A Drink A Day!

A Drink a Day Can Be Healthy for Some Women

Scientists concur that a drink a day for middle-aged women is healthy.

Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health analyzed nearly 14,000 responses to the Nurses’ Health Study – one of the largest ongoing women’s health studies in the United States – and found that those women who consumed one alcoholic beverage daily had better overall health than those who abstained.

The survey, which was published in the journal Plos Medicine, only looked at women during middle age, with the average survey respondent being 58 years old. It defined “healthy” in this instance as women approaching 60 that were aging better than their peers who did not drink. And they explain “aging better” here means reaching age 70 without developing chronic illnesses.

“What we are looking at is very comprehensive. For women who have one drink per day – equivalent to one can of beer, one shot of liquor, or one glass of wine – that is associated with an increased chance of achieving successful aging, which means multiple aspects of health,” according to Dr. Qi Sun, lead researcher at the Harvard School of Public Health.

The study also found that the number of times per week a woman drank mattered. Drinking several alcoholic beverages in a single sitting did not have the same benefits as spacing them out over time.