Moderate alcohol consumption tied to lower heart failure risk

October 16, 2017

(HealthDay)—Moderate alcohol consumption is associated with reduced risk of heart failure but not atrial fibrillation (AF), according to a study published online Oct. 11 in JACC: Heart Failure.

Augusto Di Castelnuovo, Ph.D., from the IRCCS Instituto Neurologico Mediterraneo NEUROMED in Italy, and colleagues analyzed 22,824 individuals from the general population with complete data on , AF, and . Participants were followed for a median of 8.2 years (183,912 person-years).

The researchers identified 943 and 554 incident cases of heart failure and AF, respectively, during follow-up. Both former and occasional drinkers showed a risk of developing heart failure that was comparable to never drinkers. Drinking one to four drinks/day was associated with a of heart failure, with a maximum risk reduction of 22 percent at 20 g/day independent of confounders. There was no correlation for alcohol consumption with AF onset. Restriction of the analyses to regular or only-wine drinkers or according to sex, age, social status, or adherence to a Mediterranean diet was associated with very similar results.

"Consumption of alcohol in moderation was associated with a lower incidence of heart failure but not with development of ," the authors write.

The study was funded in part by Pfizer.

Explore further: Risk factors explain most heart failure risk in incident A-fib

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