According to the conclusions of a study carried out by researchers from the School of Public Health of the University of Shandong (China), in which the data of 333,247 participants obtained through the surveys of the National Health Interviews carried out have been analyzed from 1997 to 2009, a glass of red wine or a beer a day can help us live longer .
Alcohol and life expectancy
The participants were divided into six groups based on their consumption patterns:
- Infrequent drinkers
- Former drinkers
- Somewhat frequent drinkers (less than three drinks per week)
- Moderate drinkers (more than three drinks per week and less than 14 for men or 7 for women)
- Heavy drinkers (more than 14 drinks a week for men or 7 a week for women).
The results determined that light or moderate alcohol consumption could have "protective" effects on health and reduce the risk of dying young. However, it should be noted that the data analyzed have to do with surveys about the frequency and consumption of alcohol.
During the years of the study, 34,754 participants died; 8,947 deaths were specific to cardiovascular disease, and 8,427 were caused by cancer. Bo Xi , leader of the work, explains his conclusions as follows:
Our research shows that light to moderate drinking can have some protective effects against cardiovascular disease. There is a fine balance between the beneficial and harmful effects of alcohol consumption, which must be emphasized in both consumers and patients.
Men who drank heavily (classified as heavy drinkers) had a 25% increased risk of all-cause mortality and a 67% increase in cancer mortality. Not so in women, among whom there was no increase to take into account. Moderate alcohol consumption was associated with a 13% and 25% lower risk of mortality from all causes (men and women respectively), and a 21% and 34% decrease in the risk of death from cardiovascular diseases, in men and women respectively. Rather frequent drinkers obtained similar percentages .
However, as has been qualified, these are surveys, and drinking alcohol should be discouraged or taken very moderately .