A new study in the US has found evidence supporting the long-standing belief that those living in parts of the world where shorter days cold drink more alcohol, potentially put people at higher risk of liver disease.
A new study conducted by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh Department of Gastroenterology, the new study to investigate whether living in a cold, dark climate causes people to consume more alcohol and what effect it can have on the risk of cirrhosis of alcohol.
The researchers collected information on 193 sovereign states as well as 50 countries and 3,144 districts in the United States using data from the World Health Organization, the World Meteorological Organization and the Institute for Health Values and Indices.
They then examined the relationship between climate factors such as average temperature and sun hours, alcohol consumption (measured as total per capita alcohol consumption), the percentage of the population drinking alcohol and the rate of excessive drinking.
The findings, published online in the journal The Pathology, Showed that with the temperature and the number of hours the day decreased, alcohol consumption increased.
The researchers also found evidence that colder, darker days also contribute to excessive drinking and a higher rate of alcoholic liver disease, one of the leading causes of death among those with prolonged alcohol use. The same results were found in comparing countries around the world and in comparing regions within the United States.
"This is something that everyone has assumed for decades, but no one has proved it scientifically, why do people in Russia drink so much? Why in Wisconsin?" Everyone said it was because it was cold, said senior author Ramon Butler. "But we can not find one paper that links the climate to alcohol consumption or alcohol cirrhosis." This is the first systematic study that demonstrates that around the world and in America, in cooler areas with less sun, you have more to drink more cirrhosis than alcohol.
The team noted that they also took into account other factors that may affect the population, for example, that most of the Arab population living in hot and desert areas with a large number of hours of sunlight is prevented from alcohol.
The researchers also controlled health factors that could exacerbate the effects of alcohol on the liver, such as viral hepatitis, obesity and smoking.
"It's important to emphasize the many confounding factors," said lead author Meritxell Ventura-Cots, PhD. "We tried to control as much as we could, for example, we tried to control religion and how it affects alcohol habits."
They explained that those cold climates may drink as alcohol is a vasodilator, which means that it increases the warm blood flow to the skin, which is filled with temperature sensors, and therefore can increase the feelings of heat. Drinking is also associated with depression, which tends to be worse during the winter months and when there is less sunlight. – AFP-Relaxnews