Abstract Title:

[Homocysteine and alcohol consumption. An ambiguous relationship and a new paradox].

Abstract Source:

1: Presse Med. 2003 Feb 15;32(6):262-7.



Abstract Author(s):

Jean-Louis Schlienger


HOMOCYSTEINEMIA AND ITS VARIATIONS: The increase in plasma concentrations of homocysteine (Hcy) is a factor of cardiovascular risk. Its determinants are multifactorial, genetic and environmental. Out of the ingestion of dietary supplements containing vitamin B6, folates and B12, other substances such as coffee or alcohol contribute in the increase in Hcy. THE EFFECTS OF ALCOHOL: The alcohol-Hcy interaction is complex and ambiguous. Although chronic alcoholism clearly increases Hcy concentration, the effects of moderate and regular consumption of alcohol are debated in epidemiological studies. Following adjustment of various parameters, it is now admitted that alcohol moderately increases Hcy levels.This is paradoxical since the coronary protective effects of alcoholic beverages has been well established. THE PARTICULAR CASE OF BEER: However, a negative correlation between Hcy and alcoholic beverages has been described in some studies, more especially in beer-drinkers. The hypothesis of a reduction in Hcy induced by the beer contents has been described in an interventional study. The vitamins contained in beer, particularly B6, may well be at the origin of this beneficial effect.

Study Type : Review

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