Monday, May 21, 2007

Some Alcohol May Help Aging Brains

Less Than a Drink a Day Found Protective WebMD 5/21/07 "...less than one drink a day, low to moderate drinking was associated with a significantly slower progression to dementia among people with mild age-related cognitive declines, compared with nondrinkers...The protective benefit was not seen with higher alcohol consumption...Earlier findings from the study suggest that specific staples of the diet, including olive oil, whole grains, and red wine, can help protect aging brains...Researcher Vincenzo Solfrizzi, MD, PhD, tells WebMD that these dietary influences may act synergistically to slow mental decline, possibly by reducing the blood vessel inflammation thought to contribute to Alzheimer’s disease...Patients with MCI (mild cognitive impairment) who said they did drink alcohol but drank less than one drink a day had an 85% lower rate of progression to dementia over 3.5 years of follow up than nondrinkers ...A drink was considered to have 0.5 ounces of alcohol -- the amount typically found in a 12-ounce glass of regular beer, a 5-ounce glass of wine, or a cocktail containing 1 ounce of spirits..."

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