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Friday, 28 July 2017

Drinking wine three times a week cuts risk of diabetes - Study

Drinking alcohol ‘little and often’ on most days of the week could lower your risk of diabetes. A study has found men who drink three to four times a week slash their risk of type 2 diabetes by 27 per cent, compared to those who drink on less than one day.


Women can cut their odds by almost a third, with the polyphenols from the grapes in red wine believed to help control blood sugar.

A Danish study found beer may protect against diabetes too, although women may want to steer clear of the gin beer.

The study found drinking three to four times a week works best, as infrequent drinkers tend to drink more.

Those who binge-drink, rather than drinking small amounts regularly, could reverse the benefits of alcohol by causing weight gain, which is one of the causes of type 2 diabetes.

The study’s lead author, Professor Janne Tolstrup, from the University of Southern Denmark, said: ‘This study suggests that drinking little and often is protective for type 2 diabetes.

‘When it comes to diabetes, similarly to findings from studies on alcohol and coronary heart disease, it seems better to spread out the alcohol intake on more days as compared to taking the same total weekly amount in a single setting.’

The best amount to drink to prevent diabetes, based on the study of more than 70,500 people, is 14 drinks a week for men and nine for women.

For women, the equivalent of just over a bottle and a half of wine a week cut their risk of type 2 diabetes by 58 per cent compared to those who did not drink at all.

Men who had 14 drinks a week, or just over nine pints of beer, were found to have a 43 per cent lower risk.

The study looked at both the number of drinks and how often people drank, based on questionnaires, and followed them up for an average of 4.9 years.

The results were adjusted to reflect factors such as people’s weight, diet and family history of diabetes.

Scientists still do not know how alcohol may help ward off type 2 diabetes, which tends to affect people in middle age and is caused by poor diet and lack of exercise, unlike type 1 diabetes, which is caused by an immune system failure.

But the study, published in the journal Diabetologia, states: ‘One possible biological explanation of the protective effect of wine is that polyphenols, natural phytochemical compounds found in red wine, may exert beneficial effects on blood glucose control and thereby lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes.’

The authors found, however, that gin and vodka may not work as well as wine and beer, with women drinking seven or more drinks of spirits a week raising their diabetes risk by 83 per cent over those who had less than one a week.

Consuming between one and six beers per week gave a 21 per cent lower risk of diabetes in men compared with men drinking less than one beer a week, while it was not associated with diabetes risk in women.

Dr Emily Burns, head of research communications at Diabetes UK, said: ‘Type 2 diabetes risk is complex. Several factors contribute to it, including family history, ethnic background, age and being overweight.

‘While these findings are interesting, we wouldn’t recommend people see them as a green light to drink in excess of the existing NHS guidelines. Especially as the impact of regular alcohol consumption on the risk of Type 2 will be different from one person to the next.’

Daily Mail

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