Aim: To determine the effects of alcohol consumption and smoking on the onset of hypertension in a long-term longitudinal study.
Methods: 7511 non-hypertensive male workers were enrolled. This cohort study was performed over an 8-year period using the results of the annual workers-health screening. The end-point was defined as systolic blood pressure ≥ 140 mmHg, diastolic blood pressure ≥ 90 mmHg, or use of antihypertensive drugs. For alcohol consumption, weekly alcohol intake (g ethanol/week) was estimated (1 "gou" = 22 g ethanol). Annual survey data were analyzed by pooled logistic regression that included alcohol consumption, smoking, age, body mass index, job schedule types, habitual exercise, and blood test measurements into the statistical model.
Results: A significant positive dose-response relationship between alcohol consumption and onset of hypertension was observed, with synergistic health effects present. Compared with abstainers and nonsmokers, the adjusted odds ratios (95% confidence interval) for the onset of hypertension were: 1.51 (1.27-1.79) for 154 g ethanol/week and nonsmokers, and 1.81 (1.54-2.11) for 154 g ethanol/week and smokers. An interaction between alcohol and smoking was confirmed.
Conclusions: This study provided information useful to the prevention of hypertension. By reducing alcohol consumption and smoking simultaneously, the risk of hypertension may be considerably lowered.
Keywords: alcohol consumption; hypertension; long-term longitudinal study; pooled logistic regression analysis; smoking; workers’ cohort.