The impact of diabetes on the association between alcohol intake and the risk of end-stage kidney disease in the Singapore Chinese Health Study.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


The relationship between alcohol intake and end-stage kidney disease (ESKD) risk is controversial. Moreover, while evidence has shown that the relationship between alcohol and atherosclerosis may be modified by diabetes, whether this applies to ESKD is unknown.


We examined these associations in the Singapore Chinese Health Study, a prospective cohort of 63 257 adults aged 45 to 74 years. Information on alcohol intake, diet, lifestyle factors, and medical history was collected at recruitment. We identified 1217 ESKD cases via linkage with the Singapore Renal Registry after a mean follow-up of 17.5 years. Cox regression models were used to estimate hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% CI of ESKD.


Among the participants without diabetes at baseline, monthly to weekly drinking was associated with a decreased risk of ESKD (HR 0.69; 95% CI, 0.54-0.87) compared to nondrinkers. In contrast, this association was attenuated and not significant among those with diabetes (HR 0.82; 95% CI, 0.58-1.16; Pinteraction = .19). Comparatively, alcohol intake of ≥2 drinks per day was significantly associated with an increased risk of ESKD compared to nondrinkers among those with diabetes (HR 2.00; 95% CI, 1.14-3.53) but not among those without diabetes (HR 0.91; 95% CI, 0.53-1.56; Pinteraction = .01). The risk of ESKD among those with diabetes and who also consumed ≥2 drinks per day was increased by nearly 12-fold compared to nondrinkers without diabetes (HR 11.6; 95% CI, 6.73-19.9).


Low-dose drinking is associated with a reduced risk of ESKD among individuals without diabetes. However, joint exposure to heavy drinking and diabetes is associated with a substantially higher risk of ESKD.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Geng, T-T; Jafar, TH; Yuan, J-M; Koh, W-P

Published Date

  • August 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 12 / 8

Start / End Page

  • 583 - 593

PubMed ID

  • 32142209

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1753-0407

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1753-0393

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1111/1753-0407.13034


  • eng