23 November 2022 In Drinking Patterns

Although excessive alcohol consumption is a highly prevalent public health problem the data on the associations between alcohol consumption and health outcomes in individuals preferring different types of alcoholic beverages has remained unclear. We examined the relationships between the amounts and patterns of drinking with the data on laboratory indices of liver function, lipid status and inflammation in a national population-based health survey (FINRISK). Data on health status, alcohol drinking, types of alcoholic beverages preferred, body weight, smoking, coffee consumption and physical activity were recorded from 22,432 subjects (10,626 men, 11,806 women), age range 25-74 years. The participants were divided to subgroups based on the amounts of regular alcohol intake (abstainers, moderate and heavy drinkers), patterns of drinking (binge or regular) and the type of alcoholic beverage preferred (wine, beer, cider or long drink, hard liquor or mixed). Regular drinking was found to be more typical in wine drinkers whereas the subjects preferring beer or hard liquor were more often binge-type drinkers and cigarette smokers. Alcohol use in all forms was associated with increased frequencies of abnormalities in the markers of liver function, lipid status and inflammation even at rather low levels of consumption. The highest rates of abnormalities occurred, however, in the subgroups of binge-type drinkers preferring beer or hard liquor. These results demonstrate that adverse consequences of alcohol occur even at moderate average drinking levels especially in individuals who engage in binge drinking and in those preferring beer or hard liquor. Further emphasis should be placed on such patterns of drinking in policies aimed at preventing alcohol-induced adverse health outcomes.

23 November 2022 In Dementia

BACKGROUND: Previous studies on associations of alcohol use with memory decline showed inconclusive results. We examined these associations using longitudinal data from the Guangzhou Biobank Cohort Study (GBCS) and explored whether these associations varied by sex and age group.

METHODS: Memory function was assessed by delayed 10-word recall test (DWRT) and immediate 10-word recall test (IWRT) at both baseline (2003-2008) and follow-up (2008-2012) examinations, expressed as the mean annual change and mean annual rate of change in scores. Memory cognitive impairment was defined by DWRT scores of less than 4. Multivariable linear regression models and restricted cubic spline were used for data analysis.

RESULTS: Of 14,827 participants without memory cognitive impairment at baseline, 90.2% were never or occasional drinkers, 5% moderate drinkers, 1.5% excessive drinkers, and 3.3% former drinkers. The mean (standard deviation) age was 60.6 (6.6) years old. During an average of 4.1 years follow-up, 1000 (6.7%) participants developed memory cognitive impairment. After adjusting for confounders, compared with never or occasional drinkers, moderate and excessive drinkers had significant decline in DWRT scores (beta, 95% confidence interval (CI) = -0.04 (-0.08 to -0.01), and - 0.07 (-0.14 to 0.01), respectively), and IWRT scores (beta, 95% CI = -0.10 (-0.19 to -0.01), and - 0.15 (-0.30 to 0.01), respectively) annually. With respect to the mean annual rate of change, moderate and excessive drinkers also showed greater decline in DWRT scores (beta, 95% CI = -1.02% (-1.87% to -0.16%), and - 1.64% (-3.14% to -0.14%), respectively). The associations did not vary by sex and age group (all P values for interaction >/= 0.10).

CONCLUSION: Compared to never or occasional alcohol use, moderate and excessive alcohol users had greater memory decline and the associations did not vary by sex and age group.

22 September 2022 In General Health

BACKGROUND: Previous studies exploring usual alcohol consumption and falls risk were scarce in China. In addition, the dose-response relationship has not been explored so far. This study aims to estimate the association between usual alcohol consumption and risk of falls among middle-aged and older Chinese adults based on data from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (CHARLS), which is representative of the population of the entire country.

METHODS: Baseline survey data in 2015 and follow-up data in 2018 in CHARLS were utilized. Alcohol consumption was calculated in grams per day (gr/day) according to self-reported drinking data and categorized accordingly to The Dietary Guidelines for Chinese Residents (DGC) 2016. Fall was obtained from self-reported information. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were performed to estimate the association of usual alcohol consumption with risk of falling. The dose-response relationship was also explored using restricted cubic splines.

RESULTS: A total of 12,910 middle-aged and older participants were included from the CHARLS 2015, of which 11,667 were followed up in 2018. We found that former, moderate, and excessive drinkers were at higher fall risk compared to never drinkers (former: OR, 1.24; 95% CI, 1.05-1.46; moderate: OR, 1.22; 95% CI, 1.06-1.41; excessive: OR, 1.36; 95% CI, 1.15-1.61) in the longitudinal analysis. Similarly, individuals with moderate and excessive alcohol consumption were at increased risk of falling in the cross-sectional analysis (moderate: OR, 1.18; 95% CI, 1.02-1.37; excessive: OR, 1.32; 95% CI, 1.11,1.57). No significant increased risk of falls was found for former drinkers (former: OR, 1.13; 95% CI, 0.96-1.34). We observed a significant non-linear relationship.

CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests that usual alcohol consumption was associated with a higher risk of falls, highlighting the key role of alcohol intake on the fall risk, which needed consideration in developing intervention and prevention strategies for reducing falls among middle-aged and older Chinese adults.

26 August 2022 In Drinking Patterns

Older adults of today consume more alcohol, yet knowledge about the factors associated with different consumption levels is limited in this age group. Based on the data from a population-based sample (n = 1156, 539 men and 617 women) in The Gothenburg H70 Birth Cohort Study 2014-16, we examined sociodemographic, social, and health-related factors associated with alcohol consumption levels in 70-year-olds, using logistic regression. Total weekly alcohol intake was calculated based on the self-reported amount of alcohol consumed.

Alcohol consumption was categorized as lifetime abstention, former drinking, moderate consumption (98 g/week). At-risk consumption was further categorized into lower at-risk (98-196 g/week), medium at-risk (196-350 g/week), and higher at-risk (>/=350 g/week). We found that among the 1156 participants, 3% were lifetime abstainers, 3% were former drinkers, 64% were moderate drinkers, and 30% were at-risk drinkers (20% lower, 8% medium, 2% higher).

Among several factors, former drinking was associated with worse general self-rated health (OR 1.65, 95% CI 1.08-2.51) and lower health-related quality of life (measured by physical component score) (OR 0.94, 95% CI 0.91-0.97), higher illness burden (OR 1.16, 95% CI 1.07-1.27), and weaker grip strength (OR 0.96, 95% CI 0.94-0.98). Higher at-risk drinkers more often had liver disease (OR 11.41, 95% CI 3.48-37.37) and minor depression (OR 4.57, 95% CI 1.40-14.95), but less contacts with health care (OR 0.32, 95% CI 0.11-0.92).

Our findings demonstrate the importance of classifications beyond abstinence and at-risk consumption, with implications for both the prevention and clinical management of unhealthy consumption patterns in older adults.

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