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Bacchus is back! Moderate wine worship could help kidneys

By Ben Bouckley+

29-Apr-2014
Last updated on 29-Apr-2014 at 11:29 GMT

The Roman god of wine Dionysus or Bacchus (Photo: Derek Key/Flickr)
The Roman god of wine Dionysus or Bacchus (Photo: Derek Key/Flickr)

Moderate wine consumption could help keep the kidneys healthy and may protect the heart in patients with kidney disease, according to University of Colorado researchers.

Presenting a poster paper at the National Kidney Foundation’s 2014 Spring Clinical Meetings in Gaylord, Texas, between March 25-29, Tapan Mehta and colleagues assessed data on 5,852 people (1,031 with chronic kidney disease, CKD) taken from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

Mehta et al. found that those who drank less than one glass of wine a day had a 37% lower prevalence of kidney disease than those who drank no wine.

“This remained significant after adjusting for demographics, waist circumference, diabetes, hypertension, HDL-cholesterol and triglycerides.”

Consistent with previous studies

Subjects who had chronic kidney disease who drank less than a glass of wine daily were 29% less likely to have cardiovascular disease (CVD) than non-wine drinkers, after adjusting for covariates.

Thomas Manley, director of scientific activities, National Kidney Foundation, said: “Similar to previous studies showing that moderate wine consumption appears to impart some health benefit by lowering the risk of heart disease and diabetes, this study suggests an association between moderate wine consumption (< 1 glass/day) and lower chronic rates of chronic kidney disease.”

But Manley said that moderation was the key for kidney patients in regard to alcohol, and warned excess consumption “has definitely shown to have negative effects on kidney function.

“Alcohol can also worsen hypertension, a major cause of chronic kidney disease. So those with poorly controlled hypertension should definitely limit the amount of alcohol they consume,” he added.

Nutritional content of drinks also crucial

Manley said it was also important to consider the nutritional content of alcoholic drinks to ensure they comply with a proper renal diet.

“These data suggest that wine intake is associated with reduced odds of CKS, and with reduced odds of CVD in individuals with CKD,” Mehta et al. wrote.

“Further studies are needed to understand the mechanisms underlying this association, particularly in individuals with CKD,” the scientists added.

Title: ‘Prevalence of Kidney Disease According to Wine Intake in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (2003-2006).

Authors: Mehta, T., Mettler, P., McFann, K., Jalal, D.

Source: Poster presentation , Spring 2014 Clinical Meetings, National Kidney Foundation

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