Consuming more than five drinks a week could shorten your life

Consuming more than five drinks a week could shorten your life

About half of the people in the study reported drinking more than 12.5 units of alcohol a week. But in the USA, 100 grams is equivalent to what's in seven 12-ounces cans of beer, 5-ounce glasses of wine, or 1.5-ounce shots of rum, gin or other distilled spirits.

An analysis of almost 600,000 people found those drinking more than 100g of alcohol every week - around five 175ml glasses of wine or pints of beer - were at an increased risk of early death.

The researchers estimated that reducing long-term drinking from the two-drink a day limit suggested by the United States government, to less than one a day, was associated with a one- to two-year boost in life expectancy in men.

The upper safe limit of drinking was about five drinks per week (100g of pure alcohol, 12.5 units or just over five pints of 4% ABV beer or five 175ml glasses of 13% ABV wine). Drinking 200 to 350 grams per week was estimated to reduce life span by one to two years and drinking more than 350 grams per week by four to five years. "It also highlights the need to reduce alcohol-related harm in baby boomers, an age group now at highest risk of rising alcohol misuse", said Dr.

It's no secret that alcohol can be bad for health in other ways, too.

"The issue of moderate drinking and its health effects is a very important one, because the majority of people in the country drink and most of those people do so moderately". 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.

The team also explored links between how much alcohol people consumed and their risk of different types of cardiovascular disease.

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Although the study did find that drinking alcohol was associated with a lower risk of non-fatal heart attacks, experts said that "on balance", drinking alcohol has no health benefits.

Drinking more alcohol was linked to higher chances of all cardiovascular conditions except heart attacks, where it was linked to a lower chance.

The researchers particularly looked at cardiovascular diseases in this study.

The more people drank, the higher the risk of a range of life threatening illnesses, including stroke and heart failure. There's variation from country to country as to how many grams of alcohol are generally found in a standard drink. However, the study used self-reported alcohol consumption and relied on observational data, so no firm conclusions can me made about cause and effect.

"What this is saying is, if you're really concerned about your longevity, don't have more than a drink a day", said David Jernigan, a Johns Hopkins University alcohol researcher who was not involved in the study.

Regularly drinking more than the recommended United Kingdom guidelines for alcohol could take years off your life, according to new research from the University of Cambridge. Spain, Portugal and Italy, the study states, have recommended limits almost 50% higher than the 100-gram threshold.

Of course, you can be sure many will not be happy to read about these findings.

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