Do you like having a drink at the end of the day? Or perhaps a glass of wine with dinner is more your speed?
Either way, if you enjoy having a drink from time to time I have good news.
Researchers say if you’re a senior your “guilty pleasure” could come with a couple of welcome side effects.
If you drink in moderation, it may be helping you live longer. Plus it could make that extra time here even better by preserving your precious memories.
Moderate drinking may have health benefits
In fact, researchers say, a daily drink may help you avoid some of the most devastating diseases of aging.
We already knew that drinking resveratrol-rich red wine has some potential heart benefits. Research has linked the grapeseed extract to healthy circulation, cholesterol levels and blood pressure.
And studies have found that the natural anti-inflammatory might also help us manage our weight.
Plus other studies have linked moderate drinking with living longer.
But now researchers say they’ve found that older folks who enjoy a few drinks a week also have a better chance of avoiding dementia.
Up to a drink a day could slash signs of dementia
The researchers followed a group of over 1,300 adults for nearly thirty years.
All of the volunteers called the same middle to upper class suburb home. They all had at least some college under their belt. And they all were white and living similar lifestyles.
In other words they had a lot in common, which made them a good group to study.
Every four years the volunteers had their memory and cognitive skills put to the test. And the moderate drinkers came out on top, according to the study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.1
The folks who were 85 and older who reported having a drink five to seven days a week were TWICE as likely to have zero signs of dementia as the non-drinkers were.
Bottoms up isn’t the best choice for everyone
Now this isn’t a license to turn bottoms up into a lifestyle, of course. And this wasn’t a cause and effect study. So we can’t say for sure that there weren’t other factors involved that slashed signs of dementia.
But it does mean those of us that enjoy a tipple from time to time should stop feeling guilty. Because we could be getting some serious benefits.
According to the experts, moderate drinking for women of any age, and guys over 65, means up to one drink a day. And for guys under 65 it’s up to two drinks a day.
But keep in mind that alcohol is not a good idea for everyone.
Certain medical conditions make drinking a bad idea. And alcohol can interfere with some medications.
So be sure to check with your doctor about whether or not an occasional drink is okay for you. You might be surprised at his answer. Mine gave me the thumbs up.
“Alcohol Intake and Cognitively Healthy Longevity in Community-Dwelling Adults: The Rancho Bernardo Study,” Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, vol. 59, no. 3, pp. 803-814, 2017