Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) - A new study released by the website ‘Help Advisor’ states that Montana had the highest percentage (33.2 percent) of adults identified as binge drinkers aged 18 to 24 in 2021.

KGVO News spoke to Christian Worstel, senior writer for HealthAdvisor.com about the study.

In 2021 Montana led the Nation in Binge Drinkers ages 18 to 24

“Montana had the highest percentage of young adult binge drinkers in the United States in 2021, and the three-year rate shot up 113 percent in Montana which was the 12th highest rate in the U.S.”

Over a three-year period, Worstel said the tiny state of Rhode Island produced the largest increase in binge drinkers.

Rhode Island saw a 241 Percent Increase over a Three Year Period

“Rhode Island saw a 241 percent increase in binge drinking among 18 to 24-year-olds from 2019 to 2021,” he said. “That led the nation. The national average was about a 59 percent increase, which alone is pretty startling with a 59 percent increase over just a three-year period.”

According to the website study, many states marked a very unhealthy increase in binge drinking over the past years of the pandemic and beyond.

“Iowa, Washington, D.C., Pennsylvania, North Dakota, Vermont, Wisconsin, Connecticut, Colorado, Virginia, and South Dakota all joined Montana in states being with least a 100 percent or more increase. In addition, Montana had a 113 percent increase and did have the highest rate in the nation in 2021, which is the most recent data available. The CDC releases this data on a two-year delay cycle.”

Worstel said Montana has long been known to have a high percentage of binge drinkers. He explained the definition of a binge drinker.

Basically, Binge Drinking is simply 'Drinking to get Drunk'

“One in three young adults in Montana, that’s 33 percent, self-report as binge drinkers,” he said. “As defined by the CDC, it's five or more drinks for a male or four or more drinks for a female within one occasion, and they define an occasion as approximately two hours in loose terms. Basically, it's drinking to get drunk.  It's not just having a drink with dinner, but it's drinking with the intent of becoming intoxicated.”

All states with sufficient data averaged a 59% increase in binge drinking among young adults from 2019 to 2021.

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