Sunday, January 15, 2012
Hmmm. Abstaining from alcohol significantly shortens life.
The tightly controlled study, which looked at individuals between ages 55 and 65, spanned a 20-year period and accounted for variables ranging from socioeconomic status to level of physical activity. Led by psychologist Charles Holahan of the University of Texas at Austin, it 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.Judging from the dateline (August 2010), this is old news, but it is enjoying a renaissance on my Facebook feed this morning. It is useful data to rebut the new prohibitionists, who are very annoying people, so I am pleased to pass it along.
Of course, these results are averages. I have learned enough about alcoholism to know that if one suffers from the disease any drink is dangerous. But if one does not, well, then, *clink!*
MORE: Along the same lines...
There is a nice trend line with the definition of "moderate" drinking. When I first heard of these studies showing "moderate" drinking was optimal, "moderate" was defined as 1 drink per day. More recently it became 1-2 drinks/day. Now it's 1-3.
Moderate drinking in Massachusetts means still being able to find your car keys and insert them in the ignition, other places may have different ideas.
And what accounts for all those centenarian Mormon elders?
Oh please, stop with the "alchoholism is a disease" mantra!
Nobody, other than those who stand to gain financially or those who want an excuse or sympathy for their bad behavior, throw this canard around!
Yeah, Anon 3:06, I thought that too, for a long time. I have had, however, occasion to get involved with AA (in support of somebody I care about), and on the experience of hearing many heartfelt stories I have changed my mind. There are many compulsions or addictions that rise to the level of pathology, and genuine alcoholism is one of them.
Regardless, the principles of AA are not about excuse-seeking, they are about responsibility and ownership. Read the twelve steps, which are sincerely held by those who practice them, and see if you agree that such people (having fallen to the low state that finally moves them to seek help) are looking for an excuse or sympathy. That is the bailout of people who have not come to terms with their problem, not those who have.