26 January 2022 In Cancer

Evidence on the impact of diet, alcohol, body-mass index (BMI), and physical activity on mortality due to cancer and other cancer-related outcomes is still scarce. Herein, we reviewed the contribution of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study to the current state of the art on the role of these factors in cancer mortality. We identified 45 studies using a rapid systematic review methodology.

Dietary factors associated with reduced cancer mortality included raw vegetable intake; dietary fiber intake; the Mediterranean diet; other dietary scores; other diet patterns including low meat eaters, vegetarians/vegans, or fish eaters; dietary intake (or biomarkers) of some vitamins (e.g., vitamin D, vitamin K2, or Vitamin C); and intake of lignans. Physical activity and following healthy lifestyle recommendations also reduced cancer mortality risk.

In contrast, dietary factors associated with higher cancer mortality risk included poor diet quality, consumption of alcohol and soft drinks including juice, and, to a lesser extent, intake of some fatty acids. Excess weight and obesity also increased the risk of cancer mortality. The EPIC study holds valuable information on diet and lifestyle factors and offers a unique opportunity to identify key diet-related factors for cancer mortality prevention.

17 November 2021 In Drinking Patterns

BACKGROUND: In many countries, lockdown measures were implemented to curb the COVID-19 pandemic. This situation may have an impact on mental health, tobacco smoking and alcohol consumption. The aim of this research report is therefore to describe changes in tobacco and alcohol consumption in the general French population during the first 2 weeks of lockdown and identify any associated factors.

METHODS: Self-reported changes in smoking and alcohol consumption following the lockdown implemented in France on 17 March 2020 were collected from 2003 respondents aged 18 years and older in an online cross-sectional survey carried out from 30 March to 1 April 2020. Anxiety and depression levels were assessed using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale.

RESULTS: Among current smokers, 26.7% reported an increase in their tobacco consumption since lockdown and 18.6% reported a decrease, while it remained stable for 54.7%. The increase in tobacco consumption was associated with an age of 18-34 years, a high level of education, and anxiety. Among alcohol drinkers, 10.7% reported an increase in their alcohol consumption since lockdown and 24.4% reported a decrease, while it remained stable for 64.8%. The increase in alcohol consumption was associated with an age of 18-49 years, living in cities of more than 100 000 inhabitants, a high socio-professional category, and a depressive mood.

CONCLUSIONS: The national lockdown implemented in France during the COVID-19 pandemic influenced tobacco and alcohol consumption in different ways according to sociodemographic group and mental health.

26 May 2021 In General Health
Little is known about possible changes in alcohol consumption distribution during the COVID-19 pandemic. We estimated how individual changes in alcohol consumption during the pandemic translated into changes in: (i) mean consumption; (ii) dispersion of consumption distribution; and (iii) prevalence of heavy drinkers. We employed data from two independent web-surveys of Norwegian adults collected between April and July 2020 and limited to those reporting past year alcohol consumption (N1 = 15,267, N2 = 1195). Self-reports of changes in drinking behavior were quantified, assuming change being relative to baseline consumption level. During the pandemic, we found a small increase (Survey 1) or no change (Survey 2) in estimated mean alcohol consumption (which parallels to total consumption). However, in both surveys, the dispersion of the distribution increased significantly (p < 0.001). For most respondents, an average modest decline in consumption was found. However, the small fraction with the highest baseline consumption increased their consumption substantially, and in effect, the proportion of heavy drinkers increased markedly (p < 0.001). In conclusion, quantifications of reported changes in alcohol consumption during the pandemic suggest that the upper 5 to 10% of the drinkers increased their consumption and hence the prevalence of heavy drinkers increased, despite little or no change in total alcohol consumption.
21 April 2021 In Cardiovascular System

BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Most studies assess the relationship between alcohol and stroke at some point. Little is known about the effect on stroke of drinking status changes over time. This study aimed to examine the association of median 2.4-year drinking status changes with risk of stroke.

METHODS AND RESULTS: We examined 22,691 adults from rural China. Drinking status was assessed at 2004-2006 and in 2008. Participants were divided into four change patterns: consistent non-drinkers, abstainers, starters, and consistent drinkers. A Cox proportional hazards model were performed. We observed 1215 cases of stroke during a median follow-up period of 11.8 years. A faint J-shaped association between alcohol consumption and risk of stroke was found in this population. Based on the amount of alcohol consumption, only current drinkers with >/=721 g/week at baseline in both males and females had a higher risk of stroke [hazard ratio (HR): 1.342; 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.070-1.683 and HR: 2.130; CI: 1.041-4.357, respectively]. Based on change patterns, Compared with consistent non-drinkers, the HR (95% CI) for consistent drinkers, abstainers and starters was 1.298 (1.070-1.576), 1.093 (0.877-1.362) and 1.263 (1.034-1.543), respectively. The same trend was observed in male. The HR (95% CI) for consistent drinkers, abstainers and starters was 1.360 (1.098-1.685), 1.139 (0.883-1.470) and 1.364 (1.092-1.703), respectively. No difference was observed in females.

CONCLUSION: High alcohol consumption was associated with increased risk of stroke in both males and females. However, based on change patterns, consistent drinkers and starters were at higher risk of stroke only in males.

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