There is a common saying that ‘one or maybe even two drinks per day are good for you’. But a new BMI study by the researchers at the University of Pennsylvania has something different to say.
According to the study, reducing alcohol consumption can improve heart health, reduce body mass index and lower blood pressure. The study finds that even this is effective among people who drink only light to moderate amounts of alcohol.
The large multi-center international study was carried by the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
The recent study challenges the previous research that suggests light to moderate drinking may be good for your heart.
According to the new study, those who consume 0.6 to 0.8 fluid ounces of alcohol a day or 17 to 23 ml (which is roughly what a 175 ml glass of wine contains) comes under the category of light to moderate drinkers.
155 researchers from North America, the UK, Australia and continental Europe participated in the study and analyzed data to know more about the association between drinking habits and heart health. Around 56 epidemiological studies covering more than 260,000 people of European descent were used for the study.
Findings of the study
- Individuals who consume 17 percent less alcohol per week have on average a 10 percent reduced risk of coronary heart problem, lower blood pressure and a lower BMI.
- Study found that people with a particular gene consumed 17 percent less alcohol per week.
- These people were less likely to binge drink.
- Moreover, they were more likely to abstain from alcohol altogether.
- Those who were lower alcohol consumers had a 10 percent average reduced risk of developing coronary heart disease, lower blood pressure and a lower BMI.
- The final verdict of the study was that reduction in alcohol consumption across all levels- even light to moderate drinking – is beneficial for heart health.
“Contrary to what earlier reports have shown, it now appears that any exposure to alcohol has a negative impact upon heart health,” said Co-lead author Michael Holmes, a research assistant professor in Perelman School of Medicine’s department of Transplant Surgery.
Prof. Holmes further adds, “However, what we’re seeing with this new study, which uses an investigative approach similar to a randomized clinical trial, is that reduced consumption of alcohol, even for light-to-moderate drinkers, may lead to improved cardiovascular health.”