European Journal of Epidemiology

, Volume 23, Issue 2, pp 105–108

The cardioprotective effects of alcohol consumption: does cardiac autonomic function play a role?



Moderate alcohol consumption has cardioprotective properties and several mechanisms have been proposed. In over 4,000 men and women from the Whitehall II study, mean heart rate variability levels were lowest among those consuming the most alcohol per week, but in multivariate analyses no statistical associations were found. The cardiac autonomic nervous system is unlikely to explain much of the cardioprotective properties of alcohol.


Alcohol drinking Coronary disease Autonomic nervous system Cohort studies 



coronary heart disease


low frequency


high frequency


heart rate variability


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Epidemiology and Public HealthUniversity College LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.Cardiac and Vascular SciencesSt George’s, University of LondonLondonUK

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