Even light alcohol drinking can derail glucose control in men
Even at low levels, alcohol consumption may contribute to glucose intolerance and an impaired insulin secretion in lean or non-obese men, reports a new Japan study.
Researchers conducted a cross-sectional analysis on 402 non-diabetic men aged ≥40 years. Blood samples were collected for the measurement of fasting plasma glucose (FPG), insulin, triglycerides, and cholesterols, while the homeostasis model assessment was used to assess insulin secretion capacity (HOMA-B). A self-administered diet history questionnaire was used to determine alcohol consumption.
Most of the participants were of normal body mass index (BMI; <25 kg/m2; n=277). In this subgroup, 22.7 percent were non-drinkers, 39.4 percent were light-to-moderate drinkers, and 37.9 percent were intensive drinkers.
FPG and HOMA-B values were slightly but significantly worse in light-to-moderate drinkers than in non-drinkers among non-obese participants. This remained true even after controlling for potential confounders, such as age, BMI, medications, regular exercise, current smoking, and a family history of diabetes (FPG: 5.20±0.05 vs 4.92±0.07 mmol/L; p<0.01; HOMA-B: 4.86±4.2 vs 66.0±4.0; p<0.05).
Notably, among participants who had BMI ≥25 kg/m2 (n=125), only intensive drinkers showed significantly elevated FPG and HOMA-B levels. In this subgroup, light-to-moderate drinkers had lower glycated haemoglobin (5.73±0.05 percent vs 5.89±0.06 percent; p<0.05) than non-drinkers.
Multivariate logistic regression analysis confirmed that light-to-moderate alcohol consumption was associated with impaired FPG (odds ratio [OR], 2.598, 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 1.019–6.622) and abnormally low HOMA-B (OR, 2.318, 95 percent CI, 1.002–5.332) relative to non-drinkers in the BMI <25 kg/m2 group.
The same was true for intensive alcohol intake (FPG: OR, 2.907, 95 percent CI, 1.138–7.426; HOMA-B: OR, 2.712, 95 percent CI, 1.016–6.397).