What Is The Link Between Alcohol And Stroke Risk?


According to the World Health Organization (WHO), stroke is the second most common source of death across the globe and causes roughly 11% of fatalities annually.

Furthermore, according to the World Stroke Organization (WSO), from 1990 through 2019, stroke cases surged by 70%, and the number of people who died from stroke rose by 43%.

Stroke patients’ cognitive and physical limitations frequently restrict their ability to work for their remaining lives on earth.

While the primary age of people who develop stroke is 44 and older, younger folks are also developing stroke recently. According to the WSO, roughly 8% of the 13.7 million strokes occurring yearly are from people below 44 years old. 

However, lifestyles like alcohol use, which have been rising worldwide, are implicated in over 90% of stroke occurrences. A typical example in Asia is that from 1990 through 2007, a 104% increase in alcohol consumption among individuals was observed. According to findings from 2019, there will be a significant rise in the worldwide consumption of Alcohol.

Even though excessive drinking of Alcohol increases the likelihood of stroke, little is documented on how modest drinking affects the risk of developing stroke over time.

Alcohol Consumption And Stroke Risk

Researchers analyzed data from 1,536,668 women’s and men’s national health records for an experiment.

Between 2009 and 2012, volunteers completed four yearly health tests. Their ages varied from 20 – 39. The main aspect of the patient’s health was their risk of stroke.

According to weekly alcohol intake in grams, the study divided alcohol intake into four groups:

● Heavy alcohol intake of above 210 grams

● Moderate alcohol intake of between 105-210 grams

● Mild alcohol intake of between 0-105 grams

● No alcohol intake

For comparison purposes, 105 g of Alcohol equals one & and a half regular wine bottles or seven and a half 12-ounce beers.

Along with other morbidities, including cancer, diabetes, and hypertension, investigators also examined individuals’ income, sex, and age.

Follow-up with the participants lasted approximately 5.6 years. And 3,153 patients had a stroke throughout the follow-up duration.

After reviewing the data, the investigators discovered that stroke incidence rose gradually along with accumulating alcohol use.

A 19% greater risk of stroke was reported in subjects who had drunk moderately to heavily for two years. The risk was increased by 22% for individuals three years and 23% for individuals four years.

Whereas the incidence of light consumption was not statistically relevant, researchers discovered that heavy users had a 28% increased stroke risk compared to non-drinkers.

As a preventive care technique, the researchers concluded that young individuals who drink heavily should be encouraged to reduce their alcohol intake.

Why Is Alcohol Use Associated With A Higher Risk Of Stroke?

According to Professor Tamar Rodney from the John Hopkins School of nursing, who participated in the research, “Alcohol has an impact on a variety of human organs, mainly since blood is the vehicle it travels through. The brain is one of the many parts that Alcohol will swiftly impair due to the way the body metabolizes Alcohol.”

“Recurring alcohol exposure to the brain can create processes that result in inadequate oxygen-rich blood circulation or cerebral clots, which could result in a stroke. Moreover, the brain is only one of the numerous organs that can malfunction as a result of excessive consumption of Alcohol,” Rodney said.