Alcohol Consumption May Increase Stroke Mortality

April 20, 2014

New research conducted by the University of Eastern Finland and published in Acta Neurologica Scandinavica and retrieved in Medical News Today shows that men who drink alcohol more than twice a week have a risk of stroke mortality three times greater than those who drink no alcohol at all. Interestingly, the study showed that the actual amount of alcohol consumed did not make a difference to the elevated mortality rates.

However, this does not mean that we can consume any amount of alcohol that we wish.  In fact, heavy consumption of alcohol actually increases the risk of any ischemic stroke in the first place. Also, the risk of a cerebral hemorrhage increases in proportion to an increase in alcohol consumption.

Our perspective: This study is rather shocking in that consumption of alcohol twice a week has hereto for been considered relatively minimal and in some cases, even healthy. Further, we are quick to judge alcohol-related issues based on the quantity of alcohol consumption, rather than the frequency of consumption. We look forward to seeing additional supporting studies in order to understand the true nature of the relationship between the frequency of alcohol consumption and mortality risk.

Of course, it is also worth noting that there are many other risk factors associated with strokes and stroke mortality. However, this research shows that the dangers of alcohol consumption are not black-and-white and there is much more that we need to learn despite all of the research that we have conducted so far.

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