26 January 2022 In General Health

BACKGROUND: Both alcohol use and weight status have been linked to increased mortality risk, but evidence of their joint effect is limited. The goal of this study was to examine the combined effects of alcohol and weight status (BMI classes: underweight, normal, overweight, obesity) on mortality using nationally representative data.

METHODS: Using data from public-use National Health Interview Survey-Linked Mortality Files (NHIS-LMF), 2001-2011, linked to prospective mortality follow-up through December 2015, we used age-period-cohort Cox proportional hazards models to examine all-cause and cause-specific mortality associated with the joint effects of alcohol use and BMI on 209,317 individuals aged 35-85.

RESULTS: Individuals with an underweight BMI status had higher all-cause and cause-specific mortality risks than those with a normal BMI status and light/moderate alcohol intake. All-cause mortality risks were 148% (hazard ratio [HR] 2.48, 95% CI 1.60-3.83) higher in underweight heavy drinkers than light/moderate drinkers with normal BMI status. Obese heavy drinkers had a 16% higher chance of dying from all-cause mortality (HR 1.16, 95% CI 1.00-1.35). Individuals in the unknown alcohol and BMI category have a higher chance of death from all-cause (HR 1.35, 95% CI 1.14-1.59) or cause-specific (CVD HR 1.75, 95% CI 1.14-2.69 and Cancer HR 1.33, 95% CI 1.01-1.76).

CONCLUSIONS: Alcohol drinking levels result in heightened all-cause and cause-specific mortality risks; the risks are compounded among underweight, obese, and unknown BMI individuals across all or cause-specific mortality.

26 January 2022 In Cardiovascular System

OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to investigate the association between alcohol consumption and the prevalence of stroke in Chinese adults aged 40 years and over.

METHOD: We conducted a cross-sectional analysis among 113,573 Chinese adults aged >/= 40 years in the China National Stroke Prevention Project (2014-2015) to examine correlations of alcohol consumption with the prevalence of stroke. Logistic regression models were used to calculate odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), controlling for various confounders, e.g., gender, age, smoking, physical activity and other health conditions.

RESULTS: Within the study population, a total of 12,753 stroke survivors were identified. The prevalence of light to moderate and of heavy alcohol consumption was 10.1% and 5.7% respectively. The multivariate logistic regression results show that light to moderate alcohol consumption was associated with reduced risk of stroke of all types [0.91 (95%CI: 0.85-0.97)] and of ischemic stroke [0.90 (0.84-0.97)]. No association was found between alcohol consumption and hemorrhagic stroke. Compared with abstainers, the adjusted ORs of all stroke were 0.83 (0.75-0.92) for those who drank 11-20 years, and no association was found between 1 and 10 years or over 20 years of drinking and risk of stroke.

CONCLUSIONS: These results indicate that light to moderate alcohol consumption may be protective against all and ischemic stroke, and heavy drinking was not significantly associated with risk of all stroke in China. No association between alcohol consumption and hemorrhagic stroke was found.

17 November 2021 In General Health

AIM: To evaluate the relationship between habitual alcohol consumption and the risk of falls hospitalization.

METHODS: The EPIC-Norfolk is a prospective population-based cohort study in Norfolk, UK. In total, 25 637 community dwelling adults aged 40-79 years were recruited. Units of alcohol consumed per week were measured using a validated Food Frequency Questionnaire. The main outcome was the first hospital admission following a fall.

RESULTS: Over a median follow-up period of 11.5 years (299 211 total person years), the cumulative incidence function (95% confidence interval) of hospitalized falls at 121-180 months for non-users, light (>0 to 7 to 28 units/week) were 11.08 (9.94-12.35), 7.53 (7.02-8.08), 5.91 (5.29-6.59) and 8.20 (6.35-10.56), respectively. Moderate alcohol consumption was independently associated with a reduced risk of falls hospitalization after adjustment for most major confounders (hazard ratio = 0.88; 95% confidence interval 0.79-0.99). The relationship between light alcohol consumption and falls hospitalization was attenuated by gender differences. Alcohol intake higher than the recommended threshold of 28 units/week was associated with an increased risk of falls hospitalization (hazard ratio 1.40 [1.14-1.73]).

CONCLUSIONS: Moderate alcohol consumption appears to be associated with a reduced risk of falls hospitalization, and intake above the recommended limit is associated with an increased risk. This provides incentive to limit alcohol consumption within the recommended range and has important implications for public health policies for aging populations. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2021; 21: 657-663.

17 November 2021 In Drinking Patterns

This paper explores trends in beverage preference in adolescents, identifies related regional differences, and examines cluster differences in key drinking measures. Data were obtained from the European School Survey Project on Alcohol and Other Drugs (ESPAD), covering 24 European countries between 1999 and 2019. Trends in the distribution of alcoholic beverages on the participants' most recent drinking occasion were analysed by sex and country using fractional multinomial logit regression. Clusters of countries based on trends and predicted beverage proportions were compared regarding the prevalence of drinkers, mean alcohol volume and prevalence of heavy drinking. Four distinct clusters each among girls and boys emerged. Among girls, there was not one type of beverage that was preferred across clusters, but the proportion of cider/alcopops strongly increased over time in most clusters. Among boys, the proportion of beer decreased, but was dominant across time in all clusters. Only northern European countries formed a geographically defined region with the highest prevalence of heavy drinking and average alcohol volume in both genders. Adolescent beverage preferences are associated with mean alcohol volume and heavy drinking at a country-level. Future approaches to drinking cultures need to take subpopulations such as adolescents into account.

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