coulson-alcoholconsumption-2013.pdf (316.91 kB)
Download file

Alcohol consumption and body composition in a population-based sample of elderly Australian men

Download (316.91 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 2013-01-01, 00:00 authored by Carolyn Coulson, Lana WilliamsLana Williams, Sharon Brennan-OlsenSharon Brennan-Olsen, Michael BerkMichael Berk, Mark Kotowicz, D Lubman, Julie PascoJulie Pasco
Background: Alcohol is calorie dense, and impacts activity, appetite and lipid processing. The aim of this study was to therefore investigate the association between alcohol consumption and components of body composition including bone, fat and lean tissue.

Methods: Participants were recruited from a randomly selected, population-based sample of 534 men aged 65 years and older enrolled in the Geelong Osteoporosis Study. Alcohol intake was ascertained using a food frequency questionnaire and the sample categorised as nondrinkers or alcohol users who consumed B2, 3–4 or C5 standard drinks on a usual drinking day. Bone mineral density (BMD), lean body mass and body fat mass were measured using dual energy X-ray absorptiometry; overall adiposity (%body fat), central adiposity (%truncal fat) and body mass index (BMI) were calculated. Bone quality was determined by quantitative heel ultrasound (QUS).

Results: There were 90 current non-drinkers (16.9 %), 266 (49.8 %) consumed 1–2 drinks/day, 104 (19.5 %) 3–4 drinks/day and 74 (13.8 %) C5 drinks/day. Those consuming C5 drinks/day had greater BMI (?4.8 %), fat mass index (?20.1 %), waist circumference (?5.0 %), %body fat (?15.2 %) and proportion of trunk fat (?5.3 %) and lower lean mass (-5.0 %) than non-drinkers after adjustment for demographic and lifestyle factors. Furthermore, they were more likely to be obese than non-drinkers according to criteria based on BMI (OR = 2.83, 95 %CI 1.10–7.29) or waist circumference (OR = 3.36, 95 %CI 1.32–8.54). There was an inverse relationship between alcohol consumption and QUS parameters and BMD at the mid forearm site; no differences were detected for BMD at other skeletal sites.

Conclusion: Higher alcohol intake was associated with greater total and central adiposity and reduced bone quality.



Aging clinical and experimental research






183 - 192


Springer International Publishing


Cham, Switzerland





Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal