Glass half full

Irish Examiner - Feelgood - - Ageing With Attitude -

That reg­u­lar glass of red may not be so healthy af­ter all. A new study sug­gests peo­ple who drink mod­er­ately were more than three times as likely as ab­stain­ers to show ab­nor­mal lev­els of shrink­age in the right hip­pocam­pus of the brain, the area as­so­ci­ated with mem­ory. The study fol­lowed 550 Bri­tish adults — who were 43 years old, on av­er­age, at the out­set — over three decades and the par­tic­i­pants re­ported ev­ery five years on their lifestyle habits. They also took stan­dard tests on their mem­ory and other men­tal skills through­out, in­clud­ing an MRI brain scan. Although no direct link was sug­gested between the drink­ing habits of the par­tic­i­pants and cause of de­men­tia, it was found peo­ple who drank mod­er­ately per­formed poorer. Mod­er­ate drink­ing in­volves an av­er­age of 14 to 21 units of al­co­hol weekly, which is roughly four to six pints of beer, or five to seven glasses of wine.

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