Conclusions

The risks and benefits of alcohol on health describe a J-shaped relation. This relation between alcohol intake and all-cause mortality is influenced by several factors, including age, since the J shape seems to persist among the elderly but not among young subjects; sex, since the ascending leg of the curve seems to be steeper for women than for men; drinking pattern, since a small daily intake seems to imply a decreased mortality from cardiovascular disease, whereas binge drinking does not; and type of alcohol, since wine drinkers in some studies seem to be at a lower risk than beer and spirits drinkers.

See also: Alcohol: Absorption, Metabolism and Physiological Effects; Effects of Consumption on Diet and Nutritional Status. Cancer: Epidemiology and Associations Between Diet and Cancer; Effects on Nutritional Status. Cholesterol: Sources, Absorption, Function and Metabolism. Coronary Heart Disease: Prevention. Diabetes Mellitus: Etiology and Epidemiology; Classification and Chemical Pathology. Hypertension: Dietary Factors. Obesity: Definition, Etiology and Assessment; Complications. Older People: Nutrition-Related Problems.

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