[The "Valle Belbo Project" for the prevention of ischemic heart disease: study design and correlations between alcohol and cardiovascular risk factors].Ital Heart J Suppl 2003; 4(6):495-501IH
The "Valle Belbo Project" is a primary prevention study on ischemic heart disease, aiming at identifying cardiovascular risk factors. Detailed data about the amount and kind of alcohol beverages used were assessed, too. The aims of the present study were to evaluate the prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors, and the relationships between alcohol and these factors.
The study enrolled 3123 subjects, aged 20-65 years. Data about consumption of alcoholic drinks (amount and kind of beverages), smoking habits, physical activity during work, clinical and drug history were collected; height, weight, arterial blood pressure, fasting glycemia, and total cholesterol were also measured.
About 57% of the subjects consumed alcoholic drinks, mostly < 30 g/day (84%) and red wine only (80%). Prevalence of overweight/obesity, hypertension, hyperglycemia, hypercholesterolemia increased with higher amounts of alcohol consumed. A > 30 g/day alcohol use was independently associated with hypertension (odds ratio-OR 1.48, p = 0.03), hyperglycemia (OR 1.62, p = 0.02) overweight/obesity (OR 1.64, p = 0.003), and hypercholesterolemia (OR 1.69, p = 0.001) in a multiple logistic regression model, after multiple adjustments. A < 30 g/day red wine use was negatively correlated with hyperglycemia (OR 0.54, p < 0.0001) and overweight/obesity (OR 0.71, p = 0.002) with respect to consumption of higher or other kinds of alcoholic beverages in the same model.
Differently from heavy drinkers, < 30 g/day red wine drinkers are less frequently affected by overweight/obesity and hyperglycemia. Follow-up of these subjects may determine the role of alcohol effects in the incidence of ischemic heart disease.