Lower your alcohol consumption to avoid premature death, new study warns

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

alcohol-consumption(NaturalHealth365) A recent study is showing that current accepted guidelines regarding ‘safe’ amounts of alcohol consumption are inflated. A worldwide team of researchers have found that consuming more than six cans of beer or six glasses of wine weekly can reduce longevity.

In the U.S., low risk drinking is defined as one standard drink a day for women and two drinks per day for men. These limits are lower for persons over age 65. Guidelines in the United Kingdom are lower, while Australia guidelines say 14 standard drinks or nine glasses of wine weekly is safe. However, the new research, published in The Lancet, states otherwise.

The kind of alcohol consumption that increases the risk of death by 20 percent

For this study, 120 researchers worldwide examined health data from almost 600,000 drinkers from 19 countries dating back to 1964 in some cases. The size of the study allows for greater accuracy and greater clarity of the data.

A standard drink is four ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer or 1.5 ounces 80-proof spirits. A 40-year-old man who drinks 10 to 20 drinks per week has been found to shorten his life expectancy by half a year. If more than 35 standard drinks per week are consumed, life expectancy is shortened by four to five years.

The study found that persons drinking 7 to 14 standard drinks each week has a 5 percent higher risk of early death than those who drink less or not at all. Drinking over 21 drinks per week raises the risk of death by 20 percent. And, drinking more than 35 drinks per week raises early death risk by 50 percent.

Reducing alcohol consumption improves liver health and reduces cancer risk

When it comes to alcohol consumption, less is clearly better for your health and longevity. The study found that persons who regularly drank less than 10 drinks per week had the lowest early death rates compared with persons who drank more.

Death related to alcohol consumption can occur in many ways. Alcohol causes damage to organs such as the liver, brain, heart and intestines. Heavy drinking can raise the risk of neurodegenerative disease and increase stroke risk by four-fold. And, yes, drinking alcohol is also associated with a higher risk of cancer.

Limit alcohol consumption to six drinks or less per week

The danger of drinking alcohol is that as it breaks down in the body, it is converted to acetaldehyde, a known carcinogen. It impairs the body’s antioxidant defenses, produces harmful free radicals and creates a dangerous atmosphere of inflammation in the body that can set the stage for disease.

There are some key vitamins and supplements that can help to offset the damage causes by drinking alcohol. B-complex vitamins, benfotiamin, folic acid, vitamin C, resveratrol and N-acetylcysteine for glutathione can all assist with raising antioxidant levels in the body.

Milk thistle is known to protect liver health and boost the immune system as well as protect DNA while fighting inflammation in the body. But, of course, we – at NaturalHealth365 – encourage you to find other ways to celebrate life or unwind after a hard day at work.

And, as always, we wish you all the best in life.

Sources for this article include:

TheLancet.com
News-Medical.net
NaturalHealth365.com