Alcohol use is a leading health risk factor. Its impact is complex and includes purported benefits at low levels for certain health conditions. Using data from 694 individual and population-level studies in 195 countries and territories, researchers evaluated the global impact of alcohol use and estimated the levels of consumption that minimize an individual’s total attributable risk on health.
Comments: This analysis provides a global view; the exact distribution of each alcohol-attributable illness will vary by locale. Nonetheless, Alcohol use contributes largely to global death and disability, particularly among men. These results indicate that the safest level of drinking is none, which should encourage health agencies to revise current recommendations. We should not drink alcohol because we think that it is good for our health.
Nicolas Bertholet, MD, MSc
Reference: GBD 2016 Alcohol Collaborators. Alcohol use and burden for 195 countries and territories, 1990-2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016.
Lancet. 2018;392(10152):1015–1035. http://www.bu.edu/aodhealth/2018/10/25/for-your-health-no-amount-of-alcohol-is-safe/
Sep 3, 2018
Australians are drinking the least alcohol they have in more than 50 years.
That’s what you would find, on average, in 224 stubbies of beer, 38 bottles of wine, 17 bottles of cider, 33 cans of pre-mixed drinks and four bottles of spirits.
A drop in the amount of beer drunk has been the biggest contributor to the overall fall in the year.
Australians downed 3.4 per cent less pure alcohol from beer, or 2.6 million litres in 2016-17, compared to the year before.
But it’s still beer that Aussies like to drink the most, with the beverage accounting for 39.2 per cent of all alcohol consumed in the year.
Wine was a close second, accounting for 38.3 per cent of pure alcohol, followed by spirits (13.1 per cent), ready-to-drink beverages (6.0 per cent) and cider (3.4 per cent).
However, they can also underestimate the true level of alcohol drunk by each Australian, given about a fifth simply don’t drink at all.
EXCESSIVE middle-aged drinkers risk setting a similar path for their kids as booze-related hospital admissions soar among older people.
Construction and hospitality industry workers have been identified as among the heaviest drinkers.
Most middle-aged people are drinking at home, but heavy sessions at sports bars also pose a risk.
New VicHealth analysis shows alcohol-related hospital admissions among people aged 40-65 increased in all but three of Melbourne’s 31 council areas between 2011 and 2015. VicHealth principal program officer Maya Rivis told the Sunday Herald Sun middle-aged parents who drank heavily could end up passing bad habits on to their kids. “Young people model their parents’ behaviours,’’ Ms Rivis said. “There is evidence to say if the parents drink a lot, then a young person is more likely to take up drinking.” Stonnington, taking in South Yarra and Prahran, posted the highest rate of alcohol-related hospital admissions in 2014-15 , with 200 residents treated for every 10,000 people.
Port Phillip, Greater Dandenong, Bayside, Frankston, Yarra, Knox and the Mornington Peninsula were also problem areas.
Manningham, Glen Eira and Yarra Ranges had the biggest percentage increase in hospitalisations, with rates soaring more than 20 per cent.
Uniting senior social justice advocate Mark Zirnsak said greater controls on bottle shop numbers was needed to curb access to alcohol, which was also linked to assaults and family violence.
Copyright © 2018 The Herald Sun
Alcohol takes a rapid toll on the brain, as most of us know, and caution is well warranted about what we choose to do while under its influence. What isn’t so well known is the hit our brains take much later, after the booze has left the system.
The latest research on the topic was a meta-analysis of several studies that examined brain impairment hours to a day after heavy drinking. With few exceptions, these studies showed that our cognitive abilities, like attention and memory, are debilitated even when alcohol in the blood is no longer measurable.
“Impaired performance in these abilities reflects poorer concentration and focus, decreased memory and reduced reaction times,” said lead study author Craig Gunn of the Department of Psychology at the University of Bath.
For complete story go to Longer than you think!
Esther Han 28 August 2018
Thousands of posters warning pregnant women about the dangers of alcohol have had to be removed from the walls of hospitals and GP clinics around the country.
Fairfax Media can reveal DrinkWise, a "safe drinking" group almost entirely funded by alcohol companies, recently withdrew 2400 pregnancy warning posters after doctors and health groups told it the message was "utterly wrong".
While the headline "It's safest not to drink while pregnant" reflected government guidelines, the text beneath, including the words "It's not known if alcohol is safe to drink when you are pregnant", was considered misleading and inaccurate.
Tony Bartone, president of the AMA, who raised concerns with DrinkWise, said the small print was "fundamentally incorrect" because the science was clear that alcohol had devastating effects on unborn babies.
"Alcohol is a teratogen, it can cause birth defects, so we couldn't understand why that messaging was there," he said.
"I told them about the misleading information and potential outcomes and they responded in a quick and timely manner."
Dr Bartone questioned how DrinkWise was able to spread "misinformation" in the first place and called for greater transparency.
"The message was utterly wrong. If it hadn’t been for our vigilance, it would have been blasted on the walls of GP surgeries," he said.