The days of declining COVID-19 cases and deaths are unfortunately behind us. COVID-19 cases and deaths are once again increasing week over week as the Delta variant takes a foothold in the U.S. No, it’s not the failure of the vaccines but rather the failure of people to get vaccinated. It’s now the pandemic of the unvaccinated Americans.
The COVID-19 metrics are not the only numbers that are going in the wrong direction. Provisional data released by the National Center for Health Statistics this week reported that deaths from drug overdoses soared to more than 93,000 last year. The 2020 death toll is more than 21,000, or nearly 30 percent higher than in 2019, based on these data.
U.S. alcohol consumption increased dramatically in 2020 as some used drinking as a way to cope with stress and emotions during the pandemic. A Rand study found that women increased their heavy drinking episodes (four or more drinks within a couple of hours) by 41%. Will drinking return to its pre-pandemic level? Time will tell.
This Weekend Reading series begin with The Numbers Tell the Story – the disturbing trends in overdose deaths and alcohol use. Next check out It’s a Problem, to explore articles on the impacts of alcohol abuse. In It’s Not Alcohol, a series of articles look at Nonalcoholic Liver Disease – perhaps a pandemic in the making. Last but not least, do not miss Liverish – and my personal favorite, The World War II Campaign to Bring Organ Meats to the Dinner Table. And no, my parents never succeeded in getting me to eat liver and onions!
I hope you enjoy the following:
1. The Numbers Tell the Story
- NPR: Drug Overdoses Killed A Record Number Of Americans In 2020, Jumping By Nearly 30%
- Michigan Radio: Preliminary numbers show 16% jump in drug overdose deaths in Michigan last year
- Axios: America’s deepening drinking habit
- NPR: Alcohol Use Linked To Over 740,000 Cancer Cases Last Year, New Study Says
2. It’s a Problem
- NPR: Sharp, ‘Off The Charts’ Rise In Alcoholic Liver Disease Among Young Women
- The Atlantic: America Has a Drinking Problem
- New York Times: Alcohol Abuse Is on the Rise, but Doctors Too Often Fail to Treat It
- WebMD: Rethinking Your Post-COVID Relationship With Booze
3. It’s Not the Alcohol
- Medscape: Nonalcoholic Liver Disease ‘an Epidemic of the 21st Century’
- NIDKK: What is Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) & NASH?
- American Journal of Managed Care: Caffeinated or Decaffeinated, Any Type of Coffee Appears to Protect the Liver
- University of MI Health: How do sugary beverages affect the liver?
- University of MI Health: New Potential Therapy for Fatty Liver Disease
- The Atlantic: The World War II Campaign to Bring Organ Meats to the Dinner Table
- World Wide Words: What am I? Chopped Liver?
- New York Times: Taking the Mystery Out of French Pâté
- Food52: In Defense of the Liverwurst Sandwich
Enjoy your weekend!
Suzanne Daniels, Ph.D.
P.O. Box 1416
Birmingham, MI 48012
Office: (248) 792-2187
Email: [email protected]