Drinking Alcohol Won't Make You Live Past 90
Recent headlines touted a link between daily alcohol consumption and a nearly 20-percent decrease in mortality risk — but those findings may be clouding the true relationship between alcohol and good health.
While a study of senior citizens did find a correlation between drinking two alcoholic beverages a day and increased longevity, the underlying reasons for this association aren't clear — and are likely not sufficient reason to celebrate booze as a health tonic, other research suggests.
The research in question is part of The 90+ Study, a massive, longitudinal study from the University of California, Irvine, that began in 1981 by surveying 14,000 senior citizens living in a retirement home. The initial participants answered questions about their health, hobbies and drinking habits involving alcohol, among other things. A 2007 paper published by the study's researchers found that seniors who drank two or more alcoholic drinks a day (it didn't matter what kind) had a 15-percent reduced risk of death compared to nondrinkers.