Drinking and dementia: what do studies show?: image via wn.comIn case you think I am duplicating a recent column about moderate alcohol consumption being good for your health, that blog was about alcohol and heart disease. In another study of studies - 23 longitudinal ones - there are equally interesting findings about alcohol consumption and cognitive ability. Now don't go out and party yet....
... because alcoholism, aka alcohol abuse, is a cause of Alzheimer's disease. Knowing this, it is surprising that among men and women, 65 years and older, light to moderate drinking can decrease risk of Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia.
What ever happened to the notion, and vision, that each drop of alcohol you imbibe goes right to your head to kill your brain cells?
A new longitudinal study, conducted by several German universities, followed 3,202 persons aged 75 or older, who were dementia-free when assessed. They were followed and tested 1.5 years later and again 3 years later. Alcohol consumption, including quantity and type (e.g., beer, wine, liquor) was established at baseline and again at 1.5 years and 3 years.
Research findings supported that of the previous studies on the 65+ and younger populations, indicating that those who consumed moderate portions of alcohol daily were at lower risk for Alzheimer's dementia and other forms of dementia than non-drinkers or drinkers of excess. The mean age of this group, however, was just above 80 years of age, significantly above that of former studies.
The results were not affected by the type of alcohol consumed.
Sources: MedicalNewsToday, Oxford Journals: Age and Ageing
Related read: The Current Verdict On Alcohol And Your Heart