ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Climate Change Could Sting Allergy, Asthma Sufferers
Childhood Food Allergies on the Rise
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Acupuncture Eases Side Effects of Head, Neck Cancer Treatments
Spot light on Dani Antman New Lionheart teacher
Quit Smoking the Holistic Way
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Beware of Dog Bites
BONES & JOINTS
A Winning Strategy to Beat Spring Sporting Injuries
Heart Failure Raises Risk of Fractures
Low Vitamin D Raises Women's Hip Fracture Risk
CANCER
Poor Women Seem to Be Skipping Breast Cancer Drugs
Ginger Can Ease Nausea From Chemotherapy Treatments
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
CAREGIVING
Reduce Suffering, Urge Heart Failure Patients and Caregivers
Falls Are Top Cause of Injury, Death Among Elderly
Obese Children More Likely to Suffer Lower Body Injuries
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Smog Tougher on the Obese
Grapefruit-Heavy Diet Helped Spur Dangerous Clot
A Brisk Pace May Keep Stroke at Bay
COSMETIC
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
DENTAL, ORAL
Laser Technology Spots Cavities Before They Start
Gummy Bears Join Cavity Fight
Acupuncture May Ease Anxiety Over Dental Work
DIABETES
Lifestyle Factors Tied to Older Adults' Diabetes Risk
Doctors Urged to Screen Diabetics for Sleep Apnea
Exercise Protects Black Women From Type 2 Diabetes
DIET, NUTRITION
Diet, Exercise May Slow Kidney Disease Progression
B Vitamins Might Lower Stroke Risk
The Best Diet? That Depends on You
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Air Pollution May Cause Appendicitis: Study Reveals
Cats Can Trigger Eczema in Some Infants
Staying Slim Is Good for the Environment
EYE CARE, VISION
Eye Care Checkups Tied to Insurance Status
FDA Goes After Unapproved Eye Washes, Skin Ointments
Guard Kids' Eyes Against Long-Term Sun Damage
FITNESS
Tai Chi: An Ideal Exercise for Many People with Diabetes
Meditation May Help Put Primary Insomnia to Bed
Diet, Exercise May Slow Kidney Disease Progression
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
GENERAL HEALTH
Time to Remind Teens About Sun Protection
8 Drugs Doctors Would Never Take
Fructose Boosts Blood Pressure, Studies Find
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
Using Light Therapy to Silence Harmful Brain Activity
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
More Steps a Day Lead to Better Health
Psychiatric Drugs Might Raise Cardiac Death Risk
Small Cuts in Salt Intake Spur Big Drops in Heart Trouble
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Obesity May Raise Kids' Allergy Risk
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
Combo Treatment Eases Wheezing in Babies
MEN'S HEALTH
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
Could Chinese Herb Be a Natural Viagra?
Soy Linked to Low Sperm Count
MENTAL HEALTH
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
The Unmedicated Mind
Massage Fosters Healing in Bereaved Relatives
PAIN
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Breast-Feeding May Protect a Woman's Heart
Yoga's Benefits Outweigh Risks for Pregnant Women
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
SENIORS
Nighttime Urination Linked to Higher Death Rate Among Elderly
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
15-Point Test Gauges Alzheimer's Risk
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Heal Your Life® Tips for Living Well
Postmenopausal Women With Breast Cancer Face Joint Issues
Whole Grains, Bran May Fight Hypertension in Men
Add your Article

Drink a Little Wine, Live a Little Longer

THURSDAY, April 30 (HealthDay News) -- Men who regularly drank up to a half a glass of wine each day boosted their life expectancy by five years, Dutch researchers report.

Light, long-term alcohol consumption of all types of beverages, whether wine, spirits or beer, increased life by 2.5 years among men compared with abstention, the researchers found. By "light," they meant up to 20 grams, or about 0.7 ounces a day.

While numerous other studies have found similar benefits, study author Martinette Streppel, of the division of human nutrition at Wageningen University in the Netherlands, said 40 years of follow-up is noteworthy for many reasons.

"The main strength of our study was the collection of detailed information on the consumption of different alcohol beverages at each of seven measurement rounds," Streppel said.

The long-term, regular follow-up, Streppel added, enabled the researchers to study the effect of long-term alcohol intake on mortality.

The study is published online in April in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

The Dutch researchers evaluated 1,373 men, all part of the Zutphen Study, started in 1960 and named for an industrial town in the Netherlands. The researchers followed them from 1960 to 2000, tracking weight, diet, cigarette smoking, the diagnosis of serious illness and other data, along with their drinking habits.

Over the follow-up period, 1,130 of the men died, half from cardiovascular disease.

The proportion of men who drank alcohol nearly doubled from 45 percent of the men in 1960 to 86 percent in 2000. Those drinking wine rose even more dramatically -- from just 2 percent to 44 percent.

The findings in more detail:

* All long-term light alcohol drinking boosted life expectancy by about 2.5 years in comparison to abstainers. Drinking more than 0.7 ounces a day extended life expectancy by nearly two years compared with nondrinkers.
* Wine drinkers who averaged just 0.7 ounces a day had a 2.5 year-longer life expectancy at age 50 compared to those who drank beer or spirits. And their life expectancy was nearly five years longer than nondrinkers.
* Drinking moderately was linked with lower death risk, and drinking wine was strongly linked with a lower risk of dying from heart disease, stroke or other causes.

Streppel couldn't say if the findings apply to women, but suspects the polyphenolic compounds found in wine, especially red wine, produce the heart-healthy effects.

The study adds to the literature of the health benefits of alcohol, but has both strengths and weaknesses, said Dr. Arthur Klatsky, a long-time investigator on the health benefits of alcohol.

"Once again, it shows that people who drink [moderately] do a lot better than people who don't in terms of survival," he said.

However, as with other research, Klatsky wondered if it's the pattern of drinking or something related to the wine drinking -- such as wine drinkers being more likely to exercise or eat a healthy diet -- that is the real link.

In the new Dutch study, he says, alcohol from spirits contributes the most to the total alcohol intake, more than wine or beer.

"It's a little hard to think that a little bit of wine is what is responsible for extending their life," Klatsky said.

The finding, like similar ones, applies more to middle-aged people than younger ones, he said. "People over 50 are the ones most likely to have health benefits from light drinking anyways."

Much more important in reducing heart disease risk, he said, is not smoking, exercising regularly, eating healthfully and maintaining a healthy weight.

-Kathleen Doheny

More information

For more on the health benefits of wine, visit the American Dietetic Association.



SOURCES: Arthur Klatsky, M.D., former cardiologist and investigator, Kaiser Permanente Division of Research, Oakland, Calif.; Martinette Streppel, Ph.D., division of human nutrition, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands; April 2009 Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, online

Last Updated: May 01, 2009

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