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Thursday, March 01, 2007

To Your Health: A Drink a Day Keeps the Doctor Away

Dutch researchers presented a study this week to the American Heart Association's 47th Annual Conference on Cardiovascular Disease Epidemiology and Prevention suggests light use of alcohol on a daily basis is associated with a lower rate of cardiovascular death and death from all causes.

The study by the Division of Human Nutrition at Wageningen University and National Institute for Public Health and the Environment in Bilthoven, The Netherlands, suggested that wine might do a better job than spirits or beer.

The Netherlands study looked at 1,373 men born between 1900 and 1920. The study tracked the men over a 40 year period. The surveys included drinking habits, dietary habits, body mass index, smoking habits and the prevalence of heart attack, stroke, diabetes and cancer. The statistics on alcohol consumption were adjusted to account for other risk factors. The participants who consumed one drink or a fraction of a drink a day compared to no alcohol intake had a 36 percent lower relative risk of all-cause death and a 34 lower relative risk of cardiovascular death. Further, the study found life expectancy was 3.8 years higher in those men who drank wine compared to those who did not drink alcoholic beverages.

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