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Korean J Fam Med. 2013 Jul;34(4):250-7. doi: 10.4082/kjfm.2013.34.4.250. Epub 2013 Jul 24.

Effect of alcohol consumption on risk of hyperhomocysteinemia based on alcohol-related facial flushing response.

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Department of Family Medicine, Research Institute for Medical Sciences, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon, Korea.



This study examined the relationship between alcohol consumption and hyperhomocysteinemia based on facial flushing caused by drinking.


Among male patients aged ≥ 18 years who visited Health Promotion Center of Chungnam National University Hospital in Daejeon from January 2008 to December 2010, 948 males (182 nondrinkers, 348 subjects with drinking-related facial flushing, and 418 subjects without drinking-related facial flushing) were selected. After adjusting for confounding factors such as age, body mass index, hypertension, diabetes, smoking, triglycerides, high density lipoprotein cholesterol, and gamma-glutamyl transpeptidase, a multiple logistic regression analysis was performed to assess the risk of hyperhomocysteinemia in the nonfacial flushing and facial flushing groups compared with the nondrinkers.


After adjusting for confounding factors, risk of hyperhomocysteinemia was significantly lower in the group with a weekly alcohol consumption of < 8 standard drinks (1 drink = 14 g alcohol) in the nonfacial flushing group (<4 drinks: odds ratio [OR], 0.27; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.10 to 0.74; 4≤, <8 drinks: OR, 0.21; 95% CI, 0.06 to 0.73). Risk of hyperhomocysteinemia was significantly lower in the group with a weekly alcohol consumption < 4 drinks in the facial flushing group (OR, 0.30; 95% CI, 0.13 to 0.68).


Our results suggest that the risk of hyperhomocysteinemia is likely lowered by alcohol consumption based on drinking quantity, as lowering the risk of hyperhomocysteinemia differs depending on vulnerability associated with facial flushing.


Alcohol Drinking; Flushing; Homocysteine

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