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Binge Drinking too bad for cardiovascular health in young adults says AHA

Binge Drinking too bad for cardiovascular health in young adults says AHA

Binge drinking is very common in young adults and is ever increasing. Mariann R. Piano at Center for Research Development and ScholarshipVanderbilt University School of NursingNashvilleTN and associates conducted a study to evaluate  the effects of binge drinking on blood pressure (BP) and other cardiovascular health metrics in individuals between 18 and 45 years of age.The researchers found that young adults who frequently indulge in binge drinking were more likely to have certain risk factors for cardiovascular disease than non-binge drinkers.The findings of research have appeared in Journal of the American Heart Association.

Binge drinking is defined as consuming five drinks or more in a row for men (4 four or more drinks for women) per occasion in about two hours within the past 30 days.Some earlier  studies  found that it increases cardiovascular risk among middle-aged and older adults. But among younger adults age 18 to 45 specifically, the relationship between binge drinking and its effect on blood pressure and metabolic factors was not known.

Also read :More than 5 drinks per week may decrease life span: Lancet

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“Compared to previous generations, the pervasiveness, intensity (number of drinks) and regularity (several times per week) of binge drinking may place today’s young adult at greater risk for more profound rates of alcohol-attributable harm,” said Mariann Piano, Ph.D., R.N., study lead author and Nancy and Hilliard Travis Chair in Nursing and Senior Associate Dean for Research at Vanderbilt University School of Nursing in Nashville, Tennessee. “Young adults need to be aware that the consequences of repeated binge drinking may harm their hearts. The risk extends beyond poor school performance and increased risk for accidental injury.”

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This study involved 4,710 adults 18- to 45-years-old who responded to the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) in 2011-2012 and 2013-2014 who were examined for  cardiovascular risks, including high blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar. Participants were divided in three groups who reported non-binge drinking, binge drinking (1-12 times yearly), or frequent binge drinking (more than 12 times yearly). Then researchers compared blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugar levels among them.

It was  found that :

  1. High frequency binge drinking (more than 12 times a year) was reported by 25.1 percent of men and 11.8 percent of women. Binge drinking 12 times a year or less was reported by 29.0 percent of men and 25.1 percent of women.
  2. Young men who reported repeated binge drinking had higher systolic blood pressure (the force on blood vessels when the heart beats) and higher blood total cholesterol than non-binge drinkers and binge drinking young women.
  3. Young women who said they binge drink had higher levels of blood sugar than non-binge drinking women.
  4. All results persisted even after considering diet and physical activity.

This study showed only an association, not a cause and effect relationship, between binge drinking and cardiovascular risk factors.The study concluded that

  • Young adult men (18‐45 years) with a repeated history of binge drinking have higher systolic blood pressure and total cholesterol levels compared with non–binge drinkers, whereas in women no effect of binge drinking was found on these parameters.

  • In men and women, binge drinking was associated with higher high‐density lipoprotein‐cholesterol levels, and glucose levels were higher in binge‐drinking women but lower in binge‐drinking men.

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in developed as well as developing countries all over world and its association with binge drinking certainly is a cause of concern.The young adults need to be screened and counseled about alcohol misuse, including binge drinking, and advised on how binge drinking may affect their cardiovascular health.The American Heart Association suggests moderate alcohol consumption for adults who choose to drink. The Association defines moderate alcohol consumption as an average of one to two drinks per day for men, and one drink per day for women. A drink is 12 ounces of beer, four ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof spirits.

More information: Journal of the American Heart Association (2018). DOI: 10.1161/JAHA.118.008733

Further reading Guideline on Treatment of Alcohol Use Disorder


Source: self

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