Despite the fact that the typical glass of wine a day has been recommended for its multiple benefits, science has dismantled each and every one of them.
Surely more than once you have read things like "a glass of wine reduces cardiovascular risk" or "a glass of wine a day reduces the possibility of suffering from Alzheimer's." or even that "a daily glass of wine will help you live longer."
Interestingly, these types of readings are not usually accompanied by any scientific evidence, or links or citations from clinical studies or anything like it. They simply take advantage of the fact that in the Western world in general and in Spain in particular, “moderate alcohol consumption” has always been defended as beneficial to health. However, as we talked about in its day, there is no term "drink in moderation." And no, not even a single glass of wine a day provides any health benefits.
A glass of wine a day: the benefits they sell you
To defend the benefits of a glass of wine a day, we often repeat the same type of messages over and over again: "the antioxidants in wine improve cholesterol", "a glass of wine a day reduces cardiovascular risk", "a glass of wine improves memory and reduces the risk of Alzheimer's disease”. These and other messages are already very typical and it is not uncommon to read them even in important media and that is why, because they have told us so many times that we have assumed it to be true. To curl the curl, recently new "benefits" have appeared that touch the limit, such as “wine reduces the risk of dental infections” or “wine is very effective against gingivitis and sore throats". We are beginning to equate wine with miracle and homeopathic medicines, and that is dangerous.
Finally, one of the latest benefits that has attracted the most attention on social networks is that “drinking wine can help you lose weight”, because it contains a gene that "prevents the formation of fat cells." Of course, apparently the percentage of alcohol it contains does not counteract this gene at all, considering the high potential for weight gain that is associated with each gram of alcohol.
The dangers of alcohol in the short and long term
As I mentioned on the occasion that we banished the myth that drinking in moderation is a fallacy, if we tried to make a list of all the proven harms associated with alcohol, there would be material for several books. We have already commented on one of these damages, and that is that alcohol is closely associated with the risk of obesity, even if it is just one glass of wine a day (or a daily dose of alcohol, whatever the origin).
On the other hand, other studies not only do not associate the consumption of wine or any type of alcohol with a decrease in the risk of dementia or Alzheimer's, but a recent work published in The Lancet magazine, after analyzing more than a million participants, concluded that alcohol increases the risk of dementia. Just the opposite of what they usually sell us.
As if this were not enough, for the most staunch defenders of the glass of wine a day, who usually argue that "moderate or low consumption improves health", another recent review carried out by the American Society of Clinical Oncology and published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology also shattered this belief: a single dose of alcohol a day increases the risk of up to seven different types of cancer (breast, colon, oesophagus, liver, oral cavity, pharynx and larynx), standing out among them all oesophageal cancer, the risk of which increases up to 30% by consuming a single daily alcoholic drink.
But these are not the only studies to dismantle the association between the typical glass of wine a day and improvements in health. In July 2017, a study published in Diabetology already associated the consumption of three or four doses of alcohol a week (less than one a day) with a 30% increased risk of diabetes. Likewise, last year 2012 the well-known magazine The British Medical Journal also came to the conclusion that just half a glass of wine a day would be related to 4,500 deaths per year in England alone, imagine this data extrapolated to a larger population.
Therefore, the conclusion is clear: recommending a glass of wine a day is dangerous, not only because that "small" amount has already been shown to associate various risks, but also because the recommendation by health professionals can trigger a move to a situation of increased consumption and even alcoholism with the excuse of "the doctor told me that it is good. For this reason, the idea of tax- frying both alcohol and tobacco or soft drinks does not seem like such a bad idea today, something that recent studies, such as the one recently published in The Lancet, have already corroborated.
In short, a glass of wine a day will not make you live longer, nor will it make you die, but it may make you live a year less.
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