Friday, May 1, 2009

Alcohol consumption may increase the risk of Atrial Fibrillation

As a followup to my last post on alcohol, I checked into Dr. Fuhrman's statement that even moderate amounts of alcohol may increase the risk of Atrial Fibrillation. Here a study published in the December 3rd, 2008 Journal of the American Medical Association that links alcohol consumption and AF in women. The study concludes:

Among healthy middle-aged women, consumption of up to 2 alcoholic beverages per day was not associated with an increased risk of incident atrial fibrillation. Heavier consumption of 2 or more drinks per day, however, was associated with a small but statistically significant increased risk of atrial fibrillation.

This study reported in Denmark in 2004, concludes that men in the higher alcohol consumption groups have a higher risk of developing AF, but women did not.

Maybe the bottom line is that Atrial Fibrillation is associated with alcohol consumption only at the higher intake levels (over two drinks per day). Very occasional alcohol consumption is probably okay, but to me....why risk it, especially if it plays games with your appetite and moods?


kneecap said...

I like your final point about it playing with your mood and appetite. that is what keeps me from consuming it. it's a drug, it's toxic and on the day after, you have to detox, which for me means feeling tired and wanting something to help me rebound (food or more alcohol).

kneecap said...

I just worry I'm getting really boring, what with my abstaining from coffee and alcohol and most restaurant food. And now I'm even going to church. My old friends won't even recognize me.

Howard Veit said...

I don't know about church...I am not enthusiastic about religion. But, the rest of what you do doesn't sound boring..Astronomer, cyclist, healthy nutrition person. Sounds interesting (quirky)....good.

The standard American Dieters, golf players, country club goers, TV watchers....that, to me, is boring.

How can you be fascinated with the stars and the universe and be boring?????

kneecap said...

the religion thing is new for me and I never would have predicted it 3 years ago. Now I am very enthusiastic about religion in the sense of finding community to grow spiritually and to do community service. I very much like community. And I learned that religion doesn't have to be about dogma and being told what to think. And you don't have to believe in God to be religious.

my astronomer friends probably don't find it interesting that I'm an astronomer. actually good point about the healthy eating--people do find that interesting. I have to remember healthy eating is not a lack of activitiy (not eating this and not drinking that), but a completely different activity, which does make it interesting.

Howard Veit said...


I think you would enjoy Blue Zones by Dan Buettner. He documents four cultures where longevity is much higher. One of the common secrets....they seek out groups and love to be a part of a supportive community.