Avoiding Alcohol Helps the Heart Beat Better
By Robert Preidt
The longer you refrain from drinking, the lower your risk of a common heart rhythm disorder.
That's the message of a new long-range study examining alcohol use and atrial fibrillation, or Afib. This is when electrical impulses in the upper chambers of the heart are chaotic and cause an irregular heartbeat, which increases the risk of blood clots that can cause stroke or heart attacks.
One in four adults older than 40 is at risk for Afib, and nearly 6 million people in the United States could have the condition by 2050.
But the researchers from the University of California, San Francisco found that every decade of non-drinking decreased the risk of Afib by 20 percent, regardless of the type of alcohol.