for death analysis. The District of Columbia reported 43 while Vermont reported 109.

Montana, where nearly one in four adults is reported to drink excessively, had the highest rate of alcohol-related fatalities at 46%. North Dakota was close behind at 41%, although both states reported fewer than 500 alcohol-related fatalities: 443 and 221, respectively.

Three states — Kansas, Mississippi, and Indiana — reported the lowest percentage of alcohol-related road fatalities. According to the County Health Rankings, alcohol was a role in 19% of traffic fatalities in these states.

“Excessive alcohol consumption is detrimental to the health and well-being of alcoholics, as well as their families, friends and communities,” the researchers said written down.

A recent study published in the Journal of American Medicine found that more Americans, especially women, are dying from alcohol-related deaths. According to Nexstar’s WPIX, the death rate in males increased by 12.5% ​​between 2018 and 2020, according to the CDC reports. For women, this rate was almost 15%.

Tom Vazquez

Tom Vazquez is a USTimeToday U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Tom Vazquez joined USTimeToday in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with Tom Vazquez by emailing

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