28 September 2023 In Drinking Patterns

INTRODUCTION: Recent research found that drinking alcohol mixed with energy drinks (AmED) could be riskier than drinking alcohol alone. Our aim was to compare rates of risk behaviors in consumers of AmED versus exclusive alcohol drinkers, matching them based on their drinking frequency.

METHODS: Data about 16-year-old students who reported the number of occasions on which they had drunk AmED or alcohol only in the preceding 12 months (n = 32,848) were drawn from the 2019 ESPAD study. After matching for consumption frequency, the sample consisted of 22,370 students (11,185 AmED consumers and 11,185 exclusive alcohol drinkers). Key predictors comprised substance use, other individual risk behaviors, and family characteristics (parental regulation, monitoring, and caring).

RESULTS: The multivariate analysis showed significantly higher odds of being AmED consumers compared to being exclusive alcohol drinkers in the majority of the investigated risk behaviors, including: daily tobacco smoking, illicit drug use, heavy episodic drinking, truancy at school, engaging in physical fights and serious arguments, having troubles with the police, and having unprotected sexual intercourse. Instead, lower odds were found for reporting high parents' educational level, medium and low family economic status, perceived possibility to freely talk about problems to family members, spending free time reading books or other hobbies.

CONCLUSIONS: Our study shows that, given the same consumption frequency in the past year, AmED consumers typically reported higher associations with risk-taking behaviors compared to exclusive alcohol drinkers. These findings advance past research that failed to control for the frequency of AmED use versus exclusive alcohol consumption.

28 September 2023 In Osteoporosis

OBJECTIVE: This study was undertaken to examine the relationship between alcohol consumption and hip osteoarthritis in women.

Alcohol has been associated with both adverse and beneficial health effects generally; however, the relationship between alcohol consumption and hip osteoarthritis has been minimally studied.

METHODS: Among women in the Nurses' Health Study cohort in the US, alcohol consumption was assessed every 4 years, starting in 1980.

Intake was computed as cumulative averages and simple updates with latency periods of 0-4 through 20-24 years. We followed 83,383 women without diagnosed osteoarthritis in 1988 to June 2012. We identified 1,796 cases of total hip replacement due to hip osteoarthritis defined by self-report of osteoarthritis with hip replacement. RESULTS: Alcohol consumption was positively associated with hip osteoarthritis risk.

Compared with nondrinkers, multivariable hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (95% CIs) were HR 1.04 (95% CI 0.90, 1.19) for drinkers of >0 to /=20 grams/day (P for trend < 0.0001).

This association held in latency analyses of up to 16-20 years, and for alcohol consumption between 35-40 years of age.

Independent of other alcoholic beverages, the multivariable HRs (per 10 grams of alcohol) were similar for individual types of alcohol intake (wine, liquor, and beer; P = 0.57 for heterogeneity among alcohol types).

CONCLUSION: Higher alcohol consumption was associated with greater incidence of total hip replacement due to hip osteoarthritis in a dose-dependent manner in women.

27 October 2022 In Drinking Patterns
Preventing or delaying the onset of alcohol use among children and youth is an important public health goal. One possible factor in alcohol use onset among early adolescents is caffeine. The aim of this study was to assess the possible contribution of caffeine to the onset of alcohol use during early adolescence. We used data from the Young Mountaineer Health Study Cohort. Survey data were collected from 1349 (response rate: 80.7%) 6th grade students (mean age at baseline 11.5 years) in 20 middle schools in West Virginia during the fall of 2020, and again approximately 6 months later in spring of 2021. We limited our analyses to students reporting never having used any form of alcohol at baseline. Logistic regression was employed in multivariable analyses and both Odds Ratios and Relative Risks reported. At follow-up, almost 14% of participants reported having consumed alcohol at least once and 57% used caffeine of 100 mg + daily. In multivariable analyses we controlled for social and behavioral variables known to impact tobacco use. Caffeine use was operationalized as a three-level factor: no use, <100 mg per day, and 100 + mg per day, with the latter being the approximate equivalent of the minimum of a typical cup of coffee or can of energy drink. Caffeine use of 100 mg + per day was significantly related to alcohol use at 6-months follow-up (OR: 1.79, RR: 1.56, p = .037). We conclude that caffeine consumption among 11-12-year-old adolescents may be a factor in early onset of alcohol use.
15 June 2022 In Drinking Patterns

AIMS: To examine the association of alcohol consumption patterns with growth differentiation factor 15 (GDF-15) in older drinkers, separately among individuals with cardiovascular disease (CVD)/diabetes and those without them, as GDF-15 is a strong biomarker of chronic disease burden.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. SETTING: Population-based study in Madrid (Spain). PARTICIPANTS: A total of 2051 life-time drinkers aged 65+ years included in the Seniors-ENRICA-2 study in 2015-17. Participants' mean age was 71.4 years and 55.4% were men.

MEASUREMENTS: According to their average life-time alcohol intake, participants were classified as occasional ( 1.43-20 g/day; women: > 1.43-10 g/day), moderate-risk (men: > 20-40 g/day; women: > 10-20 g/day) and high-risk drinkers (men: > 40 g/day; women: > 20 g/day; or binge drinkers). We also ascertained wine preference (> 80% of alcohol derived from wine), drinking with meals and adherence to a Mediterranean drinking pattern (MDP) defined as low-risk drinking, wine preference and one of the following: drinking only with meals; higher adherence to the Mediterranean diet; or any of these.

FINDINGS: In participants without CVD/diabetes, GDF-15 increased by 0.27% [95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.06%, 0.48%] per 1 g/day increment in alcohol among high-risk drinkers, but there was no clear evidence of association in those with lower intakes or in the overall group, or across categories of alcohol consumption status. Conversely, among those with CVD/diabetes, GDF-15 rose by 0.19% (95% CI = 0.05%, 0.33%) per 1 g/day increment in the overall group and GDF-15 was 26.89% (95% CI = 12.93%, 42.58%) higher in high-risk versus low-risk drinkers. Drinking with meals did not appear to be related to GDF-15, but among those without CVD/diabetes, wine preference and adherence to the MDP were associated with lower GDF-15, especially when combined with high adherence to the Mediterranean diet.

CONCLUSIONS: Among older life-time drinkers in Madrid, Spain, high-risk drinking was positively associated with growth differentiation factor 15 (a biomarker of chronic disease burden). There was inconclusive evidence of a beneficial association for low-risk consumption.

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