Study links moderate to heavy drinking in youngsters to higher risk of stroke

Reducing alcohol consumption may be emphasised in young adults with heavy drinking habits as part of any strategy to prevent stroke

People in their 20s and 30s who drink moderate to heavy amounts of alcohol may be more likely to have a stroke as young adults than people who drink low amounts or no alcohol, according to a study published in the online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. The risk of stroke increased the more years people reported moderate or heavy drinking.

“The rate of stroke among young adults has been increasing over the last few decades, and stroke in young adults causes death and serious disability,” said study author Eue-Keun Choi, MD, PhD, of Seoul National University in the Republic of Korea. “If we could prevent stroke in young adults by reducing alcohol consumption, that could potentially have a substantial impact on the health of individuals and the overall burden of stroke on society.”

People who were moderate to heavy drinkers for two or more years of the study were about 20% more likely to have a stroke than people who were light drinkers or did not drink alcohol. Light drinkers were those who drank less than 105 grams per week, or less than 15 ounces per day. As the number of years of moderate to heavy drinking increased, so did the risk of stroke.

The study was supported by the Korea Medical Device Development Fund and the Korea National Research Foundation.

Image credit- getty images

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