Commitment to Moderation & Responsibility
Drinking in Moderation
The USDA 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which forms the basis of federal nutrition policy and programs, defines moderate drinking as up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men.
DISCUS is a MyPlate National Strategic Partner in the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (CNPP) Nutrition Communicators Network.
As stated by the Dietary Guidelines, a “drink-equivalent” is defined as 1.5 fluid ounces of 80-proof distilled spirits (40 percent alcohol) such as rum, vodka, gin, or whiskey; 12 fluid ounces of regular beer (5 percent alcohol); or 5 fluid ounces of wine (12 percent alcohol). Each drink-equivalent contains the same amount of alcohol, 0.06 fluid ounces of alcohol, and has the same effect on the body. That’s why, when it comes to drinking alcohol, there is no beverage of moderation, only the practice of moderation.
Scientific research has shown that moderate alcohol consumption is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and all-cause mortality. However, no one should choose to drink to achieve potential health benefits and even moderate drinking may pose risks for some individuals.
According to the Dietary Guidelines, some individuals should not drink beverage alcohol, including those who are unable to control the amount they drink, individuals under 21 years of age, women who are pregnant or who may become pregnant, individuals taking certain over-the-counter or prescription medications, those with certain medical conditions, and individuals who plan to drive or take part in other activities that require skill, coordination, and alertness.
The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) recommends that adults who have questions regarding alcohol and health should discuss the potential risks and potential benefits with his/her physician who can determine what is best for that person based on individual risk factors, such as family history, genetics and lifestyle.
DISCUS does not recommend that people drink beverage alcohol for potential health benefits. Alcohol abuse can cause serious health problems.