Liquor Laboratory

How Much Does The Average American Drink? (2024 Best Edition)

How much does the average American drink

Last Updated on February 22, 2024 by Lydia Martin

Approximately 95,000 alcohol consumers in the United States die from alcohol-related issues and accidents, making it among the country’s leading preventable causes of death. With 85.6% of the adult population claiming that they drank alcohol once in their life, how much does the average American drink? 

How Much Does the Average American Drink? 

How Much Does The Average American Drink

Americans’ average alcohol consumption amounts to 494 drinks per year, 9.5 drinks per week, and 1.35 drinks per day [1].

Surveys conducted among the United States residents show an increased alcohol consumption due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Although most American consumers drink from more than one alcohol category, some stick to only one alcoholic drink of their choice.

With 39% of adult consumers preferring beer over wine or spirits, it remains the most popular alcoholic beverage.

Read: How Much Alcohol To Carry In An International Flight

Per Capita Consumption

Per Capita Consumption

Americans Average Alcohol Consumption


  • The daily consumption of at least 30% of American adults amounts to 1.35 drinks or less per day.
  • According to Aaron White, a senior advisor to the director of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), the number could reach 1.94 drinks per day.
  • By contrast, 10% of American drinkers take a little more than ten drinks per day. This percentage is equivalent to 24 million adults [2].


  • American drinkers consumed an average of 9.5 drinks per week.
  • It is more than the weekly alcohol intake suggested by the NIAAA for women who should not exceed seven drinks per week.
  • But according to White, the numbers could reach up to 13.6 drinks per week when adjusting for drinkers over 18 years old.
  • On the other hand, the top 10% of American consumers could reach 74 drinks per week.


  • American drinkers consumed up to 494 drinks per year, but it could reach up to 705 drinks.
  • The overall annual analysis of per capita alcohol consumption indicated a 0.8% increase from 2018 with 2.36 gallons to 2019 with 2.38 gallons.
  • Although there is a decrease in sixteen States and no changes in the two States, records have shown an increase in thirty-two States.

Read: Total Percentage of Americans That Drink Alcohol

Per Alcohol Type

Per Alcohol Type


  • 31% of alcohol consumers only choose wine as their alcoholic beverage.
  • It includes women from 55 years old and older, which also contributes to rising statistics of alcohol consumption.
  • The year 2018 has 900 million gallons of wine consumed by US residents.
  • According to the report published by Silicon Valley Bank State of the Wine Industry, there is a 3.6% increase in the sales of 750mL wine bottles from 2020 to 2021.


  • Next to beer and wine, 27% of alcohol consumers drank spirits, including a high percentage of men from 18 to 34 years old.
  • The recorded liquor consumption among US residents amounted to 570 million gallons in 2018.
  • The top five liquor categories for 2021 were tequila and mezcal, cordials, brandy and cognac, American whiskey, and vodka.
  • There is also a significant growth in spirits, ranging from $30 to $99.

Per Gender


Men, How much does the average American drink?
  • Overall, there is a higher percentage of drinking men (63%) than women (57%) in the United States.
  • Males tend to drink around 19 liters of alcoholic beverages per year, with beer as their preferred drink over wine or liquor.
  • Researchers also found that men are most likely to drink nearly three times more than women. However, 28% of men reportedly abstained from drinking.


  • Surveys have shown the increasing number of women who consumed alcohol in the past decade.
  • The average alcohol consumption for women amounts to 6.7 liters per year, with the majority preferring wine instead of beer and spirits.
  • About 90% of women consumers claimed to have seven drinks or less per week, while 38% abstained for the last twelve months.

How Much Does the Average American Drink In A Day?

How Much Should You Drink In A Day?

Men should drink two shots or less of distilled spirit in a day, while women should only have one shot or less.

This moderate drinking can help you avoid alcohol-related accidents and many other serious health problems.

Prolonged excessive alcohol consumption can lead to stroke, heart disease, liver cancer, and high blood pressure. 

Maintaining a small and regular amount of alcohol intake is also important. Sudden change in the drinking pattern may also lead to negative health issues.

Related Posts:

FAQs Related to How Much Does the Average American Drink?

What constitutes the average American’s drinking habits?

The average American’s drinking habits include consumption of various beverages such as water, soda, coffee, tea, alcohol, and other beverages.

How much water does the average American drink?

The average water intake can vary widely among individuals based on factors such as age, gender, body weight, physical activity level, and climate.

However, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine recommend that men consume about 3.7 liters (125 ounces) of total water per day and women consume about 2.7 liters (91 ounces) of total water per day, which includes water obtained from beverages and food.

Actual water intake from beverages alone may vary, but it’s generally recommended that individuals drink enough water to stay adequately hydrated, which can help maintain proper bodily functions and overall health.

How much soda does the average American consume?

As of my last update, the average soda consumption in the United States was around 38.87 gallons per person per year, according to data from the Beverage Marketing Corporation.

However, this figure may have changed over time due to shifting consumer preferences, health concerns, and industry trends.

Efforts to promote healthier beverage choices and reduce sugar intake have led some individuals to decrease their consumption of sugary sodas in favor of alternatives such as water, sparkling water, or unsweetened beverages.

What is the average alcohol consumption among Americans?

Alcohol consumption varies among individuals and can depend on factors such as age, gender, cultural norms, and personal preferences. According to data from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), as of my last update, approximately 55.3% of adults aged 18 and older reported that they drank alcohol in the past month.

Among those who reported drinking, the average number of drinks consumed per week was around 3.6 for men and 1.9 for women. However, it’s important to note that alcohol consumption patterns can vary widely among individuals, and excessive drinking can have serious health consequences.

It’s recommended that individuals drink alcohol in moderation, if at all, and adhere to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which advise limiting alcohol intake to moderate levels (up to one drink per day for women and up to two drinks per day for men).

How does alcohol consumption differ by age group?

Alcohol consumption patterns vary across different age groups, influenced by factors such as social norms, life stage, and individual preferences.

Generally, younger adults tend to have higher rates of alcohol consumption, particularly in social settings such as college or university environments where binge drinking may be more prevalent. As individuals age, alcohol consumption tends to decrease, with older adults often drinking more moderately and responsibly.

However, there can be exceptions to these trends, and individual drinking behaviors may vary widely within age groups.

Additionally, changes in societal attitudes, economic factors, and public health initiatives can influence alcohol consumption patterns across different age demographics over time.

What are the health implications of excessive alcohol consumption?

Excessive alcohol consumption can lead to various health issues including liver disease, heart problems, mental health disorders, addiction, and an increased risk of accidents and injuries.

How many drinks per week is considered an alcoholic?

It is considered alcoholic for men who take more than fifteen drinks and women who take more than eight drinks per week. A drink has different definitions based on the type of alcoholic beverage.

Is there a difference between a heavy drinker and an alcoholic?

Yes, there are a few differences between a heavy drinker and an alcoholic. Heavy drinkers can stop without withdrawal and are not physically dependent on alcohol. 

Does the US drink a lot?

The drinking habits in the United States vary, and while some individuals choose to consume alcohol regularly, the overall perception of whether the U.S. drinks a lot depends on cultural, regional, and individual factors.

What are the 4 types of drinker?

The four types of drinkers are often categorized as social drinkers, moderate drinkers, heavy drinkers, and binge drinkers. Social drinkers consume alcohol in social settings without negative consequences, moderate drinkers have a controlled and balanced approach to alcohol, heavy drinkers exceed recommended limits regularly, and binge drinkers consume large quantities in a short period.

So, How Much Does The Average American Drink?

So, how much does the average American drink? An average American consumes one to two shots of an alcoholic beverage daily.

The majority of these alcohol consumers are men, and they prefer beer more than wine or liquor. 

However, an increasing number of women have consumed alcohol in the past few years, with wine as their most preferred drink.


  1. How many alcoholic drinks are too many per week?
  2. Think you drink a lot? This chart will tell you.
Lumint ad Side Bar
Flex Ad Side Bar