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There are many contradictions when it comes to drinking alcohol and the potential positive or negative consequences it can bring.
Drinking alcohol can benefit your health and it can also be detrimental to your health.
Drinking alcohol can be good for your heart and possibly help you live longer, but it can also harm your heart and kill you earlier.
The key element in all these cases is how much alcohol you are consuming.
Moderate use may yield several significant benefits. Abuse or heavy use can be lethal.
Moderate use of alcohol means one to two drinks a day for men, and one drink a day for women or men over age 65.
One drink equals a 12ounces of beer, 4-5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof distilled liquor.
For those following the moderate drinking guidelines, there may be some health benefits such as the following:
1) Moderate drinking may help to reduce your risk of developing heart disease and dying from it.
Studies have concluded that some people may show a slight increase in their HDL cholesterol levels due to moderate alcohol intake, according to the American Heart Association.
This increase in “good” cholesterol can also potentially be achieved through regular physical activity.
2) Moderate drinking may reduce your risk of ischemic stroke.
This can occur if blood flow to the brain is blocked or greatly reduced due to a blood clot. Blocked or narrowed arteries can also be contributors.
Some substances found in alcohol such as resveratrol may prevent blood platelets from sticking together (forming a blood clot). This could lower the risk for stroke and heart attack, the AHA reported.
3) Moderate drinking may reduce your risk of developing diabetes.
It is important to note that not everyone who drinks alcohol moderately will reap benefits. Studies have shown that older people and those who have existing factors for heart disease may benefit the most from moderate drinking.
Middle-aged and younger people can reap the same or better health benefits from an improved diet and regular exercise.