Two Drinks Per Day May be Harmful to Elderly
BOSTON, May 27 (UPI) — Although light to moderate drinking has been shown to be good for the heart, two or more alcoholic beverages every day may actually damage the hearts of elderly people.
Researchers reviewed weekly alcohol consumption among 4,466 people with an average age of 76 and found that the more people drank, the more damage was done to their hearts.
Men who consume more than 14 drinks per week, considered to be heavy drinking, were found in the study to have enlarged hearts. Elderly women, however, were found to be much more susceptible to the effects of drinking lightly, which the study considered to be 7 or fewer drinks per week.
“In spite of potential benefits of low alcohol intake, our findings highlight the possible hazards to cardiac structure and function by increased amounts of alcohol consumption in the elderly, particularly among women,” said Alexandra Gonçalves, M.D.; Ph.D., a postdoctoral research fellow at Brigham and Women’s in Boston, in a press release. “This reinforces the U.S. recommendations stating that those who drink should do so with moderation.”
The study is published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Imaging.