To estimate the prevalence of different categories of average volume of alcohol consumption for World Health Organization (WHO) regions. To check how the monitored indicator of average volume relates to prevalence of alcohol dependence. To discuss conclusions for establishing a global monitoring system.
Prevalence of different categories of average volume of alcohol consumption was estimated by a triangulation of survey results, production, and sales figures. The relation between average volume of consumption and prevalence of alcohol dependence was analysed by regression techniques.
Alcohol consumption varies widely by sex, age, and region. It can predict prevalence of dependence with about 74% of the variation of the latter explained.
With current data, global monitoring of alcohol is possible. However, more and better surveys are necessary for the future. They should include patterns of drinking to improve prediction of other health outcomes like coronary heart disease (CHD) and accidents.