Lifestyle & Belief

CDC: 1 in 13 pregnant women admit to drinking alcohol


An increase in pregnancy-related strokes in the United States is alarming, considering recent advancements in childbirth safety. Researchers believe the increase is due to a change in lifestyle, with one in every five pregnant women being obese.


Joe Raedle

Almost 8 percent of expectant mothers in the United States admit to abusing alcohol, a new study has found. The study, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, found that 1 in 13 pregnant women drink alcohol. Of those who admitted to drinking while pregnant, 1 in 5 said they went on a binge of at least four drinks, the Associated Press reported

The researchers analyzed national data from 2006 to 2010 on about 14,000 pregnant women and 330,000 non-pregnant women, HealthDay reported. The highest rates of alcohol use among pregnant women occurred in women who were: between the ages 35 and 44 (14.3 percent); college graduates (10 percent); employed (9.6 percent); or white (8.3 percent), according to HealthDay. 

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However, even though 10 percent of college graduates admitted to drinking while pregnant, lower levels of education were associated with increased binge drinking of all women, pregnant or not, HealthDay said. 

In June, a series of Danish studies made headlines for claiming that low and moderate drinking in early pregnancy may have no adverse affects on unborn babies. But the National Institutes of Health maintains that there is no "safe" amount of alcohol that a pregnant woman can drink. According to the NIH, drinking any amount of alcohol during pregnancy can put a baby at risk for mental retardation, abnormal heart structure or facial deformities.