As a woman who enjoys a glass of wine almost nightly (well, nightly), I was intrigued by a study published yesterday in the Archives of Internal Medicine that shows that alcohol may curb weight gain in women. While the study clearly does not advocate drinking for either gender, or recommend that women drink to control their weight, researchers did find that “compared with women who did not drink, women who drank 15 to 30 grams a day (the equivalent of a drink or two), were 30% less likely to be overweight or obese at the end of the study period”. Mind you, this study examined data from over 19,000 women enrolled in the long-running Women’s Health Study at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. The study was conducted over an average period of 13 years. Their conclusion – women consumed fewer calories from food if they had a drink or two, and were more active. However, the study also found that these women had less healthful diets, and a greater tendency to smoke.
Here’s my take – if you do drink, limit it to 1 glass of wine (preferably red wine), and maintain a rigorous activity schedule as a complement to your health-conscious eating regimen. That way, you can enjoy a healthy weight, healthy heart, healthy brain and lower BMI, all at the same time. Sound familiar?