The authors calculated that having 10 or more drinks per week was associated with up to two years shorter life expectancy, which equates to losing 15 minutes of life for each unit above the safe amount, the equivalent of smoking a cigarette. They said recommended alcohol limits should be lowered to around 12.5 units - equal to five glasses of wine or pints of beer - a week.
Recommended drinking limits in the United States are now 98 grams for women and double for men - at two drinks per day - while limits in Italy, Spain and Portugal are nearly 50% higher.
Participants, a very limited group that excludes anyone under 50, anyone with a history of breast cancer, and a whole host of others-will be required to consume one drink a day for six years to see whether it will decrease their chances of getting heart disease compared to people who abstain.
"An important message from this study is that optimal life expectancy is associated with a relatively low level of alcohol consumption - less than 100 grams per week - and that higher levels of consumption increase mortality risk", Professor Yeap said.
Kevin McCarthy, Steve Scalise likely contenders for House speaker
Scalise brushed aside reports that he's preparing a run for the job following Ryan's surprise retirement announcement Wednesday. McCarthy previously made a bid to become House Speaker. "He and I are good friends", Scalise said.
"When the U.S. reviews their guidelines, I would hope they would use this as evidence to consider lowering the guidelines for men probably in line with female guidelines", the study's lead author, Angela Wood, a senior lecturer at the University of Cambridge, told The Washington Post. This slightly lower risk of heart attack tied to alcohol consumption must be balanced against the other "serious, and potentially fatal, cardiovascular diseases" linked with alcohol consumption, lead study author Dr. Angela Wood, a lecturer in biostatistics at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, said in the statement.
Rao, visiting lecturer in old age psychiatry at King's College London, told The Guardian the study "highlights the need to reduce alcohol related harm in baby boomers, an age group now at highest risk of rising alcohol misuse".
In numerous individual studies included in the meta-analysis, the participants were asked only once about how much alcohol they drank - and people are notoriously bad at accurately reporting their drinking. "Drinking is really fun, but you should not do it for your health".
Nutrition professor Jaap Seidell is pleased with the new study, he said to the Volkskrant. This new research suggests that this is still too much. The participants had to be current drinkers and were followed up for at least one year (most participants were followed up for between 5 and 18 years).
Although the study did find that drinking alcohol was associated with a lower risk of non-fatal heart attacks, experts said that "on balance", drinking alcohol has no health benefits. Most of the coverage was accurate, although the i chose to focus on the fact that Italy, Portugal and Spain have recommended alcohol limits which are higher than the United Kingdom and describing the UK's as some of the "strictest in the world" - although it did go on to point out that the research supports these lower guidelines. It considered about 600,000 people who drank alcohol.