Compared with patients who drink twice per week (reference group), patients who drink once per week showed the lowest risk [hazard ratio (HR) 0.933, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.916–0.950] and those who drink everyday had the highest risk for new-onset AF (HR 1.412, 95% CI 1.373–1.453), respectively.
However, the amount of alcohol intake per drinking session did not present any clear association with new-onset AF. Regardless of whether weekly alcohol intake exceeded 210 g, the frequency of drinking was significantly associated with the risk of new-onset AF. In contrast, when patients were stratified by weekly alcohol intake (210 g per week), those who drink large amounts of alcohol per drinking session showed a lower risk of new-onset AF.
Frequent drinking and amount of alcohol consumption per week were significant risk factors for new-onset AF, whereas the amount of alcohol consumed per each drinking session was not an independent risk factor. Avoiding the habit of consuming a low but frequent amount of alcohol might therefore be important to prevent AF.