Americans Drank, Smoked More In Pandemic

Many Americans seemingly self-medicated during the pandemic.

University of California researchers also found that Americans spent less time exercising, and more time in front of screens. The scientists polled more than 2,700 US adults, and asked them about five lifestyle behaviors. They found time spent on exercise decreased by more than 31 percent, screen time increased by more than 60 percent, alcohol consumption increased by more than 23 percent, and smoking increased by 9 percent. The average consumption of fast food dropped from 1.41 times per week to 0.96 times per week.

Study author Dr. Liwei Chen says, “We found that regulations to restrict non-essential activities and stay-at-home orders during the pandemic have had profoundly negative impacts on multiple lifestyle behaviors in American adults. As bad as these changes have been for all Americans, they disproportionately impact racial and ethnic minorities in the U.S., who already bear a higher disease burden from COVID-19.” (EurekAlert!)