Author: Gary Jackson

Hypertension: How just 1 alcohol drink a day may affect blood pressure

Hypertension occurs when the pressure of blood against the artery walls becomes higher than normal. There is evidence that reducing alcohol intake can help lower blood pressure in those suffering from hypertension and even prevent its development. To prevent various health complications, including high blood pressure, people should try to limit their alcohol consumption to one or two glasses infrequently. Having higher levels of catecholamines causes the body to excrete less fluid through urine.

A drink is 12 ounces (355 milliliters) of beer, 5 ounces (148 milliliters) of wine or 1.5 ounces (44 milliliters) of 80-proof distilled spirits. The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Connect with us on, Facebook, Twitter or by calling AHA-USA1. Use of this website and any information contained herein is governed by the Healthgrades User Agreement.

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The findings of this review support the current recommendations to avoid alcohol. The regular consumption of over 30 g/day of alcohol increases hypertension risk in linear proportion to the dosage and may independently cause cardiac damage in hypertensive patients. With moderate doses of alcohol, blood pressure (BP) went up for up to seven hours but normalized after that. However, alcohol consumption has been strongly linked to human diseases, including dementia, liver cirrhosis, and neurological conditions. A recent research paper examined whether drinking was related to hypertension, the root factor in morbidity and mortality caused by cardiovascular disease (CVD). We are moderately certain that medium‐dose alcohol decreased blood pressure and increased heart rate within six hours of consumption.

Discuss your alcohol intake with your healthcare provider and make lifestyle changes as recommended. However, if you want to partake in alcohol consumption, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2020–2025 and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) provide the following guidelines. According to a 2018 study and the World Health Organization, no amount of alcohol intake is safe, so any amount may be considered too much. It has also become clear over time that no amount of alcohol is considered safe for consumption, regardless of the type of alcohol. T​his research was a dose-response meta-analysis of seven different nonexperimental cohort studies.

What to know about alcohol and blood pressure

For example, alcohol can affect calcium levels, cortisol levels, and baroreceptor sensitivity, all of which can lead to increases in blood pressure. Hypertension is rising in prevalence due to the rising mean age of the population as well as due to the increased prevalence of poor dietary patterns and other lifestyle factors. Therefore, potential interventions could target weight loss, a sedentary lifestyle, appropriate sodium/potassium intake changes, smoking, and excessive alcohol intake. Hypertension leads to an increased risk of other health problems, including stroke, heart attack, and heart disease. T​here was a particular risk for bias in the studies that met the eligibility criteria, and there is still the potential risk for residual confounding. There are also a number of opportunities to expand on the research, including understanding more about how alcohol intake influences blood pressure among women.

  • A 2018 study, echoed by the World Health Organization (WHO), concluded that no amount of alcohol is safe for consumption, as alcohol leads to a loss of healthy life.
  • The unit of measurement for blood pressure is millimeters of mercury (mm Hg).
  • For low doses of alcohol, we found that one glass of alcohol had little to no effect on blood pressure and increased heart rate within six hours of drinking.
  • Cortisol is a hormone that regulates the body’s response to stress.