Alcohol Consumption Raises Risk of Developing Hypertension in Men
Alcohol-related hypertension is a well-defined clinical entity with a comprehensive foundation based on a large number of cross-sectional and prospective epidemiological studies. In a study, researchers reiterated the association between alcohol intake and the risk of developing hypertension, especially in men. The study findings were published in the journal Nutrition on July 22,...
Alcohol-related hypertension is a well-defined clinical entity with a comprehensive foundation based on a large number of cross-sectional and prospective epidemiological studies. In a study, researchers reiterated the association between alcohol intake and the risk of developing hypertension, especially in men.
The study findings were published in the journal Nutrition on July 22, 2021.
Elevated blood pressure (BP) is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease (CVD), causing significant loss of years of quality of life. Although previous studies have already confirmed the harmful effects of alcohol consumption on the cardiovascular system, especially by elevating BP levels, the strength of this relationship was not investigated in the Brazilian population. Therefore, Dr Maria C.B. Molina and her team conducted a study to investigate the effect of alcoholic-beverage consumption on blood pressure (BP) and incidence of hypertension, after a 4-y follow-up, in participants of the Longitudinal Adult Health Study (ELSA-Brasil).
In this prospective study, the researchers analyzed information from 3,990 participants, both men and women, from educational and research institutions, at baseline (2008–2010) and follow-up (2012–2014). They evaluated the socioeconomic, hemodynamic, anthropometric, and health data. They determined hypertension as systolic BP ≥ 140 mm Hg and/or diastolic BP ≥ 90 mm Hg and/or use of antihypertensive medication. They assessed the change in alcohol consumption (g/d) by subtracting total consumed at follow-up from total consumed at baseline and categorized it in tertiles.
Key findings of the study:
- Upon analysis, the researchers found that consumption of alcoholic beverages was associated with changes in BP and hypertension only in men.
- They also found that individuals who reduced total consumption of alcohol showed a smaller increase in systolic BP (1.1 versus 2.3 mm Hg) and diastolic BP (1.3 versus 2.2 mm Hg) compared to individuals who increased consumption.
- They noted that individuals in the highest tertiles of the total consumption of alcohol (odds ratio [OR], 1.62) and consumption of beer (OR, 1.51), wine (OR, 1.71), and spirits (OR, 2.01) showed higher odds for hypertension compared to the lowest tertile.
The authors concluded, "Increased consumption of alcoholic beverages was positively associated with increased BP levels and higher chances of developing hypertension in men."
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