Does Beer And/or Alcohol Affect Cholesterol Levels?


Asked by maria barton

Does Beer And/or Alcohol Affect Cholesterol Levels?

I have high cholesterol and would rather not give up alcohol, but my doctor said I should. Does it really affect cholesterol?


Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Alcohol especially impacts your triglycerides. If you are not familiar with triglycerides, your total cholesterol number is made up of three things - LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, and triglycerides. Triglycerides are a type of fat and alcohol causes the liver to release more triglycerides into circulation.

So, if you have high triglycerides I recommend strictly limiting alcohol, if your triglycerides are fine, but you have high cholesterol, drink in moderation (no more than 1 drink/day for women, 2 drinks/day for men; 1 drink = 12 oz beer, 4 oz wine, 1 ½ ounce hard liquor).

Triglycerides: Why They Matter and How to Lower Them

Your Checklist to Lower Cholesterol

You should know: The answer above provides general health information that is not intended to replace medical advice or treatment recommendations from a qualified healthcare professional.