Alcohol abstinence and drinking among African women: data from the World Health Surveys

Martinez, Priscilla; Røislien, Jo; Naidoo, Nirmala; Clausen, Thomas
January 2011
BMC Public Health;2011, Vol. 11 Issue 1, p160
Academic Journal
Background: Alcohol use is increasing among women in Africa, and comparable information about women's current alcohol use is needed to inform national and international health policies relevant to the entire population. This study aimed to provide a comparative description of alcohol use among women across 20 African countries. Methods: Data were collected as part of the WHO World Health Survey using standardized questionnaires. In total, 40,739 adult women were included in the present study. Alcohol measures included lifetime abstinence, current use (=1 drink in previous week), heavy drinking (15+ drinks in the previous week) and risky single-occasion drinking (5+ drinks on at least one day in the previous week). Country-specific descriptives of alcohol use were calculated, and K-means clustering was performed to identify countries with similar characteristics. Multiple logistic regression models were fitted for each country to identify factors associated with drinking status. Results: A total of 33,841 (81%) African women reported lifetime abstinence. Current use ranged from 1% in Malawi to 30% in Burkina Faso. Among current drinkers, heavy drinking varied between 4% in Ghana to 41% in Chad, and risky single-occasion drinking ranged from <1% in Mauritius to 58% in Chad. Increasing age was associated with increased odds of being a current drinker in about half of the countries. Conclusions: A variety of drinking patterns are present among African women with lifetime abstention the most common. Countries with hazardous consumption patterns require serious attention to mitigate alcohol-related harm. Some similarities in factors related to alcohol use can be identified between different African countries, although these are limited and highlight the contextual diversity of female drinking in Africa.


Related Articles

  • Alcohol accounts for a high proportion of premature mortality in central and eastern Europe. Jürgen Rehm; Urszula Sulkowska; Marta Manczuk; Paolo Boffetta; John Powles; Svetlana Popova; Witold Zatonski // International Journal of Epidemiology;Apr2007, Vol. 36 Issue 2, p458 

    Background There is a west–east mortality gradient in Europe, more pronounced in men. The objective of this article was to quantify the contribution of alcohol use to the gap in premature adult mortality between three old (France, Sweden and United Kingdom) and four new (Czech Republic,...

  • INTERNATIONAL HEALTH REGULATIONS.  // Weekly Epidemiological Record;8/18/2000, Vol. 75 Issue 33, p272 

    Presents a notification of diseases received in August 2000 by the World Health Organization. Information on the cases and deaths from cholera in Hong Kong, China.

  • DRUG DECLINE.  // Scholastic Choices;Sep2009, Vol. 25 Issue 1, p3 

    The article reports on the survey conducted by the Institute for the Prevention of Alcohol and Drug Problems and the World Health Organization (WHO) which revealed the decline in the number of teenagers who use marijuana in the U.S., Canada, and Europe in 2006.


    The article offers information on the World Health Organization (WHO) survey published on March 3, 2014 which shows that many of the surveyed countries lack the capacity to prevent and treat hearing loss.

  • Obesity and mental disorders in the general population: results from the world mental health surveys. Scott, K. M.; Bruffaerts, R.; Simon, G. E.; Alonso, J.; Angermeyer, M.; de Girolamo, G.; Demyttenaere, K.; Gasquet, I.; Haro, J. M.; Karam, E.; Kessler, R. C.; Levinson, D.; Medina Mora, M. E.; Oakley Browne, M. A.; Ormel, J.; Villa, J. P.; Uda, H.; Von Korff, M. // International Journal of Obesity;Jan2008, Vol. 32 Issue 1, p192 

    Objectives:(1) To investigate whether there is an association between obesity and mental disorders in the general populations of diverse countries, and (2) to establish whether demographic variables (sex, age, education) moderate any associations observed.Design:Thirteen cross-sectional, general...

  • Under-18s in alcohol epidemic.  // Therapy Today;Jul2008, Vol. 19 Issue 6, p11 

    This article reports on the prevalence of alcohol dependence among people under 18 in Great Britain. Figures show that 38 percent of men and 16 percent of women can be classed according to World Health Organization standards as having an alcohol use disorder. The figures also reveal that the...

  • Weekday but not weekend alcohol consumption before pregnancy influences alcohol cessation during pregnancy. Palma, Silvia; Pardo-Crespo, Rosa; Mariscal, Marcial; Perez-Iglesias, Rocío; Llorca, Javier; Delgado-Rodríguez, Miguel // European Journal of Public Health;Aug2007, Vol. 17 Issue 4, p394 

    Background: Cantabria has the highest prevalence of alcohol consumption among women in Spain. Patterns of alcohol consumption before pregnancy were assessed as a determinant of alcohol cessation in pregnant women in Cantabria. Methods: Survey on a random sample of women delivering for the period...

  • Alcohol Use and Transactional Sex among Women in South Africa: Results from a Nationally Representative Survey. Magni, Sarah; Christofides, Nicola; Johnson, Saul; Weiner, Renay // PLoS ONE;12/18/2015, Vol. 10 Issue 12, p1 

    Background: Transactional sex is a risk factor for HIV infection. Alcohol use may increase the risk of transactional sex. No nationally-representative studies have examined the relationship between multiple dimensions of alcohol use and transactional sex in women in South Africa. The aim of the...

  • HIV/AIDS, WHO Western Pacific Region, revised 1999 estimates.  // Weekly Epidemiological Record;8/18/2000, Vol. 75 Issue 33, p266 

    Focuses on the survey on HIV and AIDS epidemic in the Western Pacific region as of 1999 by the World Health Organization. Estimates on the number of HIV infected individuals; Pattern of HIV transmission; Factors influencing the decrease of AIDS incidence in Australia and New Zealand.


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics