Published On: Fri, Sep 25th, 2015

Cheers, Ladies! Two beers a week may lower heart attack risk

London: Women who drink beer at most once or twice per week have a 30 per cent lower risk of heart attack, compared with both heavy drinkers and females who never drink beer, a new Swedish study has found.

Drinking beer at most once or twice has been found to 30 per cent lower risk of a woman's heart attack.

Drinking beer at most once or twice has been found to 30 per cent lower risk of a woman’s heart attack.

Researchers at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, followed a representative selection of the middle-aged female population from 1968 to 2000 (when the women in the study were between 70 and 92 years old).

With the data from the study, the researchers attempted to chart the relationship between the intake of different types of alcoholic beverages and the incidence of heart attacks, stroke, diabetes and cancer.

In the study, the 1,500 women were asked about the frequency of their consumption of beer, wine or spirits (from ‘daily’ to ‘nothing in the past 10 years’), and about various physical symptoms.

The results showed that over the 32-year follow-up period, 185 women had a heart attack, 162 suffered a stroke, 160 developed diabetes and 345 developed cancer.

The study showed a statistically significant connection between high consumption of spirits (defined as more frequent than once or twice per month) and an almost 50 per cent higher risk of dying of cancer, compared with those who drink less frequently.

The study also showed that women who reported that they drank beer once or twice per week to once or twice per month ran a 30 per cent lower risk of a heart attack than women who drank beer several times per week/daily or never drank beer.

“Previous research also suggests that alcohol in moderate quantities can have a certain protective effect, but there is still uncertainty as to whether or not this really is the case,” said Dominique Hange, researcher at Sahlgrenska Academy.

“Our results have been checked against other risk factors for cardiovascular disease, which substantiates the findings.

“At the same time, we were unable to confirm that moderate wine consumption has the same effect, so our results also need to be confirmed through follow-up studies,” Hange said.

The study was published in Scandinavian Journal of Primary Health Care.


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