According to scientists, people who average more than two drinks a day have a 34 percent higher risk of stroke compared to those whose daily average amounts to less than half a drink.
In a research on the relation between alcohol consumption and stroke conducted on 11,644 middle-aged Swedish twins, researchers have examine the impact of genetic and behavior factors on risk of stroke. Researchers analyzed results from a Swedish registry of same-sex twins who answered questionnaires between 1967 and 1970. By 2010, the registry yielded 43 years of follow-up, including hospital records and cause-of-death data.
The research compared the effects of an average of more than two drinks daily (“heavy drinking”) to less than half a drink daily (“light drinking”). The results of study showed that:
- Heavy drinkers had about a 34 percent higher risk of stroke compared to light drinkers.
- Mid-life heavy drinkers (in their 50s and 60s) were likely to have a stroke five years earlier in life irrespective of genetic and early-life factors.
- Heavy drinkers had increased stroke risk in their mid-life compared to well-known risk factors like high blood pressure and diabetes.
- At around age 75, blood pressure and diabetes appeared to take over as one of the main influences on having a stroke.
In addition, there’re several other studies linked the alcohol to stroke. Researchers found that people who drink heavily in their 50s and 60s tend to suffer strokes earlier in life than light drinkers or non-drinkers. The research compared the risk from alcohol and risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes and smoking. It showed that the increased risk of stroke caused by heavy drinking is as high as the risk caused by high blood pressure or diabetes.
Among identical twins, siblings who had a stroke drank more than their siblings who hadn’t had a stroke, suggesting that midlife drinking raises stroke risks regardless of genetics and early behaviors, the researchers said. Midlife heavy drinkers — those in their 50s and 60s — were likely to have a stroke five years earlier in life, irrespective of genetic and behavior factors.
Drinking more than two alcoholic beverages daily in middle-age may raise your stroke risk more than traditional factors such as high blood pressure and diabetes, according to new research in the American Heart Association journal Stroke.
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Review Date: January 4, 2017 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017
Too Much Alcohol at Midlife Raises Stroke Risk, Study Finds. https://consumer.healthday.com/senior-citizen-information-31/misc-aging-news-10/too-much-alcohol-at-midlife-raises-stroke-risk-study-finds-695963.html. Accessed September 10th, 2016.
Too Much Alcohol at Midlife Raises Stroke Risk. http://www.webmd.com/stroke/news/20150129/too-much-alcohol-at-midlife-raises-stroke-risk-study-finds. Accessed September 10th, 2016.
Heavy drinking in middle-age may increase stroke risk more than traditional factors. http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2015-01/aha-hdi012615.php. Accessed September 10th, 2016.