Alcohol Use and Health: The Global Burden of Disease Study

"Alcohol use accounted for 1.78 million (95% uncertainty interval [UI] 1.39โ€“2.27) deaths in 2020 and was the leading risk factor for mortality among males aged 15โ€“49 years (Bryazka D, unpublished). The relationship between moderate alcohol use and health is complex, as shown in multiple previous studies.1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Alcohol consumption at any level is associated with health loss from several diseases, including liver cirrhosis, breast cancer, and tuberculosis, as well as injuries.7, 8, 9, 10 At the same time, some studies have found that consumption of small amounts of alcohol lowers the risk of cardiovascular diseases and type 2 diabetes.11, 12, 13 As a corollary, the amount of alcohol that minimises health loss is likely to depend on the distribution of underlying causes of disease burden in a given population. Since this distribution varies widely by geography, age, sex, and time, the level of alcohol consumption associated with the lowest risk to health would depend on the age structure and disease composition of that population.14, 15, 16"


GBD 2020 Alcohol Collaborators (2022). Population-level risks of alcohol consumption by amount, geography, age, sex, and year: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2020. Lancet (London, England), 400(10347), 185โ€“235.