Study: Alcohol Most Dangerous Drug

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Most people agree that drugs are bad, but some British researchers have found that alcohol is most dangerous to your health and lifestyle.

The new study conducted by a team of British scientists is abuzz on the Internet.

After evaluating drugs like alcohol, cocaine, heroin and marijuana, the team found that overall, alcohol is most dangerous to individual users and society as a whole.

Hardcore drugs like heroin, crack cocaine and crystal meth are the deadliest drugs. However, when researchers analyzed several categories -- the addictive nature of drugs, how they harm the body, their role in tearing families apart and economic costs -- alcohol far exceeded all the others.

"Unquestionably the reason it's so harmful is because so many people use it," said Dr. David Nutt, who lead the study. "So many people are dependent on it, so many people get into trouble with it."

The World Health Organization estimates alcohol abuse is responsible for 2.5 million deaths a year. That number includes heart and liver disease, suicides, cancer and auto accidents -- like one in North Carolina that claimed the life of a 20-year-old aspiring ballerina. The driver who hit her had a blood alcohol level more than twice the legal limit.

Researchers hope their study causes governments to rethink the way they classify drugs. One researcher said they should consider more education programs and possibly raising the price of alcohol, so it isn't as widely available.

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