Tags: Benefits | Moderate | Drinking | Are | Questioned

Benefits of Moderate Drinking Are Questioned

Tuesday, 04 April 2006 12:00 AM

The well-known health benefits of moderate drinking compared to abstaining -- reduced risk of heart attacks and death -- may not be real, according to a new study from the University of California San Francisco.

Dr. Kaye Fillmore and her UCSF colleagues found that 47 out of 54 studies on the subject had a common design flaw that caused people in the abstainer category to appear less healthy than they really are.

The flawed studies all included people in abstainer category who had only recently stopped drinking or drastically cut down. But since many older people abstain or cut down for health reasons, this meant that many abstainers were unhealthier to begin with.

When the investigators reviewed the seven studies that did not make the error, they found that moderate drinking offered no significant protective effects.

"Regular light drinking may be a marker for good health among middle aged and older people, not a cause of it," the researchers said.

Dr. Fillmore said that physicians who recommend moderate drinking for its health effects should think twice. The study appears in the journal, Addiction Research and Theory.

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The well-known health benefits of moderate drinking compared to abstaining -- reduced risk of heart attacks and death -- may not be real, according to a new study from the University of California San Francisco. Dr. Kaye Fillmore and her UCSF colleagues found that 47...
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2006-00-04
Tuesday, 04 April 2006 12:00 AM
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