Health And Wellness

People Who Drink Are More Likely To Live Longer, Says Study

Photo: Jacob Lund / Shutterstock
group of friends drinking alcohol

This is definitely the best reason to go to Happy Hour every now and then. At this point, every hour is happy hour. In moderation of course.

A 2013 report on Business Insider says that a study has found that those who regularly drink alcohol live longer than those who do not.

Now, before you rejoice and celebrate the news with a case of beer or an entire bottle of wine, take note that this refers to moderate drinkers, meaning those who drink within their limits, because otherwise, you may have an alcohol addiction or are setting yourself up for a series of health issues like liver cirrhosis or cancer. Luckily for you and me, we know when enough is enough.

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Now, to get to the nitty-gritty of the study. And it's very very happy results.

Researchers, led by University of Texas psychologist Charles Holahan, looked at participants aged 55 to 65 over a 20-year period. They took into account outside factors such as socioeconomic status, physical activity, friends, and social support.

They found that "mortality rates were highest for those who had never had a sip, lower for heavy drinkers, and lowest for moderate drinkers who enjoyed one to three drinks per day." Are you a moderate drinker? 

Amongst the moderate drinkers, 41 percent died prematurely compared to 69 percent of non-drinkers.

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How is it possible that alcohol drinkers are less likely to die prematurely than non-drinkers? Well, this is because, despite the negative effects of alcohol when consumed at high rates, it does have health benefits when drank in moderation. 

Beer contains various vitamins and nutrients that are good for the body, such as potassium, calcium, fiber, and antioxidants. These vitamins and nutrients make regular beer drinkers at a lower risk for heart diseases, kidney stones, rheumatoid arthritis, and even cancer

According to the study, there are also social and mental health benefits because "alcohol can be a great social lubricant, and strong social networks are essential for maintaining mental and physical health." I do say so myself that I can get quite social when I drink, good to know it leads to me living longer. No matter how many embarrassing videos there are of me being social.

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Basically, drinkers have a better social life, which is beneficial to their social, mental, and emotional health. Meanwhile, non-drinkers are more likely to show signs of depression and less sociability.

So, a drink now and then isn't so bad and can possibly increase your lifespan, leading to a life that is truly well-lived. Call your girlfriends over. Split a bottle of wine. Live. Have fun. Rejoice in the fact that you'll get to live for a long time — according to this study, at least.

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Caithlin Pena is a writer and editor for YourTango.

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