Arguments on how much alcohol is good for you and just how good for you certain amounts of alcohol can be, vary. News reports often circulate with new studies which find a glass of red wine does the heart good, and then, new findings that a glass of red wine doesn’t do the heart good. Evidence toward the actual health status of alcohol is constantly flip-flopping, which neither supports nor negates the ongoing binge drinking culture which is prevalent throughout the world. Too often, these new studies are concentrated in specific areas and specific populations. However, one new study breaks the barriers of many before it and includes a worldwide representation of data. Conclusively, the study found, there is simply no amount of alcohol which is actually healthy for humans.
The University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation conducted the study by analyzing a compilation of data regarding global alcohol consumption, U.S. News reports. In addition to finding that alcohol consumption generally isn’t good for health at all, the study also discovered trends of disease, disabilities, and death at an international level.
Looking at data from 1990 to 2016, the study examined alcohol consumption trends and effects for 195 countries- which is all of the documented countries on earth. Researchers were able to conclude that there is no safe level of drinking and that there is no data to support that any guidelines for alcohol consumption actually promote “safe and healthy” drinking. For example, many countries might suggest health benefits from consuming only two alcoholic beverages per day. Citing the study, the article emphasizes that contrary to the findings of other studies which suggest such health benefits, “consuming zero standard drinks daily minimizes the overall risk to health”.
At once, the trend of binge drinking or even “normalized” drinking culture persists, yet at the same time, there is a growing health-focused culture which is normalizing abstinence. Perceptions on alcohol consumption are changing for the better, shying away from consumption at all as part of a healthier lifestyle. Even men who aren’t alcoholic or meet the criteria for any kind of alcohol abuse are choosing to abstain from alcohol substances as a whole. Comprehensive and internationally representative studies like these paint a broader picture of the true state of alcohol in our world and depict more accurate information on how alcohol affects our health.
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