Just one alcoholic drink a day 'increases your risk of having a stroke'

Just one small glass of wine a day can increase your stroke risk. [Photo: Getty]
Just one small glass of wine a day can increase your stroke risk. [Photo: Getty]

Drinking just one alcoholic beverage every day could increase your risk of having a stroke by as much as 10-15%.

This is according to a large-scale study of 160,000 Chinese adults, carried out over the course of a decade.

One drink a day was defined as either a small glass of wine, a bottle of beer or a single measure of a spirit.

For those consuming four drinks a day, the risk was increased by 35%.

The findings, conducted by UK researchers from the University of Oxford and Chinese researchers from the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, are said to be relevant to all populations.

Study co-author Professor Liming Li, from Peking University, said the study shows stroke risk is “increased” by the influence of alcohol.

He wrote in the report: “Stroke is a major cause of death and disability. This large collaborative study has shown that stroke rates are increased by alcohol. This should help inform personal choices and public health strategies.”

While previous studies may have linked moderate intake of alcohols like red wine with a lower stroke risk, researchers say this study disproves the “protective effects” of such habits.

Professor Zhengming Chen, co-author from the Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, says: “There are no protective effects of moderate alcohol intake against stroke.”

“Even moderate alcohol consumption increases the chances of having a stroke. The findings for heart attack were less clear-cut, so we plan to collect more evidence.”

This isn’t the only danger for regular alcohol drinkers.

Last week, research found a bottle of wine a week is as bad as smoking 10 cigarettes for women.

Meanwhile, for men, one bottle has the equivalent risk of smoking five cigarettes each week.

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