After just one or two alcoholic beverages per night, the risk of having a stroke at a later age increases considerably, a large study has shown.
Experts from Oxford University say their research among 500,000 people is finally the & # 39; myth & # 39; removes that light drinking protects health.
They discovered that one or two drinks a day increased the risk of stroke by 10 to 15 percent over the next ten years and four drinks a day by 35 percent.
For years, many experts have claimed that moderate alcohol consumption has a protective effect – pointing to studies that showed that an odd glass of wine or a pint of beer reduced the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
But critics claim that those studies were flawed – because they included alcoholics who have become tee-total or people who do not get drunk because of other health problems.
Experts from Oxford University say their research among 500,000 people is finally the & # 39; myth & # 39; removes that light drinking protects health
So the evidence seemed to suggest that light drinkers were less at risk than those who drank nothing at all.
The new study, published in the Lancet medical journal, circumvented this problem by using a genetic study of people in China.
A third of people in China have a genetic peculiarity, which means that they cannot tolerate alcohol.
Their genes mean that they are unable to clear up a toxic by-product of alcohol – causing them to become nauseous and flush after even drinking a small amount.
The researchers tested the genes of people in ten parts of China – and then followed their drinking.
Those who did not drink because of their genetic mutation were considered a reliable marker for zero alcohol consumption because they simply could not tolerate the drink.
The other two-thirds of the participants who did not suffer from the same genetic whim could drink freely – and the men drank an average of four drinks a day and were at a much higher risk of high blood pressure and strokes.
BEER FOR WINE IS NOT FINE, SCIENTISTS FIND
Beer for wine and you feel good, the tactical tippler thinks – but the old saying seems to be a myth.
In a less than surprising revelation, researchers discovered last month that hangovers are just as bad, regardless of the order in which you drink your drinks.
Scientists gave alcoholic drinks to 90 volunteers in different combinations in a laboratory experiment on two separate nights.
Some were asked to drink two and a half liters of Carlsberg, followed by four large glasses of white wine. A second group started with wine for beer.
Researchers had to control the drunken participants, who sang and danced, with a megaphone. They were sent to bed in the laboratory at 1 AM.
Participants were asked about their hangover the next day and gave a score on a so-called Acute Hangover Scale.
The findings, led by a team at Cambridge University, indicated that regardless of how you order your drinks, you are probably still sick if you drink too much.
Dr. Kai Hensel, one of the researchers, said: “The vomiting was slightly higher than I thought. But they enjoyed it. & # 39;
Chinese women drank very little, regardless of their genetic makeup.
But researcher Professor Sir Richard Peto, co-director of the Clinical Trial Service Unit at Oxford University, said he was convinced that the findings applied to both British men and women.
& # 39; If women drink like men, they die like men, & # 39; he said.
He emphasized that the findings were not meant to keep people from drinking – and said that smoking would have a much greater impact on risk.
Sir Richard said: & I don't think people will change what they drink because of these results.
& # 39; But we have the truth about a story that has been a myth for centuries. & # 39; Study leader Professor Zhengming Chen, also from Oxford, said: “Moderate drinking is said to be potentially beneficial, especially for cardiovascular disease.
& # 39; This study shows really robust evidence that refutes this claim. The core message is that this protective effect is not real.
& # 39; Even moderate alcohol consumption increases the risk of stroke … & # 39; He added: & # 39; The findings for a heart attack were less clear-cut, so we plan to collect more evidence. & # 39; The study supports the official drink guidelines issued by the main drug Dame Sally Davies in 2016, which warned that there is no & # 39; safe & # 39; drinking level.
Leading scientists who were initially critical of those guidelines said they could change their mind in light of the new findings.
David Spiegelhalter, professor of public understanding of risk at the University of Cambridge, said: & # 39; I have always been reasonably convinced that moderate alcohol consumption was protective of cardiovascular disease, but now I doubt. & # 39;
He added: & # 39; This is a very impressive study that shows that men who happen to have a combination of genes that prevent them from drinking alcohol are less likely to have a stroke than people without those genes.
& # 39; The fact that this is not true for Chinese women, who tend not to drink whatever their genes, suggests that this effect is due to the alcohol and not to the genes themselves. & # 39; He added: & # 39; The increase in the total risk of stroke was around 38 percent for every 40g of drunk alcohol per day; that is five British units, or more than half a bottle of wine.
& # 39; To give this single perspective, it is about the opposite effect of taking a statin. & # 39;
The NHS recommends that adults drink no more than 14 units per week – that is, 14 single shots or six pints of beer or a bottle of wine
DO YOU DRINK TOO MUCH ALCOHOL? THE 10 QUESTIONS THAT DISCLOSE YOUR RISK
A screening tool that is widely used by medical professionals is the AUDIT (Alcohol Use Disorders Identification Tests). Developed in collaboration with the World Health Organization, the 10-question test is considered the gold standard to help determine if anyone has problems with alcohol abuse.
The test has been reproduced here with the permission of the WHO.
Answer each question and note the corresponding score to complete it.
0-7: You are within the sensible drinking range and have a low risk of alcohol-related problems.
About 8: Indicate harmful or hazardous drinking.
8-15: Average risk level. If you drink at your current level, you risk developing problems with your health and life in general, such as work and relationships. Consider cutting back (see below for tips).
16-19: Higher risk of complications from alcohol. Cutting costs yourself can be difficult at this level, because you can depend on it, so you may need professional help from your doctor and / or counselor.
20 and older: Possible dependence. Your drinking is already causing problems and you could be dependent. You should definitely consider stopping gradually or at least reducing your drinking. You must seek professional help to determine your dependence level and the safest way to remove alcohol.
Severe dependence may require medically assisted withdrawal or detox in a hospital or specialist clinic. This is due to the likelihood of severe withdrawal symptoms of alcohol in the first 48 hours that require specialist treatment.
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