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No Alcohol Safe to Drink: Global Study Confirms

LONDON – In parallel with Islamic Shari`ah, which forbids drinking alcohol, a large new global study published in the Lancet has confirmed that there is no safe level of alcohol consumption, BBC reported.

“Previous studies have found a protective effect of alcohol on some cardiovascular conditions, but we found that the combined health risks associated with alcohol increase with any amount of alcohol,” confirmed the lead author of the study Dr. Max Griswold, at the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), University of Washington, the US.

The Global Burden of Disease study looked at levels of alcohol use and its health effects in 195 countries between 1990 and 2016.

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Analyzing data from 15 to 95-year-olds, the researchers compared people who didn’t drink at all with those who had one alcoholic drink a day.

They found that out of 100,000 non-drinkers, 914 would develop an alcohol-related health problem such as cancer or suffer an injury. But an extra four people would be affected if they had one alcoholic drink a day.

For people who had two alcoholic drinks a day, 63 more developed a condition within a year and for those who consumed five drinks every day, there was an increase of 338 people, who developed a health problem.

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Another author of the study, Prof Sonia Saxena, said the study was the most important study ever conducted on the subject.

“Its findings go further than others by considering a number of factors including alcohol sales, self-reported data on the amount of alcohol drank, abstinence, tourism data and the levels of illicit trade and home brewing,” she explained.

Out of the 195 countries surveyed, the drinking levels were far higher generally among men than women, with Romanian men drinking more than eight drinks daily.

Around the world, one in three people are thought to drink alcohol,  and it’s linked to nearly a tenth of all deaths in those aged 15 to 49.

1,439 Years Ago

In Islam, consumption of any intoxicants, specifically alcoholic beverages, is entirely forbidden in the Holy Qur’an through several separate verses revealed at different times over a period of years, as well as the Sunnah of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him.

Substances which are intoxicants aren’t prohibited as such, although their consumption is. For example, alcohol can be used as a disinfectant or for cleaning, but not as a beverage.

A Prophetic hadith states that: “Every intoxicant is khamr, and every khamr is forbidden.” Khamr here is a word used in reference to alcoholic beverages and intoxicants.

Islamic jurisprudence specifies which foods are lawful or not. This is derived from commandments found in the Qur’an and Prophetic Sunnah.

Extensions of these rulings are issued, as fatwas by Islamic scholars who aren’t always widely held to be authoritative.

In fact, Shari`ah doesn’t consider a person to be guilty of sin in a situation where the lack of any alternative creates an undesired necessity to consume that which is otherwise unlawful.