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According to a recent study, regularly drinking above the UK alcohol guidelines can take years off your life. The report of 600,000 drinkers approximated that consuming 10 to 15 alcoholic drinks each week can potentially reduce a person's life by between one and two years.
They also claimed that those who consume over 18 drinks per week could very well cut four to five years of their lives. The 2016 UK recommendations suggest a maximum of 14 units per week, that’s just six pints of beer or seven glasses of wine.
The study claimed that their conclusions reinforced the new recommendations as well as not finding a heightened risk of death for light drinkers.
Researchers, who analysed the health and drinking habits of alcohol drinkers in 19 countries, modelled what amount of life an individual could anticipate to lose should they continue to drink the same way for the remainder of their lives from the age of 40 onwards.
They learned that those who consumed the equivalent of 5 to 10 drinks per week could well reduce their lives by as much as six months.
They additionally identified drinking alcohol elevated the risk of cardiovascular disease, with every 12.5 units of alcohol people consumed above the recommendations increasing the risk of:
Alcohol consumption was associated with a reduced risk of non-fatal heart disease, however experts explained this benefit was eliminated by a greater risk of other types of the disease.
Previous research has thought that consuming red wine might be beneficial to our hearts, but some experts believe such benefits have been over hyped.
One other study identified consuming 3 to 4 times per week was associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes.
A professor of cardiovascular medicine said, "This study makes clear that on balance there are no health benefits from drinking alcohol, which is usually the case when things sound too good to be true, and although non-fatal heart attacks are less likely in people who drink, this benefit is swamped by the increased risk of other forms of heart disease including fatal heart attacks and stroke."
Researchers claim the study questions the notion that drinking in moderation is good for our health.
The recommended limits in Italy, Portugal, and Spain are nearly 50% more than the UK recommendations, and in the USA the top limit for men is almost double this.
Nevertheless, the UK “should not rest on its laurels” warned a British senior dietician.
"Many people in the UK regularly drink over what's recommended. We should always remember that alcohol guidelines should act as a limit, not a target, and try to drink well below this threshold."
A lead author of the study said, "The key message of this research is that, if you already drink alcohol, drinking less may help you live longer and lower your risk of several cardiovascular conditions.”
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