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This is how you benefit from abstaining from alcohol
Researchers have now found that women can improve their mental health and wellbeing simply by not consuming alcohol.
The recent study by the University of Hong Kong found that giving up alcohol in women improves their mental health and well-being. The results of the study were published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ).
Completely avoiding alcohol has positive effects
Although moderate alcohol consumption may be part of the diet, according to recent recommendations, new evidence suggests that people who completely avoid alcohol enjoy the highest level of mental well-being.
Women particularly benefited from abstaining from alcohol
The study compared how alcohol consumption affects people's health. For this, a moderate consumption and a complete waiver were compared. Participants who never consumed alcohol had the highest psychological well-being at the beginning of the five-year analysis. For women who drink alcohol, stopping their alcohol consumption was also associated with a positive change in mental health. Stopping alcohol consumption improves overall health and mental well-being, especially for women, the study authors report.
Data from more than 40,000 people were analyzed
The research team analyzed data from 10,386 FAMILY Cohort participants and the data from the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions, a representative survey of 31,079 people from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism in the United States. The results were determined taking into account socio-demographic factors such as BMI (Body Mass Index) and tobacco consumption (smoking).
Alcohol consumption in the world is expected to increase
Global alcohol consumption is expected to increase further if no effective strategies are used against it. Previous recommendations indicated that moderate drinking did not impair or even improve the health-related quality of life. But now the current study comes to the conclusion that the complete absence of alcohol is associated with positive changes in mental well-being, so that it approaches the level of lifelong abstinence.
Drinking increases risk of stroke and heart failure
The results raise further questions about where the limit for safe and sensible alcohol consumption is. For example, a study by the internationally highly recognized University of Cambridge last year found that regular drinking of more than the recommended limit values is just as harmful to health as smoking. The authors of this study estimated that a 40-year-old who drinks two liters of beer or a glass of wine a day dies two years earlier and is at higher risk of stroke, fatal aneurysms, and heart failure. (as)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- Xiaoxin I. Yao, Michael Y. Ni, Felix Cheung, Joseph T. Wu, C. Mary Schooling, Gabriel M. Leung, Herbert Pang: Change in moderate alcohol consumption and quality of life: evidence from 2 population-based cohorts, in Canadian Medical Association Journal, CMAJ