A global state of the art study has just concluded that no amount of alcohol containing drinks, be it liquor, wine or beer is safe for overall health and alcohol is a leading risk factor for disease and premature death.

The health study, published on Thursday 23 August 2018 in the British medical journal The Lancet, was funded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with the title “Alcohol use and burden for 195 countries and territories, 1990–2016: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2016”.

The study reported that during the year 2016, alcohol was associated with 2.8 million deaths accounting for one in 10 deaths worldwide.

Muslim countries had the lowest percentage of alcohol consumption and presumably alcohol-related burden of disease. While India and China with large Muslim populations had a very low rate of alcohol consumption amongst females, it was significantly high amongst males, the study pointed out.

Professor Emmanuela Gakidou, one of the main authors from the University of Washington said that even a small amount of alcohol intake was harmful negating any beneficial effects of minimal alcohol consumption.

The study “found that the risk of all-cause mortality, and of cancers specifically, rises with increasing levels of consumption, and the level of consumption that minimises health loss is zero” and recommended that “these results suggest that alcohol control policies might need to be revised worldwide, refocusing on efforts to lower overall population-level consumption,” of alcoholic drinks.