7 Health Benefits of Drinking Alcohol

While it might not be the best for your mental or physical well-being to get drunk every weekend, moderate alcohol consumption can have significant health benefits. Be aware that benefits and risks associated with alcohol consumption vary depending on the individual’s body composition and type.

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans state that moderate alcohol consumption can be defined as drinking no more than one drink per day for women and two for men. This is the daily average of alcohol consumed over a single day.

We all know the dangers of alcohol, but what about the advantages? Here’s a list of seven benefits that moderate alcohol consumption (when you are over the legal drinking age) can have on your health.

It can lower your risk of developing a heart attack.

Harvard University School of Public Health found moderate alcohol consumption increases high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good” cholesterol. Higher HDL levels are associated with greater protection against heart disease. A moderate alcohol intake has been associated with positive changes, including a higher sensitivity to insulin and improvements in blood clotting. These changes would help prevent small blood clots from forming in the brain, neck, heart and heart. This is the main cause of many strokes and heart attacks. This applies to both men and women who have never been diagnosed with cardiovascular disease.

It can lengthen your life.

You could live a few more years if you drink less often. According to Reuters, a study from the Catholic University of Campobasso found that women and men should drink less than four or two beverages per day. According to Dr. Giovanni de Gaetano, Catholic University’s other author, “Little amounts and preferably during meals seem to be the best way (to consume alcohol).” This is another characteristic of the Mediterranean diet. Wine, more than alcohol, is the best partner for a meal or lunch. However, the rest of the day must not contain alcohol.

It can improve your Libido

Newer research shows that moderate alcohol consumption may be protective against erectile dysfunction, contrary to previous beliefs. In a 2009 study, researchers discovered that alcohol-drinkers had a 25-30 percent lower chance of experiencing erectile dysfunction. Kew-Kim Chew (an epidemiologist at the University of West Australia) conducted 1,770 Australian men. Chew cautioned that he and his colleagues are not advising men to drink too much alcohol. Further research is necessary to determine if impotence can be linked to alcohol consumption.

It helps to prevent the common cold.

The Department of Psychology at Carnegie Mellon University concluded that smoking increased susceptibility to the common cold. At the same time, moderate alcohol intake led to a decrease of common cold cases in non-smokers. The study was done with 391 adults in 1993. According to the¬†New York Times,¬†Spanish researchers, a reduction of 60 percent in the chance of getting a cold was observed by drinking 8 to 14 glasses per week of red wine. Scientists suspected this was due to the wine’s antioxidant properties.

This can reduce the chance of developing dementia.

A study that involved more than 365,000 people since 1977 found that moderate drinkers were 23 percent less likely to develop cognitive impairment, Alzheimer’s disease, or other forms of dementia. “Minor amounts of alcohol may make brain cells more flexible.” According to Science Daily, moderate alcohol consumption can stress cells and make them more resilient to major stressors that may lead to dementia. Moderate drinking, if it’s truly moderate, can be beneficial.

It can reduce the risk of gallstones.

According to University of East Anglia researchers, drinking two units of alcohol per week can lower the risk of developing gallstones by one-third. The study showed that people who reported drinking two UK units per day saw a one-third decrease in the risk of developing gallstones. According to the study, researchers stressed that moderate alcohol intake is beneficial, but excessive alcohol intake could cause health problems.

Reduces the chance of developing diabetes

A Dutch study found that healthy adults who consume one to two glasses of alcohol per day are less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who don’t. Researchers released a statement to Reuters stating that the study showed moderate alcohol consumption could play a role in a healthy lifestyle and help lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

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