One booze-free day a week reduces liver damage

28th January, 2015 by Melita Kiely

Abstaining from alcohol just one day a week could be enough to significantly reduce the chances of liver cirrhosis, a new study claims.

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One alcohol-free day a week could have a significant impact on the likelihood of developing liver disease

Previous research suggested that liver disease was the result of the quantity of alcohol consumed, not the frequency as suggested in the published Journal of Hepatology.

Researchers in Denmark studied a group of 56,000 adults aged between 50 and 60, from 1993 to 2011.

Over this time, 257 men and 85 women developed alcoholic cirrhosis, which kills around 170,000 people in Europe each year.

The results indicated that every day drinking was much more damaging to the liver than drinking just five or six days a week.

As a result, researchers concluded that having one drink-free day a week could decrease chances of developing cirrhosis in men.

While women showed similar trends, the team were not able to assert whether the same applied to women.

“For the first time, our study points to a risk difference between drinking daily and drinking five or six days a week in the general male population,” said Dr Gro Askgaard, of Copenhagen University Hospital and lead researcher.

Spirits and beer were found to have higher risks of cirrhosis compared to wine.

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