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What is your excuse? Research shows that living in colder, darker climate increases the amount of alcohol you drink

New American research has found evidence to support the long-standing belief that those living in parts of the world where…

New American research has found evidence to support the long-standing belief that those living in parts of the world where the days are shorter and colder drink more alcohol, potentially putting people at higher risk of liver disease.

Carried researched by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh Division of Gastroenterology, the new study aimed at investigating whether living in colder, darker climate causes people to consume more alcohol and what effect it may have on the risk of alcohol choir.

The researchers gathered information about 193 sovereign countries as well as 50 states and 3,144 counties in the United States using data from the World Health Organization, the World Meteorological Organization and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.
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They then looked at the relationships between climate factors such as average temperature and sunlight hours, alcohol consumption (measured as total alcohol intake per capita), the percentage of the population who drink alcohol and how much binge-drinking.
The results, published online in the journal Hepatology, showed that when the temperature and the number of daylight hours fell, alcohol consumption increased.

The researchers also found evidence that colder, darker days also contribute to binge drinking and a higher alcoholic disease, one of the main causes of death among those with long-term excessive alcohol use. The same results were found both when comparing countries around the world and comparing counties in the United States.

“It’s something everyone has assumed for decades, but nobody has scientifically shown it. Why do people in Russia drink so much? Why in Wisconsin? Everybody assumes it’s because it’s cold, says senior writer Ramon Bataller, MD , Ph.D. “But we could not find a single paper climatic climate for alcohol intake or alcohol cirrhosis. This is the first study that systematically shows that throughout the world and in America, in colder areas and areas with less sun, you have more drinking and more alcoholic cirrhosis. “

The team noted that they also took into account other factors that could affect how much a population drinks, for example, most Arab populations living in hot desert areas with a large amount of sunlight hours would refrain from alcohol.

The researchers also controlled for health factors that can exacerbate the effects of alcohol on the liver, such as viral hepatitis, obesity and smoking.

“It’s important to highlight the many confusing factors,” said lead author Meritxell Ventura-Cots, Ph.D. tried to check for as many as we could. For example, we tried to check for religion and how it affects alcohol habits. “

They explained that in colder climates they can drink because alcohol is a vasodilator, which means it increases the flow of warm blood to the skin, which is full of temperature sensors, and it can also increase the sense of heat. Drinking is also linked to depression, which tends to be worse during the winter months and when there is less sunlight.

| Edited by: Shantanu David

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