A Toast to the Ladies: Moderate Alcohol May Benefit Health
According to 2 separate studies, moderate alcohol intake may benefit olderwomen in the form of protection from kidney cancer and type 2 diabetes.
The first study involved data on 59,237 women, aged 40 to 76 years, who werecancer-free from 1987 to 1990. They completed food-frequency questionnairesthat included information on alcohol intake. By 2004, a total of 132 cases of kidneycancer were reported in this group.Women aged 40 to 55 years who reporteddrinking at least 1 serving of alcohol a week had a 38% lower risk of developingthe cancer than those who drank less. Older women reported an even lowerrisk—66% for women over 55.
A second study examined data from a cohort of over 16,300 women, aged 49to 70 years, who were free of diabetes at baseline and were studied for an averageof 6.2 years. During this time, 760 women developed type 2 diabetes. Thedata showed that women who consumed moderate amounts of alcohol(between 5 and 30 g a week) were much less likely to develop diabetes thanthose who abstained from drinking.