THE RISKS OF ALCOHOL consumption have been underestimated, especially for people under the age of 50.
A study published Thursday in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs found that prior studies on the consumption of alcohol could have yielded incorrect results because a majority of participants studied were older than 50, which eliminates people who have already died from alcohol consumption.
According to the study, more than 40 percent of deaths from alcohol occur before 50 years old, which “suggests that most current studies underestimate alcohol-related risk compared with what would be observed across the full age spectrum.”Additionally, researchers found that previous studies enroll people who “are not representative of all persons who begin to drink alcohol.”
Dr. Timothy Naimi, lead author, said in a press release that people older than 50 who are enrolled in studies, “are ‘survivors’ of their alcohol consumption who [initially] might have been healthier or have had safer drinking patterns.”
Analyzing data from 2006 to 2010, researchers discovered that age played a large part in deaths by alcohol consumption. About 36 percent of deaths caused by alcohol were among people aged 20 to 49.