Alcoholic Beverage Preference and Risk of Becoming a Heavy Drinker

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Background.Studies have suggested that wine drinkers are at lower risk of death than beer or spirits drinkers. The aim of this study is to examine whether the risk of becoming a heavy or excessive drinker differs among individuals who prefer different types of alcoholic beverages.Methods. In a longitudinal study of 10,330 moderate drinkers from Copenhagen, Denmark, we used logistic regression analyses to address the risk of becoming a heavy or excessive drinker (above 14 and 21 drinks per week, respectively, for women and above 21 and 35 drinks per week for men) according to preference of wine, beer, or spirits.Results. Compared with those who preferred wine, those who preferred beer tended to have increased risk of becoming heavy and excessive drinkers. Women who preferred beer had odds ratios of 1.14 (95% CI = 0.87-1.50) for becoming heavy drinkers and 1.50 (95% CI = 0.93-2.43) for becoming excessive drinkers. For men who preferred beer the ORs were 1.16 (95% CI = 0.84-1.58) and 1.81 (95% CI = 0.85-3.82).Conclusion. The finding that moderate wine drinkers appear to be at lower risk of becoming heavy and excessive drinkers may add to the explanation of the reported beverage-specific differences in morbidity and mortality.

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