Even One Drink A Day Could Shorten Life Expectancy

Knowing when to say when

About half the participants reported drinking more than 100g per week, and 8.4% drank more than 350g per week.

Exceeding recommended drinking amounts can cause permanent damage Alcohol consumption is associated with a slightly lower risk of non-fatal heart attacks but this must be balanced against the higher risk associated with other serious - and potentially fatal - cardiovascular diseases.

Fatal aortic aneurysm by 15%.

"Guideline developers tend to recognise that, in line with many other voluntary behaviours, drinkers are likely to be willing to accept some level of risk and have set guideline thresholds accordingly", she said.

The study, which looked at the alcohol consumption habits of 600,000 people, found that having between 10 and 15 drinks per week could cut a person's lifespan by up to two years.

For the study, 21 people were randomly assigned to drink either a mixture of alcohol and juice, or juice alone.

"This study has shown that drinking alcohol at levels which were believed to be safe is actually linked with lower life expectancy and several adverse health outcomes", said Dr. Dan G. Blazer of Duke University, who co-authored the study.

In Canada, it's recommended women drink a maximum of two glasses of beer or wine per day.

The paper claims that drinking four units a day above the government's current safe-drinking recommendation (of two units a day) could cut life expectancy by two years. For example, life expectancy was 6 months lower among those who drank 100 to 200 grams (7 ounces) per week, and life expectancy was 1 to 2 years lower among those who drank 200 to 300 grams (10.5 ounces) per week, compared with those who drank less than 100 grams a week.

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Just one alcoholic drink a day could reduce your life expectancy by six months, a major global study has found.

A large new study has suggested that you are more at risk of dying or of a range of heart and circulatory conditions if you have as little as one alcoholic drink a day.

However, higher levels of alcohol were also linked to a lower risk of heart attack, or myocardial infarction.

The authors noted that the different relationships between alcohol intake and various types of cardiovascular disease may relate to alcohol's elevating effects on blood pressure and on factors related to elevated high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) (also known as "good" cholesterol).

The authors say their findings challenge the widely held belief that moderate drinking is beneficial to cardiovascular health, and support the UK's recently lowered guidelines.

However other countries reportedly still have much higher limits than the UK.

The recommeneded alcohol limits in Italy, Portugal and Spain are almost 50 percent higher than those of the UK's, while the USA's upper limit for men is also nearly double this.

The study "is a serious wake-up call for many countries", Jeremy Pearson of the British Heart Foundation said in a statement. Research that rolls together previous studies can be problematic if they aren't similar enough, though this one appears to have done a good job at overcoming that obstacle and combining comparable data, Jernigan said.

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