Study: Drinking alcohol continuously makes you stupid



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New study: too much alcohol makes you stupid - cognitive abilities decrease
16.01.2014

There are a number of studies that have looked into the effects of alcohol consumption on human brain performance in the past. Almost everyone comes to the conclusion that too much alcohol causes the brain to age faster and leads to a reduction in cognitive abilities.

This is also the result of a current study by researchers from Great Britain and the USA. For the study, the drinking behavior of a total of 5054 men and 2099 women with an average age of 56 years was examined more closely. The scientists focused on men who drink more than 36 grams of alcohol; which corresponds to about 0.75 liters of beer or 0.4 liters of wine. They published their results in the journal "Neurlogy".

The researchers found that their cognitive abilities declined one and a half to six years faster than in a comparison group of men who abstained or drank only moderately. In general, cognitive skills are understood to mean any activity that is used to process knowledge and that is processed on the basis of sensory stimuli. For this purpose, cognitive abilities include all perceptions on an intellectual and intellectual basis, as a result of which new memory contents are produced.

The results of the study also showed that there is no difference in the memory performance of non-drinkers and men who consumed less than 20 grams of alcohol. According to study author Séverine Sabia from University College in London, excessive alcohol consumption leads to a faster decrease in brain performance in men. But whoever thinks that only the male brain is affected is wrong. There is also a decline in cognitive function in women. The researchers calculated an average of 2.4 years. Due to other assessment bases, the result is not classified by the scientists as significant enough.

In the long run, consuming too much alcohol can also harm the body. Possible consequences of excessive and long-term alcohol consumption can cause liver diseases such as, (hepatitis) or even liver cirrhosis.

Heavy alcohol consumption in adolescence leads to similar results But it is not only middle-aged people who have to accept losses. A larger study from 2010, which looked at excessive alcohol consumption in adolescence, also showed that too much alcohol leads to changes in brain structure. In this study, the results of which were published in the journal Science Daily, the adolescents underwent various psychological tests that assessed their cognitive skills. At that time, it was found that adolescents with greatly increased alcohol consumption performed significantly worse in the tests. The subjects were given attention and executive functions, including complex mental functions such as planning, problem solving and action control, i.e. also conscious controls, which are summarized as cognitive functions. (fr)

Image: ratzfatz / pixelio.de

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