Tuesday, August 7, 2018
A long term study published August 1 in the British Medical Journal followed the drinking habits of more than 9,000 civil servants between the age of 35 and 55 years old starting in 1983 and found a link between drinking excessively or not at all may both be linked to developing dementia.
The study determined that moderate drinking was comparable to 8 standard American drinks, and those drinking more than that "the risk of dementia increases as the number of alcohol units consumed increases," according to lead author Séverine Sabia, a researcher at Inserm, the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research. If a person drank themselves into hospitalization, the likelihood increased to 400%. On a surprising note, those that completely abstained from any alcohol consumption were nearly 50% more likely than moderate drinkers to develop dementia.
The study does have one noticeable drawback - it relied on self-reported alcohol consumption, and "people have a tendency to under report."
See Devon Frye, Drinking Too Much—or Not at All—May be Linked to Dementia, Psychology Today, August 7, 2018.