If you are a woman that is 70-81 years old, there's good news: An alcoholic drink a day appears to helps reduce the risk of cognitive impairment.
Researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard School of Public Health in Boston reviewed data from 12,480 women aged 70 to 81 who
participated in the Nurses' Health Study between 1980 and 1998. The findings indicate that a drink of alcohol a day reduces the risk of cognitive
An alcoholic drink a day appears to help keep cognitive decline away.
Researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard School of Public Health in Boston made the discovery by analyzing data from the large
Nurses' Health Study.
They found that older women who consumed one drink per day had less cognitive impairment than nondrinkers. Moderate alcohol consumption was linked to
a 20% reduced risk of cognitive impairment.
"Much evidence has demonstrated the heart benefits of light alcohol drinking, but less research has focused on cognitive functioning," says Francine
Grodstein, the study's senior author. "While we all continue to recommend exercising caution when consuming any type of alcohol, our study suggests
that moderate consumption might provide older women some cognitive benefits."
No benefit to more booze
Grodstein and colleagues reviewed data from 12,480 women aged 70 to 81 who participated in the Nurses' Health Study.
Alcohol consumption data was collected as part of food-frequency questionnaires issued every few years between 1980 and 1998. Moderate consumption of
beer, wine and liquor was defined as less than 15 grams per day.
From 1995 to 2002, the women participated in telephone-based cognitive surveys. Those who were classified as moderate drinkers had better mean
cognitive scores than nondrinkers.
One drink appears to be just right for the protective effect, as there was no difference between nondrinkers and those who consumed more than one
drink per day. Type of alcohol appeared to make no substantial difference.
While the results provide further evidence for the health benefits of moderate alcohol consumption, Grodstein says that more research is needed to
better understand the links between alcohol and cognitive function.
The research is reported in the New England Journal of Medicine (read abstract).
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An alcoholic drink a day appears to be good for your health. Especially if you are a woman aged 70 to 81 and concerned about cognitive impairment
later in life. Moderate alcohol consumption can be linked to a 20% reduced risk of cognitive impairment. Though, there appears to be no benefit to
more than a drink a day.
I'm not a woman aged 70-81, but I will still manage to get that healthy alcohol into my system everyday. Not to mention the benefits to our hearts,
[edit on 20-1-2005 by poonchang]