Abstract 1358: Alcohol Consumption and Cardiovascular Risk Among United States Adults: An Analysis From the US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (1999–2006)
BACKGROUND: Multiple observational studies report the association between moderate alcohol consumption and lower risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). However, studies on the CHD risk association with alcohol among US population is limited to smaller sample size. Also, data on the effect of higher alcohol consumption on CHD risk is sparse and confounding.
METHODS: We used nationally representative data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys 1999–2006 among US adults aged 20–79 years, with self reported alcohol consumption. Patients with CHD, incomplete data on alcohol or FRS were excluded. Moderate alcohol was defined as <14 drinks/week for men and <7 drinks/week for women as per current Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Cohort was stratified into no alcohol (955 men, 1868 women), moderate alcohol (1567 men, 1116 women) and heavy alcohol (424 men, 284 women) subgroups. Framingham risk score (FRS), a validated surrogate assessment tool of ten year CHD risk, was calculated using updated Framingham Heart Study algorithm.
RESULTS: Compared to no alcohol group (mean FRS; men 8.0±7.2, women 6.5±8.0), subjects with moderate alcohol intake had lower FRS (mean; men 6.5±7.2, women 5.4±7.9) whereas heavy alcohol use had higher FRS (mean, men 8.6±6.5, women 9.1±7.8). After adjusting for CHD risk confounders (older age, obesity, dyslipidemia, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, smoking and family history of CHD), moderate alcohol consumption remained an independent predictor for lower FRS in both men (β coeff −0.43, 95% CI −0.84 – −0.02, 0.04) and women (β coeff −0.57, −0.93 – −0.21, 0.002). However, heavy alcohol use was not associated with FRS after adjustment for CHD risk confounders (β coeff, 95% CI, p value; men 0.00, −0.58 – 0.58, 0.9 and women 0.42, −0.2 – 1.04, 0.2).
CONCLUSIONS: A significant proportion (43.2%) of adults reported consuming alcohol in moderate dose. In this multiethnic cohort, compared to no alcohol or heavy alcohol consumption, moderate alcohol intake was associated with a reduced risk score both in men and women. These results complement existing alcohol related mortality risk reduction data in literature. The beneficial effects of moderate alcohol use may be mediated by effects on lipids or inflammatory markers.