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Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2011 Nov;35(11):2075-81. doi: 10.1111/j.1530-0277.2011.01559.x. Epub 2011 Aug 16.

The association between alcohol consumption patterns and adherence to food consumption guidelines.

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Department of Preventive Medicine and Public Health, School of Medicine, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid/IdiPAZ, Madrid, Spain.



To examine the association between alcohol consumption patterns and adherence to major food consumption guidelines in adults in Spain.


Telephone survey of 12,037 persons, representative of the population age 18 to 64 years in the region of Madrid, conducted from 2000 to 2005. The threshold between average moderate and excessive drinking was 40 g alcohol/d in men and 24 g/d in women. Binge drinking was defined as intake of ≥80 g alcohol in men and ≥60 g in women during 1 drinking session in the last 30 days. Food consumption was measured with a 24-hour recall. Statistical analyses were performed using logistic regression and adjusted for the main confounders.


In total, 4.3% of study participants were excessive drinkers and 10.3% binge drinkers; 6.5% preferred spirits and 24.2% drank with meals. In comparison with never drinking, average moderate drinking with binge drinking was associated with excessive meat consumption (>1 serving/d). Excessive alcohol consumption without binge drinking was associated with insufficient intake of milk products (<2 servings/d) and excessive consumption of meat, fish, and eggs (>2 servings/d). Excessive drinkers with binge drinking more often did not meet the guidelines on consumption of fruit and vegetables (<3 servings/d), milk products, and meat. Excessive drinkers, with and without binge drinking, were more likely to skip a meal, especially breakfast. Consumption mainly of spirits was associated with insufficient fruit and vegetable consumption, and with skipping a meal. Finally, drinking at mealtimes was associated with poor adherence to most of the food consumption guidelines. No dietary differences between men and women were found in relation to alcohol consumption.


Average excessive alcohol consumption, binge drinking, preference for spirits, and drinking alcohol at mealtimes are associated with poor adherence to major food consumption guidelines.

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