Economy

Wine warning: couple of glasses a night shortens life by two years

Wine warning: couple of glasses a night shortens life by two years

The old adage, "a glass a day keeps the doctor away", is a fallacy, according to a recent study.

One forty year old who drank up to twice that amount cut their life expectancy by six months, and those who drank more than 350g of wine of beer a week cut their lives by four to five years.

The report estimated that having 10 to 15 alcoholic drinks a week could shorten a person's life by one to two years, according to the BBC.

That's pretty significant. We may not think we're heavy drinkers, but just going a touch over the limit poses serious health risks.

The researchers have suggested that recommended alcohol limits should now be reduced down to 12.5 units a week.

University of Cambridge's Dr Angela Wood, the lead author of the study, explained: "The key message of this research is that, if you already drink alcohol, drinking less may help you live longer and lower your risk of several cardiovascular conditions".

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About half of those studied reported drinking more than 12.5 units a week - roughly five pints or medium glasses of wine - while nearly one in ten (8.5 per cent) consumed more than triple that amount.

The findings also go some way to resolving the question of whether alcohol protects the heart, as some studies have suggested, or damages it, as others indicate.

Those drinking more than five glasses of wine or pints of beer each week are at greater risk of a fatal aneurysm, a study finds.

In contrast, drinking more was associated with a lower risk of non-fatal heart attacks.

Victoria Taylor, senior dietitian at the British Heart Foundation, said the study seemed to "broadly reinforce" Government guidelines. About half of the drinkers reported consuming more than the U.K.'s recommended limits.

'Above two units a day, the death rates steadily climb, ' said David Spiegelhalter, Winton Professor for the Public Understanding of Risk at the University of Cambridge.

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