New Research Reveals Why Alcoholic Consumption Is Unhealthy


Drinking alcohol is associated with nearly one in 10 deaths among middle-aged people

A study author said its findings were the most significant to date because of the range of factors considered.

Death from alcohol consumption is much more common in men than women.

For younger people, the biggest causes of death linked to alcohol were tuberculosis (1.4 percent), road injuries (1.2 percent) and self-harm (1.1 percent).

Alcohol consumption ranked as the seventh-leading risk factor for premature death and holistic disabilities across the world in 2016.

The study reports that 2.8 million deaths were attributed to alcohol use in 2016 alone. For populations aged 50 years and older, cancers accounted for a large proportion of total alcohol-attributable deaths in 2016, constituting 27·1% (95% UI 21·2-33·3) of total alcohol-attributable female deaths and 18·9% (15·3-22·6) of male deaths.

Dr. Emmanuela Gakidou, UW Health Metric Sciences Professor and a researcher who was part of the study, makes it clear that when it comes to alcohol and its effects on overall health, we are facing what is more or less a black and white issue: "The health risks associated with alcohol are massive", she said.

The study, which received funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, also analyzed whether moderate levels of drinking could have health benefits-which previous studies have indicated.

Even though Indians are among the lowest consumers of alcohol worldwide, concerns remain, like average age of initiation into alcohol use which has come down from 28 in the 1980s to 17 in 2007.

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This is against a previously-released research that said alcoholic drinks are good for the well-being since they have the high level of healthy antioxidants.

The University of Washington team said governments need to counter prevailing theories suggesting that modest alcohol use can be beneficial. So we may conclude from the different studies of alcohol that the safest amount of alcohol consumption is zero.

There should no longer be any doubt that the aim of 'public health' zealots is to regulate alcohol like cigarettes and treat drinkers like smokers, he added.

Eight of the ten countries with the highest alcohol consumption prevalence are in Europe.

The study showed about 1 in 3 people drink alcohol; men consuming 1.7 drinks each day and women an average of 0.73 drinks per day.

"The widely held view of the health benefits of alcohol needs revising, particularly as improved methods and analyses continue to show how much alcohol use contributes to global death and disability". "Our results show that the safest level of drinking is none".

"Alcohol poses dire ramifications for future population health in the absence of policy action today".

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