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Alcohol consumption affects rich and poor differently, says study
Posted in Addiction, Alcohol

Excessive alcohol consumption or binge drinking does have a serious impact on a person’s physical and mental health. It can lead to a series of chronic diseases and other problems, such as heart attack, liver disease, stroke and digestive problems. While the negative effects of drinking are relatively well-known, it seems like the socioeconomic status of the person has a lot to do with the associated risks, says a recent study.

According to the Norwegian study, published online in the journal PLOS in January 2018, the significance of alcohol consumption as a major factor in heart disease risk varied with an individual’s income. As poor people tend to drink less than their rich counterparts, they were more likely to be hospitalized or die from alcohol-related illnesses. The study that examined data on more than 200,000 Norwegians adults found that those who had two to three drinks a week had a lower risk of dying from heart diseases, especially if they were wealthy. As per researchers, the differences between socioeconomic groups emerged in the group that drank moderately. They found that moderate drinkers in the highest income groups were well-protected from the likelihood of heart disease.

Relationship between socioeconomic status and alcohol-related diseases

For the study, the research team led by Eirik Degerud from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health examined socioeconomic status, health and cause of death of 207,394 Norwegian adults born before Oct. 15, 1960. Based on the data, even though participants from the lower classes drank less and were more likely to not drink at all, they still experienced more alcohol-related hospitalizations and deaths. Additionally, those in the lower socioeconomic strata were more likely to be female, older in age and have other diseases and risk factors for heart diseases. On the other hand, those who enjoyed a higher socioeconomic status drank more frequently, were more likely to binge drink and had a lower prevalence of heart diseases.

According to the authors, while people drinking moderately had better chances of avoiding heart diseases, binge drinkers had the highest death rates throughout people of all incomes. They also observed that in cases of “very frequent” drinkers comprising those who drank four to seven times a week were at high risk to die from cardiovascular disease. But the trend was visible only in low-income groups. The rich counterparts seemed to fare just as well if they drank frequently in moderate quantity.

Evidence-based treatment for alcohol-related disorders

Alcohol dependence or addiction is a chronic disease that affects both brain and body. Drinking too much can cause one to experience a range of negative consequences, including risk to one’s life and harm to others (fights, unsafe sex and car crashes under intoxication). It also brings emotional changes making the person more aggressive with little or no self-control, irritable, physically or verbally abusive, and hopeless about everything. Considered to be the third leading cause of preventable deaths in the United States, alcohol-related causes claim an estimated 88,000 American lives each year.

A leader in providing treatment for addiction-related disorders, Sovereign Health of El Paso, Texas offers holistic alcohol addiction treatment to both adult men and women (aged 18 or older) that combines detox, medications and therapy. The recovery programs offered at Sovereign Health are tailor-made to suit patient’s requirements. To learn more about our top-notch addiction treatment services or to locate our finest alcohol rehab centers, call our 24/7 helpline 866-399-5740 and speak to our admissions team. You can also chat online with a representative to know more.

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