25 October 2016 In Cardiovascular System
Ethanol consumption is associated with left ventricular dysfunction in heavy ethanol drinkers. The effect of moderate ethanol intake on left ventricular function in hypertension, however, is unknown. We investigated the relationship between ethanol consumption and cardiac changes in nonalcoholic hypertensive patients. In 335 patients with primary hypertension, we assessed daily ethanol consumption by questionnaires that combined evaluation of recent and lifetime ethanol exposure and examined cardiac structure and function by echocardiography. Patients with abnormal liver tests, previous cardiovascular events, left ventricular ejection fraction
21 September 2016 In Cancer

Alcohol intake has been related to an increased risk of breast cancer (BC) while dietary fiber intake has been inversely associated to BC risk. A beneficial effect of fibers on ethanol carcinogenesis through their impact on estrogen levels is still controversial. We investigated the role of dietary fiber as a modifying factor of the association of alcohol and breast cancer using data from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC). This study included 334,850 women aged 35-70 years at baseline enrolled in the ten countries of the EPIC study and followed up for 11.0 years on average. Information on fiber and alcohol intake at baseline and average lifetime alcohol intake were calculated from country-specific dietary and lifestyle questionnaires. Hazard ratios (HR) of developing invasive breast cancer according to different levels of alcohol and fiber intake were computed. During 3,670,439 person-years, 11,576 incident breast cancer cases were diagnosed. For subjects with low intake of fiber (<18.5 g/day), the risk of BC per 10g/day of alcohol intake was 1.06 (1.03-1.08) while among subjects with high intake of fiber (>24.2 g/day) the risk of BC was 1.02 (0.99-1.05) (test for interaction p=0.011). This modulating effect was stronger for fiber from vegetables. Our results suggest that fiber intake may modulate the positive association of alcohol intake and BC.

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21 September 2016 In Cancer

BACKGROUND: Breast cancer aetiology may differ by estrogen receptor (ER) status. Associations of alcohol and folate intakes with risk of breast cancer defined by ER status were examined in pooled analyses of the primary data from 20 cohorts.

METHODS: During a maximum of 6-18 years of follow-up of 1 089 273 women, 21 624 ER+ and 5113 ER- breast cancers were identified. Study-specific multivariable relative risks (RRs) were calculated using Cox proportional hazards regression models and then combined using a random-effects model.

RESULTS: Alcohol consumption was positively associated with risk of ER+ and ER- breast cancer. The pooled multivariable RRs (95% confidence intervals) comparing >/= 30 g/d with 0 g/day of alcohol consumption were 1.35 (1.23-1.48) for ER+ and 1.28 (1.10-1.49) for ER- breast cancer (Ptrend /= 0.26). Dietary (from foods only) and total folate intakes were not associated with risk of overall, ER+ and ER- breast cancer; pooled multivariable RRs ranged from 0.98 to 1.02 comparing extreme quintiles. Following-up US studies through only the period before mandatory folic acid fortification did not change the results. The alcohol and folate associations did not vary by tumour subtypes defined by progesterone receptor status.

CONCLUSIONS: Alcohol consumption was positively associated with risk of both ER+ and ER- breast cancer, even among women with high folate intake. Folate intake was not associated with breast cancer risk.

02 August 2016 In General Health

The global strategy to reduce the harmful use of alcohol launched in 2010 by the World Health Organization includes, amongst several areas of recommended actions, providing consumer information about, and labelling, alcoholic beverages to indicate alcohol-related harm. Labelling requirements worldwide for alcoholic drinks are currently quite diverse and somewhat limited compared to labelling on food products and on tobacco. In this context, the current paper contributes to the academic and political debate on the inclusion of nutritional and health information on wine labelling, providing some insights into consumer interest in, and preferences for, such information in four core wine-producing and -consuming countries: Italy, France, Spain, and the United States of America. A rating-based conjoint analysis was performed in order to ascertain consumer preferences for different formats of additional information on wine labels, and a segmentation of the sample was performed to determine the existence of homogeneous groups of consumers in relation to the degrees of usefulness attached to the nutritional and health information on wine labels. Our results highlight the interest expressed by European and United States consumers for introducing nutrition and health information on wine labels. However, the results of conjoint analysis show some significant differences among stated preferences of the information delivery modes in different countries. In addition, segmentation analysis reveal the existence of significant differences between consumer groups with respect to their interest in receiving additional information on wine labels. These differences are not only linked to the geographic origin of the consumers, or to socio-demographic variables, but are also related to wine consumption habits, attitudes towards nutritional information, and the degree of involvement with wine. This heterogeneity of consumer preferences indicates a need for a careful consideration of wine labelling regulations and merits further investigation in order to identify labelling guidelines in terms of the message content and presentation method to be used.

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