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Korean J Fam Med. 2014 Nov;35(6):295-302. doi: 10.4082/kjfm.2014.35.6.295. Epub 2014 Nov 21.

Influence of the Flushing Response in the Relationship between Alcohol Consumption and Cardiovascular Disease Risk.

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1
Department of Family Medicine, Research Institute for Medical Sciences, Chungnam National University School of Medicine, Daejeon, Korea.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between cardiovascular disease risk and alcohol consumption according to facial flushing after drinking among Korean men.

METHODS:

The subjects were 1,817 Korean men (non-drinker group, 283 men; drinking-related facial flushing group, 662 men; non-flushing group, 872 men) >30 years who had undergone comprehensive health examinations at the health promotion center of a Chungnam National University Hospital between 2007 and 2009. Alcohol consumption and alcohol-related facial flushing were assessed through a questionnaire. Cardiovascular disease risk was investigated based on the 2008 Framingham Heart Study. With the non-drinker group as reference, logistic regression was used to analyze the relationship between weekly alcohol intake and cardiovascular disease risk within 10 years for the flushing and non-flushing groups, with adjustment for confounding factors such as body mass index, diastolic blood pressure, low density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglycerides, and exercise patterns.

RESULTS:

Individuals in the non-flushing group with alcohol consumption of ≤4 standard drinks (1 standard drink = 14 g of alcohol) per week had significantly lower moderate or high cardiovascular disease risk than individuals in the nondrinker group (adjusted odds ratio, 0.51; 95% confidence interval, 0.37 to 0.71). However, no significant relationship between the drinking amount and cardiovascular disease risk was observed in the flushing group.

CONCLUSION:

Cardiovascular disease risk is likely lowered by alcohol consumption among non-flushers, and the relationship between the drinking amount and cardiovascular disease risk may differ according to facial flushing after drinking, representing an individual's vulnerability.

KEYWORDS:

Alcohol; Cardiovascular Diseases; Flushing; Risk

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