The Korea-based study was comprised of twenty healthy males with no history of eye disease. Ten men served as subjects, while the others served as controls for the study. The subjects were instructed to drink 0.75 grams of alcohol (that’s about two beers) over a two hour period. A few hours later, alcohol was detected in the tears of all ten subjects.
Though by early morning the traces of alcohol were seemingly gone, findings indicated that the booze induced tear hyperosmolarity and a significantly shortened tear break up time in all of the men who drank it. In many cases, both hyperosmolarity and shortened tear break-up time can result in dry eyes.
The evidence found during this study suggests that the effects of even a small amount of alcohol can increase and exacerbate symptoms in dry eye patients. Researchers have been paying close attention to the effects our food and drink consumption have on dry eye disease, only recently a different study linked caffeine to dry eye improvements and another one suggested that foods with high levels of Vitamin A can also have a soothing effect on symptoms. (So, even if you have to cut down on beers and mojitos, feel free to have a cup of coffee and some sweet potato fries on the side!)
Remember to drink a sufficient amount of water (8-10 glasses a day) and avoid alcohol when dealing with dry eye symptoms.
Do you find that drinking alcohol affects your dry eye issues? Do you think alcohol could be related to your flare-ups? Leave a comment and let us know!