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People Who Drink Alcohol Every Day Are Less Likely to Get Dementia

An intriguing 30-year-long study of heavy alcohol drinkers found that heavy drinkers are more likely to live to the age of 85 without being stricken with dementia, The Independent reports. But, before you decide this is a bottoms-up license to imbibe into oblivion, note that the study defined “heavy” as those who drank UP TO three drinks a day — beyond that you could actually trigger dementia, researchers cautioned. Interestingly, this study of both men and women showed that alcohol consumption was also associated with reduced mortality.

Please note this study stresses that drinking too much can cause the dreaded disease you’re trying to avoid. This is important because other studies show that even moderate alcohol consumption can endanger other aspects of your health — meaning, while you’re avoiding dementia with those three drinks, you could be encouraging liver disease, systemic inflammation, leaky gut and even cancer.

There’s always a “sweet spot” in anything you do. And since drinking is so common, you may not give much thought as to how much is too much. So, despite what the newest study may show, I would not use it to justify chronic drinking. I generally define "moderate" alcohol intake (which is allowed in the beginner phase of my nutrition plan) as a 5-ounce glass of wine, a 12-ounce beer or 1 ounce of hard liquor, with a meal, per day.

As you progress further in the nutrition plan, I recommend eliminating all forms of alcohol. Even if it provides some benefit, it's unlikely that alcohol will add much to an otherwise healthy diet and lifestyle. If you do choose to drink, remember that exercise not only may mitigate the risks, but may also diminish your risk of alcohol abuse, as exercise helps relieve cravings that make you want to drink too much.