Moderate Drinkers Outlive Nondrinkers
The debate over alcohol being bad for you may come to an end as a new study surfaces suggesting that people who are moderate drinkers outlive nondrinkers.
The study completed by a team at the University of Texas at Austin followed the mortality rate of 1,824 people between the ages of 55 and 65 over a 20 year period.
The researchers found that 60% of those classified as heavy drinkers died over the course of the two decade study while 69% of those classified as non-drinkers died during that time.
Study shows moderate drinkers live longer
The study found both groups incurred a significantly higher death rate than moderate drinkers (for the purpose of the study, those who consumed three drinks or less per day), of whom only 41% died during the study.
Don’t rush to the liquor store thinking you can drink to good health though since moderate drinkers outlive nondrinkers. The authors of the study noted that although it may increase life expectancy, heavy drinking is a significant cause of many health problems including cirrhosis, certain kinds of cancer, and brain damage.
Although the scientists did not share any reasons behind their findings, they speculated that the mortality rate of heavy drinkers is able to surpass that of non drinkers despite these risks because of the added social benefits of drinking. Those who consume alcohol are more likely to take part in social interactions which have been proven to be an important factor in maintaining health and increasing longevity. They also speculated that abstainers tend to come from lower socioeconomic classes as well as they have other stressors that might contribute to their decreased life spans.
The authors warned against taking their findings to mean significant alcohol consumption and binge drinking are a good idea, since drinking can be addictive and, if done excessively, can impair the memory as well as motor and reasoning skills.