No question about it: Binge drinking is unsafe and unhealthy. But moderate drinking can be just what the doctor ordered.
A remarkable amount of research suggests that having one or two alcoholic drinks a day lowers most people’s risk of being stricken with heart disease, ischemic stroke, and even dementia. One major study published in 2010 by the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, for example, concluded that “in nine nationally representative samples of US adults, light and moderate alcohol consumption were inversely associated with CVD [cardiovascular disease] mortality, even when compared with lifetime abstainers.” Harvard’s School of Public Health notes on its nutrition website: “For most moderate drinkers, alcohol has overall health benefits.” In more than 100 long-term studies, many of which monitored their subjects’ health for 10 years or longer, researchers consistently documented a significant inverse association between moderate drinking and death from many forms of heart disease.
And not just heart disease. Numerous studies bear out the finding that moderate drinkers tend to live longer than both teetotalers and heavy drinkers. According to sociologist David Hanson of the State University of New York at Potsdam, even the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism — an organization plainly not inclined to downplay the potential dangers of liquor — has found that “the lowest death rate from all causes occurs at the level of one to two drinks each day.”
Federal law has required a health-warning label on alcoholic beverages since 1988. Yet even the government’s own dietary guidelines, regularly revised by the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services, acknowledge that adult beverages confer “beneficial effects when consumed in moderation.” Fewer heart attacks, better cholesterol levels, reduced hospitalization rates, less weight gain, lower risk of dementia and cognitive decline — all these life-saving or life-enhancing advantages, the data suggest, are likelier to be found among men and women who down a daily drink or two than among those who never drink at all.
In all seriousness though why can’t we do this? For specific liquors we can say exactly what the benefits are. Good for you, Boston Globe for raising this very serious issue. Now if only we can start getting more websites to post about this so people will actually read it, we can start getting some momentum on this vital issue.
Makes you feel full as shit so you don’t need to waste any time eating. Also will give you the ability to totally punch that wall, bro.
You can say that you drink whiskey. Boom.
Ever done legitimate Mexican bullfighting? Well now you have all the skills you’ll ever need, hombre.
Purple teeth are pretty sweet I guess? Plus if you like sniffing liquids in a douchey way, you’re golden.
See? Easy. If you’re going to argue that we need to put negative health labels on the booze, you might as well let us say what the different benefits are.