28 August 2015 In Diabetes
OBJECTIVE: Observational studies indicate that moderate levels of alcohol consumption may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. In addition to providing an updated summary of the existing literature, this meta-analysis explored whether reductions in risk may be the product of misclassification bias. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: A systematic search was undertaken, identifying studies that reported a temporal association between alcohol consumption and the risk of type 2 diabetes. No restrictions were placed upon the language or date of publication. Non-English publications were, where necessary, translated using online translation tools. Models were constructed using fractional polynomial regression to determine the best-fitting dose-response relationship between alcohol intake and type 2 diabetes, with a priori testing of sex and referent group interactions. RESULTS: Thirty-eight studies met the selection criteria, representing 1,902,605 participants and 125,926 cases of type 2 diabetes. A conventional noncurrent drinking category was reported by 33 studies, while five reported a never-drinking category. Relative to combined abstainers, reductions in the risk of type 2 diabetes were present at all levels of alcohol intake
05 March 2015 In Cardiovascular System
BACKGROUND: Alcohol consumption is a major global risk factor for mortality and morbidity. Much discussion has revolved around the diverse findings on the complex relationship between alcohol consumption and the leading cause of death and disability, ischemic heart disease (IHD). METHODS: We conducted a systematic search of the literature up to August 2014 using Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines to identify meta-analyses and observational studies examining the relationship between alcohol drinking, drinking patterns, and IHD risk, in comparison to lifetime abstainers. In a narrative review we have summarized the many meta-analyses published in the last 10 years, discussing the role of confounding and experimental evidence. We also conducted meta-analyses examining episodic heavy drinking among on average moderate drinkers. RESULTS: The narrative review showed that the use of current abstainers as the reference group leads to systematic bias. With regard to average alcohol consumption in relation to lifetime abstainers, the relationship is clearly J-shaped, supported by short-term experimental evidence and similar associations within strata of potential confounders, except among smokers. Women experience slightly stronger beneficial associations and also a quicker upturn to a detrimental effect at lower levels of average alcohol consumption compared to men. There was no evidence that chronic or episodic heavy drinking confers a beneficial effect on IHD risk. People with alcohol use disorder have an elevated risk of IHD (1.5- to 2-fold). Results from our quantitative meta-analysis showed that drinkers with average intake of
06 May 2014 In Cancer
BACKGROUND: Alcohol is capable of traversing the blood-brain barrier and is thus a possible risk factor for brain cancer. Several epidemiological studies have been published on the issue, a number of those during recent years, with inconsistent findings. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We performed a systematic literature search in the Medline and EMBASE databases. We found a total of 19 studies providing risk estimates for total alcohol or specific alcoholic beverages. Pooled estimates of the relative risks (RR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated using random-effects models. RESULTS: The pooled RR of brain cancer for alcohol drinkers versus non-drinkers was 0.97 (95% CI 0.82-1.15; based on 12 studies). Moderate (
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