Addiction to alcohol is not good for health. And now a new study has found heavy alcohol consumption can be harmful for poverty-stricken people putting them at a greater risk of illness or death.
According to the study, there is relation between socio-economic status and the harm caused by drinking excess of alcohol.
Researchers led by University of Glasgow in the UK found that though excessive consumption of alcohol was related to harm in all groups of people, it was disproportionately harmful for poor section of society.
When compared with the light drinkers who lived in advantaged areas, heavy drinkers were at about seven times increased risk of alcohol harms. While people heavy drinkers who lived in the deprived areas were at eleven-fold increased risk.
“Our study finds that the poorest in society are at greater risk of alcohol's harmful impacts on health, but this is not because they are drinking more or more often binge drinking," said Vittal Katikireddi, from University of Glasgow.
"Experiencing poverty may impact on health, not only through leading an unhealthy lifestyle but also as a direct consequence of poor material circumstances and psychosocial stresses," said Katikireddi.
"Poverty may therefore reduce resilience to disease, predisposing people to greater health harms of alcohol," he said.
"Heavier drinking is associated with greater alcohol- related harm in all individuals. However, our study suggests that the harm is greater in those living in poorer areas or who have a lower income, fewer qualifications, or a manual occupation," said Elise Whitley from University of Glasgow.
The researchers linked different sets of data to bring together information from the Scottish Health Surveys with electronic health records of more than 50,000 people.
The study implies that when the other factors are taken into account, including smoking, and obesity, living in deprived areas was consistently related with higher alcohol-related harms.