More Americans Drink Beer Than Wine: Report

Which alcoholic beverage is preferred more: Beer, or wine?

According to a new Gallup report, Americans on a whole are more likely to opt for a cold one.

However, it might be a generational -- and gender-based -- preference. People ages 55 and older are more likely to choose wine, while their younger counterparts are more likely to choose beer. And males are more likely to opt for beer, while females are more likely to opt for wine.

Thirty-nine percent of Americans surveyed said that they drink beer the most of any alcoholic beverage, followed by 35 percent of Americans saying they drink wine the most and 22 percent of Americans saying they drink liquor the most.

Twelve percent of people surveyed said that they had consumed eight or more alcoholic beverages in the week prior, while 52 percent said they had one to seven drinks in the week prior and 34 percent said they hadn't had any alcohol in the week prior.

The average number of drinks consumed in a week was 4.2, according to the report.

The report also shows that 22 percent think they drink too much, with younger men being the most likely to admit drinking too much (36 percent), compared with 20 percent of younger women. Meanwhile, 18 percent of older men said that they drank too much, compared with 8 percent of older women.

According to government guidelines, moderate alcohol consumption is defined as one drink a day for women, and two drinks a day for men. At moderate levels, alcohol consumption has been linked with health benefits -- particularly consumption of red wine -- including improved health for women as they get older, a decreased rheumatoid arthritis risk, a higher quality of life and better heart health.

However, it's important that these health benefits were only shown to come from moderate alcohol consumption -- drinking too much can raise your risk of liver damage, cancers and psychological problems, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported.