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Heavy drinking could increase the risk of "bad" bacteria



People who drink more than the recommended daily dose of alcohol can harbor an unhealthy mix of bacteria in their mouths, a new study suggests.

Researchers found that compared to non-drinkers, those who drank relatively high had less "good" bacteria in their mouths. They also harbored more "bad" bacteria – including beetles associated with gum disease, heart disease and cancer.

The study is one of the latest studies of what factors affect humans "microbiome" – the trillions of bacteria and other microbes that live naturally in the body. Many studies have found links between the structure of the microbiome of the gut and the risk of various diseases.

In general, studies have shown that the diversity in gut microbiota is even better.

Similarly, research suggests that an imbalance in the mouth's microbiome could increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease ̵

1; and possibly cancer of the head, neck, and digestive tract, as well as heart disease.

"We wanted to look at the question," What are the lifestyle factors that influence the oral microbiome? "Said senior researcher Jiyoung Ahn of NYU Langone Health of New York City.

Drinking habits were a natural factor to consider, Ahn says. Heavy drinking is associated with an increased risk of gum disease and certain cancers in the head and neck area – and there is evidence that alcohol alters the bacterial composition of the mouth.

Ahn's team analyzed mouthwash samples from 1,044 US adults who participated in two ongoing national cancer studies. About a quarter of these people said they were not drinkers. Another 59 percent were moderate drinkers and 15 percent were heavy drinkers.

"Heavy" was defined as more than the amount recommended by US health authorities: one drink a day for women and two a day for men [19659002Totaldrinkers-particular heavy drinkers – fewer lactobacillales, a type of "good" bacteria that are commonly used in probiotics.

Drinkers also typically contain higher levels of certain "bad" bacteria, such as Bacteroidales Actinomyces and Neisseria species

However, it is not clear what to do in English The findings do not prove that alcohol per se explains the differences between study participants, said Yiping Han, Professor of Dentistry and Microbiology at the University of California University of Dentistry Columbia University, New York City 002] Han explained that the oral microbiome could be affected by a variety of factors – from nutrition, brushing and dental care to income and other demographic characteristics.

Plus, Han said, it's unclear how many people in the heavy drinking group could have been alcohol dependent. And these individuals could be very different from non-drinkers and moderate drinkers.

Ahn said she and her team took into account a number of these factors. They considered age, race, smoking habits level of education and body weight, for example.

But Ahn said there may still be other differences between non-drinkers and heavy drinkers their team could not

"This is the first study that shows this relationship, and more research is needed," said Ahn.

One question is why alcohol would selectively cause an increase of some bad bugs and a dip in something good ones?

"We do not know," said Ahn. "Next we want to study the possible mechanisms."

Another question, she added, is whether heavy drinking promotes certain diseases by altering the bacterial composition of the oral cavity.

That is "theoretically" possible Han.

"But at this point we can not draw definitive conclusions," she said.

The bottom line is, Han says the standard advice is, "It's always wise for everyone to have good oral hygiene and a generally healthy lifestyle."

Regarding drinking, Ahn says the study more evidence that moderation is the key.

"We already know that heavy drinking is a risk factor for many diseases," she said. "The potential effect on the oral microbiome is another reason to avoid heavy drinking."

The results were published on April 23, in the journal Microbiome

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