Moderate Alcohol Intake and Health Benefits: Moderate intake of alcohol has several beneficial effects on health (and most of us are aware of it). The health benefits are for moderate drinking only and these health benefits are not seen among heavy drinkers and non-drinkers or abstainers. If you want to enjoy the health benefits of alcohol, you must drink in moderation.
Alcohol has been in use as medicine for centuries. At present also there are several medicinal preparations that contain alcohol. The health benefits of alcohol have been mentioned several times even in the Bible (Old Testament and New Testament). There are several well-documented studies, which clearly demonstrate the health benefits of moderate alcohol consumption.
We all are aware of the health benefits of moderate drinking, but what constitutes moderate drinking? Or how much alcohol intake per day is considered moderate by doctors and health experts? Well, having a drink (a drink or one large peg of alcohol, or 60 ml of alcohol-containing approximately 42.5% alcohol, such as whisky, brandy, scotch, etc.) or two per day is considered moderate drinking. In terms of intake of absolute alcohol one to two drinks constitute 25 ml to 50 ml of alcohol, intake of which can be considered moderate alcohol intake.
Moderate alcohol intake regularly has several health benefits, especially on heart health, improvement of life expectancy, and general health.
Moderate alcohol intake and heart health:
Consumption of moderate alcohol regularly is associated with fewer heart problems and other cardiovascular problems. Reduction of heart disease among moderate drinkers is as much as 40%-60%, which is very important and significant because cardiovascular problems are the number one cause of death in most countries across the world and cause the death of nearly a million every year in the United States alone.
Moderate drinking and longevity:
Individuals who drink in moderation tend to live longer than their non-drinker or heavy drinker counterparts. A study at Harvard found that the reduction in mortality or risk of death was lower by approximately 25% among moderate drinkers in comparison to non-drinkers.
Moderate drinking and general health benefits:
- Moderate drinking is associated with fewer acute hospitalizations.
- Moderate drinking is associated with overall better health and better health scores.
- Moderate drinking can slow down health deterioration due to aging.
- Moderate drinking can reduce the risk of several diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, peptic ulcer, gallstones, osteoporosis, type-2 diabetes, etc.
- Moderate drinking can improve the mental status and reduce the risk of stress, dementia (such as Alzheimer’s disease), depression, etc.
If you are an abstainer and planning to take moderate alcohol to get the health benefits of moderate alcohol intake, take the idea with a pinch of salt because it is not easy to maintain moderate alcohol intake for long and you may end up becoming a heavy drinker, which has the worst effect on the health status of an individual. Think twice before taking up alcohol and be cautious.