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Binge Drinking May Lead To Osteoporosis

Tue, 13 Jul 2010 06:47:2

David Goodhue - AHN News Reporter

Baltimore, MD, United States (AHN) - Binge drinking as a teen could put someone at risk of osteoporosis as an adult, according to a new study.

Loyola University researchers said heavy drinking as a teen could have long-lasting disruptions in hundreds of genes involving bone formation.

The researchers made the discovery using rats and said that the findings don't necessarily translate to humans. But they said in a statement that their research was strong enough to suggest a possible link between heavy drinking and the bone-loss disease.

The researchers defined binge drinking as having at least four alcoholic drinks on one occasion for a woman and at least five for a man. Binge drinking usually begins around 13 and peaks between 18 and 22, according to the researchers.

The researchers cited statistics by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration that state 36 percent of youths ages 18 to 20 reported at least one binge-drinking episode during the past 30 days.

Bone loss happens as people age. The researchers said that anything that inhibits bone formation during the formative years increases the risk of osteoporosis and fractures later in life.

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