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Alcohol and health: Those 2 glasses a day that lengthen your life

A study performed by the Research Laboratories of the Catholic University of Campobasso (Italy) con-firms the beneficial effects that moderate consumption of alcohol has on our health. But this time it is not just cardiovascular disease that gets advantage from this: drinking in moderation reduces all-cause mortality.

The research, published on the American journal Archives of Internal Medicine, assembled 34 scientific studies conducted during the last years worldwide using the statistic procedure of meta-analysis, that al-lows to match different studies to achieve general results. In this way it has been possible to examine data concerning over a million of people, for which alcohol drinking habits were associated with all-cause mortality.

The conclusions researchers from the Catholic University of Campobasso came to clearly show that drinking in moderation (a couple of wine or beer glasses a day) has beneficial effects on health. But that is not all: while the greatest part of the studies conducted on this issue have looked at cardiovascular disease, a term that includes clinical events of various severity, the study published on the Archives of In-ternal Medicine shows a positive effect of alcohol on an unquestionably hard parameter as overall mortality.

Alcohol as a life insurance" Not exactly. The key word is moderation. The Italian research also con-firms that excessive consumption of alcohol is absolutely harmful, and the risk of death for those who drink in excess does not decrease at all. On the contrary: the risk definitely increases.

"Our data- says Augusto Di Castelnuovo, lead author of the study - show that consumption of little amounts of alcohol leads to a reduction of mortality up to 18%. But after a certain number of glasses things radically change: who drinks too much not only looses this advantage, but increases his own risk of death in relation to the amount of alcohol consumed".

The study
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Contact: Antonio Mascioli
amascioli@rm.unicatt.it
39-087-431-2272
Catholic University
11-Dec-2006


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