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UCSF Asian Health Institute
University of California San Francisco
Phone: 415-885-3678


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Community Health Education

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April 16, 2014: The New Face of Alcohol in Asia

Date: April 16, 2014
Time: 5 pm – 6:30 pm
Location: 1600 Divisadero Street (between Post and Sutter St.), Herbst Hall, 2nd Floor
Fee: Free
Speaker: Laura Schmidt, MD

Beers, wines, and liquors – beverages that are favorites for the rich as well as for the poor, together with tobacco, cause major health problems. Unlike tobacco which has a clear ban from the healthcare arena, alcohol is ambiguous, with good and bad qualities, making it next to impossible to ban. Some wines, especially red wines in moderation, are approved by the American Heart Association to promote heart health. For many Asians, drinking wine also promote social image – the “in” thing to do in social circles, both professional and personal. So what is the harm? What is the new face of alcohol in Asia and in Asian communities?

Why is alcohol an important topic in relationship to Asia and Asians? Come to the lecture and Professor Laura Schmidt will tell you why.

Dr. Schmidt, a UCSF medical sociologist, works in the macro environment to study the health of whole societies. She looks at the big picture, so to speak, and has spent more than 20 years studying the best possible ways to address alcohol problems - what works and what doesn't - to protect people from harm. She agrees with Dr. Robert Lustig about the “many connections between the metabolism of fructose (sugar) and ethanol (alcohol) . . . on metabolic functioning, liver damage and the obesity epidemic”. After all, alcohol is only a distillation of sugar.

This lecture is part of the bilingual (English/Cantonese) “X-Sugar Pandemic Alert" community lecture series. It is free of charge and brings together faculty experts from UCSF to raise our awareness on how excess sugar consumption can compromise our health and cause many chronic health issues, with diabetes and heart disease in the lead.

RSVP: (415) 885-3678